Proteas well on the right track

2010-01-14 14:31

SUPERB bowling by Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel got the Proteas to a fine start they were hoping for in the fourth and final Castle Test match currently underway at the BidVest Wanderers against the visiting England team.

The pair took seven wickets between them.

The often expensive Morkel took three crucial wickets of Jonathan Trott (5), Kevin Pietersen (7) and Alastair Cook (21) to send the visitors to lunch struggling at 100/4.

Leading Test wicket-taker Steyn drew the first blood with the first ball of the morning, dismissing skipper Andrew Strauss for a duck, with a firing shot which the South African-born batsman had no idea of it and was brilliantly caught at silly point by the diving Hashim Amla.

Since then Morkel took advantage of the seamer-friendly Wanderers pitch and struck at regular intervals to give his captain, Graeme Smith, the start he was desperately looking for as he looks to level the series. South Africa is trailing the four-Test series 1-0, having drawn the first and the third.

Morkel, the right-arm fast bowler, got the off-form Pietersen caught by fast bowler Wayne Parnell, the new member to the Test game, at short mid-wicket before trapping Cook leg-before-wicket.

Steyn came into the picture again when he dismissed Ian Bell, Ryan Sidebottom and Matt Prior to take his wicket tally to four reducing England to 156/9.

The introduction of newcomers Ryan McLaren and Parnell gave Bell and Paul Collingwood a sigh of relief as the duo rebuilt the collapsing innings with a fourth wicket partnership of 76, before McLaren retaliated with a dismissal of Collingwood (47) in the first over after lunch.

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