Petersen, Dussen keep England at bay in second Test



South Africa’s Keegan Petersen and Rassie van der Dussen batted through an entire session to frustrate England’s bid for a series-levelling win with more than two days to spare in the second Test at Old Trafford on Saturday.

The Proteas were 141-3 in their second innings at tea on the third day, still 123 runs adrift of England’s first innings 415-9 declared — a total built on Ben Foakes’s 113 not out and Ben Stokes’s 103, his first hundred since being appointed England captain.

But considering Petersen (42 not out) and Van der Dussen, unbeaten on 41 despite batting with a finger injury to his left hand, had come together before lunch, with South Africa 54-3, their unbroken stand of 87 was a gutsy effort.

England’s frontline pace trio of James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ollie Robinson had all taken a wicket apiece before lunch to leave South Africa 88-3, with Petersen then 20 not out and van der Dussen 14 not out.

Stokes, who brought on part-time off-spinner Joe Root to open the bowling Saturday, with the pitch taking turn and also used slow left-armer Jack Leach either side of lunch, rang the changes in a bid to take a fourth wicket ahead of the new ball.

The pace bowling all-rounder even brought himself on for a six-over spell, despite concerns over his longstanding left knee injury, but all to no avail.

An attritional session of 53 runs in 29 overs be-tween lunch and tea featured just two fours, both hit by van der Dussen, with a flick off Leach through midwicket followed by a pull off Robinson.

South Africa resumed Saturday on 23-0, facing a huge task to preserve a 1-0 lead in this three-match series after an innings and 12-run rout of England in the first Test at Lord’s.

– Anderson strikes – They then lost both openers nine overs into the day’s play.

South Africa captain Dean Elgar fell without addition to his overnight 11 when he was clean bowled by a full-length delivery from 40-year-old England great Anderson, on his Lancashire home ground, that sent the left-handed opener’s off-stump cartwheeling. South Africa’s 33-1 soon became 39-2 when Elgar’s fellow left-hander Sarel Erwee, who had taken his 12 not out at Friday’s close to 25, played neither a leave nor a defensive stroke to edge a Rob-inson delivery from around the wicket to wicket-keeper Foakes.

South Africa were almost 44-3 when Broad bowled the struggling Aiden Markram for a duck with a superb delivery that angled in, beat the outside edge and disturbed the off bail only to be denied the wicket by a marginal, but correct, no-ball ruling by third umpire Nitin Menon.—APP


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