South Africa in charge of 2nd test after tumultuous Day 2

BY AP • July 15, 2017

NOTTINGHAM, England (AP) South Africa took control of the second test against England and saw a way back into the series after a tumultuous second day on Saturday when 15 wickets fell and the Proteas emerged with a 205-run lead and nine wickets in hand.

South Africa was 75-1 in its second innings after weathering a blistering 78 from 76 balls by England captain Joe Root to bowl the English out for 205 in their first innings.

The Proteas' lead grew to beyond 200 at stumps with an unbroken 57-run stand between Dean Elgar (38 not out) and Hashim Amla (23 not out), who established some calm for South Africa at the end of the day.

It was a roller-coaster day for the most part, though, and South Africa took command only in the final session on a swinging, bowler-friendly track at Trent Bridge, where 21 wickets have gone down in the first two days.

At the start of Day 2, South Africa lost its last four wickets for 26 runs in 6.2 overs to be all out for 335 in its first innings after a magnificent spell of 4-4 by James Anderson.

Anderson sent Vernon Philander back in the first over of play without adding to his overnight score of 54. He removed Keshav Maharaj and Morne Morkel with traditional outswing bowling, and in between those two wickets had Chris Morris caught and bowled.

The veteran England quick needed just 20 deliveries to collect those four wickets, finishing with 5-72 and his 22nd five-wicket haul in test cricket.

England was immediately in trouble at 3-2 before Root's innings made batting look easy, with the England skipper at his free-flowing best, hitting 12 fours and reaching 50 off just 40 balls.

At one point, Root and Gary Ballance were going at five runs an over.

Root's attacking approach was his undoing, though, as he went for a full-blooded cover drive off Morkel and edged behind for wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock to take the diving catch that turned the day for South Africa.

Root's departure began a collapse of 7-62 for England - which included three wickets for no runs - and South African left-arm spinner Maharaj showed spin could also be a factor at Trent Bridge with two crucial wickets just before tea in his 3-21.

Maharaj found extra bounce to have Ben Stokes (0) caught by wicketkeeper De Kock after a juggle, and after a review to check the ball hadn't clipped De Kock's helmet before he completed the catch.

Maharaj then produced a ball as good as any from the seamers over the last two days, pitching near middle and spinning away to hit off stump and remove Jonny Bairstow for 45 as he threatened to lead an England revival.

It's the South Africans who have revived themselves for now after a heavy 211-run loss in the first test at Lord's.

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