Johannesburg - South Africa had threatened to take the game away from England, but lost Hashim Amla and Dean Elgar before tea on the opening day of the third Test at the Wanderers.
The Proteas will start the third session on 152/3 with AB de Villiers (29*) and Faf du Plessis (6*) at the wicket.
Amla and Elgar started well after lunch and were threatening to go big as the sun started to show itself in Johannesburg.
Ben Stokes was adamant he had Amla out LBW for 26 in the 34th over when his huge appeal was turned down by umpire Aleem Dar.
Stokes' reaction was such that captain Alastair Cook had little choice but to review, but Amla was safe as an 'umpire's call' showed not enough of the ball clipping the bails.
Elgar was then out in the first over after the drinks break when he pushed at off-spinner Moeen Ali but found an outside edge to Jonny Bairstow behind the stumps.
The Proteas opener had done all the hard work, dealing with a potentially lethal spell from Steven Finn, but he could not cash in as he was back in the hut for 46.
AB de Villiers came to the wicket for the first time as Test captain and got going immediately, hitting his third and fourth balls for boundaries.
Amla (40) was out soon afterwards as Finn got the wicket he probably deserved.
It was a beautiful piece of bowling from the England quick, who got the ball to move away from Amla, who could only edge through to Bairstow.
That left the Proteas on 127/3, but De Villiers and Du Plessis had put on 25 for the fourth wicket by tea to recover from the wobble.