South Africa leave England record target
16 Jul 2017 - 23:58
Nottingham: England must chase down a world-record 474 to win the second Test while South Africa have two full days to bowl them out after the tourists’ batsmen provided the strongest possible platform for victory on the third day.
It could have even better for South Africa who, after declaring on 343-9 just before the close, thought they had Alastair Cook lbw first ball, although the decision was reversed on review.
England survived two other frenetic lbw appeals before reaching 1-0, still 473 adrift and facing a huge task on a wearing pitch as South Africa push for the victory at Trent Bridge that would level the four-match series 1-1.
No Test team have scored more than 418 to win, while the record at Trent Bridge is a more modest 284-7, which England chalked up to beat New Zealand in 2004.
When South Africa resumed on 75-1, England knew they had to take early wickets and will rue the basic error that allowed Hashim Amla to escape at 91-1 when they failed to review a half-hearted appeal by Stuart Broad. TV replays later showed an edge to the keeper.
Inevitably Amla made England pay, seldom looking troubled by still difficult conditions to make 87 -- his second half-century of the match -- before falling lbw to Liam Dawson on review.
The bearded right-hander shared strong partnerships with Dean Elgar, who made a steadfast 80 after surviving a sharp early chance to Jimmy Anderson, and Faf du Plessis.
Ben Stokes claimed the wickets of both partners: Elgar fell fending away to a ball which rose spitefully while South Africa’s captain was trapped lbw by one that kept low after a watchful 63, dismissals that proved why the high-energy Durham paceman was England’s most potent bowler.
Even the new ball failed to check the tourists, with Vernon Philander (42) and Chris Morris increasing the tempo as the sun came out in the final session.