South Africa battle hard against England on rain-hit Day 3

January 19 2020

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South Africa fought hard on a rain-hit Day 3 of the third Test against  England to reduce their first innings deficit to 291 runs at St George's  Park here on Saturday. Quinton de Kock will start Day 4 on an overnight  score of 63 off 134 balls and has Vernon Philander (27 off 55) to keep  company. South Africa are 208/6 at stumps in reply to England's first  innings total of 499/9 decl.

The highlight of the day was a  resilient knock by nightwatchman Anrich Nortje, who was sent in after  the dismissal of Zubayr Hamza on Day 2 and occupied the crease for most  of Day 3. He absorbed 136 balls for his 18 before edging to England  captain Joe Root at slips off Ben Stokes.

Stokes had a rather  wretched day on the field, dropping three chances. All three chances  came off the bat of de Kock at slips while Nortje was dropped once by  Root early in the day at the same position.

Dom Bess (22)  completed his first Test fifer by taking the wickets of Dean Elgar,  South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis and Rassie Van der Dussen in  addition to his Day 2 scalps of Pieter Malan and Hamza.

With  rain in forecast for the next two days, England will be looking to go  through with the South Africa innings as quickly as possible and enforce  a follow on.

Brief scores: England 499/9d (Ollie Pope 135, Ben  Stokes 120; Keshav Maharaj 5/180) vs South Africa 208/6 (Quinton de Kock  63 n.o., Dean Elgar 35; Dom Bess 5/51)

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  • IANS