England v South Africa | 1st Test | The Oval | Jul 19-23, 2012

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England have got themselves into a decent position but it's early days.

Come on, another century for Cook.

Can totally see KP failing in this test/series.
 
Steyn hasn't quite been himself this year. He was a little underwhelming in the NZ series as well.
 
England have a good platform here and should be looking to push on towards something big if they can get through the new ball which will be due.
 
If nothing else, I want to see Philander debunked... And why is Sky frozen? The overcount and stuff is not changing in the overlay.
 
Same Cook that got schooled by Amir and Asif...

Oh enough with that stupid stuff. That year the conditions were perfect for swing bowling, and everyone did poorly, and Cook is allowed a bad series here and there. People need to stop bringing up Asif and Amir as the gods of bowling to last tour England. Funnily enough, they same Asif and Amir let a bowler score over a 100, and let a huge partnership with Trott develop. The same Asif and Amir sold out their country for no-balls. The same Asif and Amir averaged below (Asif was near 30 IIRC) Jimmy and took less wickets.
 
bet Pakistan must be happy to let Tahir go. he is bowling utter filth.

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From now on ........ there would be only 2 possible results ....... England win or a Draw.
 
England on course for 500 here and then pressure on SA to respond with bat. Swan bowling on day 4 and 5 :D
 
Couldn't have asked for more from England today. Superb so far.
 
Bell has been better than The Don in his last 10 tests in England

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Is Steyn injured?

We seem to be his bogey team at times.
 
Can steyn ever bring the ball back into the right handers. I just have never seen him do that.
 
steyn was below part even vs us. was easily overshadowed by Morkel and Philander

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Solid day for England in the end, could have been better if KP didn't throw it away. And very well played by Cook.
 
didn't expect track to be that flat.. Really dry and slow pitch. Swann might be handy on it though..

Said above, England played well and Saffers bowled poorly. They didn't make England play enough balls. bowlers lacked aggression too.

Steyn needs to be given the new ball.
 
Whilst the track is placid and englands batsmen helped themselves to runs i thought S.A as a bowling unit were today pretty average. Apart from kallis i think no S.A bowler really applied any pressure through actually making the batsmen play continously at the ball. Also S.A seem to be intent on bowling two lengths (short) or back of length (good areas). However alot of the balls on good length were then lacking in good line.

The lack of fuller deliveries or even attempting yorkers wasnt apparent. The wicket is dry and i think we may say the best of the surface on day 2/3 for batting before pitch starts to get slower and i think will take alot of spin so if england can gain a big lead on 1st inns this could help them alot on day 4/5.

Also i can see England bowlers attacking the stumps more and causing more problems. For such a dry surface the lack of reverse swing was quite apparent also.
 
They didn't bowl much within the stumps either. Should have bowled full to cook and let him play across the line or straight drives (which he isn't comfortable playing). really disappointed by their bowling effort.
 
After all the hype a pretty average day of test match cricket all round. South Africa lost heart early on seeing a slow, dry pitch with no swing or seam. England went too slow considering the great batting conditions.

Hats off to Cook ,another brilliant innings.

Hope day 2 brings more interesting cricket.
 
agreed with KKWC. It was a boring day. England played too slow. They could have really dominated the bowling but instead they went at a snail's pace.
 
The fact englands run rate was 3 an over across the day means that they never really fully got away from S.A despite the strong postion only 3 wickets down.
 
The fact englands run rate was 3 an over across the day means that they never really fully got away from S.A despite the strong postion only 3 wickets down.

YES SIR! All these folks calling the Saffer bowling average or below, need to look at the run rate of the dullest wicket this side of Batting Paradise..er...National Stadium Karachi....to realize that the scoring was restricted very well by these 'average' bowlers....
 
I can understand why the neutral would be feeling slightly underwhelmed, but from our perspective it was the ideal first day for England. All of the pre-series hype surrounded the South African pace bowlers and how they were going to blow away our top order and win the series, and yet England provided them with a strong foil, progressing quite serenely with flashes of high class to register a solid first day total. Advantage England in not merely the Oval test match (marginal), more so the mental stakes at this stage.
 
Basically what James said. England have batted really well. However we need to bowl well too now or this match will probably be a draw because I expect at least a day to be washed out. The result may be decided depending on how the pitch reacts on day 4 and 5.
 
I can understand why the neutral would be feeling slightly underwhelmed, but from our perspective it was the ideal first day for England. All of the pre-series hype surrounded the South African pace bowlers and how they were going to blow away our top order and win the series, and yet England provided them with a strong foil, progressing quite serenely with flashes of high class to register a solid first day total. Advantage England in not merely the Oval test match (marginal), more so the mental stakes at this stage.

...not to mention winning the toss on a pancake wicket...always helps, neutralizing the opponent's bowlers....we shall see when the Saffers get in....
 
South Africa have the batting talent to put up 500 on this pitch, but one thing could change the course of events: scoreboard pressure. England's best chance of winning is to score 500 of their own and then try and shoot out the South Africans under clouds for a low score. Anderson and Swann as per usual will be the key bowlers.
 
Hopefully there is moisture in the pitch by start of play, tomorrow and South Africa can exploit that. England batting more positively would also help.
Pretty disappointing so far.
 
If it ends up being exciting to watch then that is just a bonus. For England fans this is yet another incredibly difficult test series to go along with all of them this year either side of it, the year that will make or break our team's future - as if playing Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India in Asian conditions wasn't a tough enough schedule. All we want to do in whatever fashion this summer is win it.
 
England have done very well. Hard to see how they could have done better. Might argue that if KP stayed in, but Cook staying in might be even better given his reputation these days to turn those centuries into double centuries.

South Africa heading to a loss at the moment. This sort of score on any England pitch is good, especially against a touring nation.
 
This pitch will turn on either 4th or 5th day. Swann to play big role if Eng. is to win this test, and also depends on how much they post on tomorrow. Right now, pitch is pretty flat and slow.
 
Good pitch for england to take some serious psychological advantages from. Saffers were looking a little frustrated already.
 
Amla should feast on this wicket. I sense Kallis would enjoy batting on this wicket as well. They are already on backfoot as England look to score patiently.
 
Is Steyn injured?

We seem to be his bogey team at times.

Bowling him first change was a very South African thing to do. Computer says he averages 30+ against lefties, therefore follow computer.

Forgetting that to not have the worlds best bowler with the new ball on the first morning of a series is a big mental boost to the opposition.

He is an odd bowler though, when not in rhythym he can look kinda pedestrian and frustrated. Then out of nowhere he kills you.

When he came out to Aus the last time, I thought how is this guy good? for the first Test and a half, then out of nowhere he took a 5fer and demolished us.
 
Do captains take bowlers into confidence when making these kind of decisions? I mean.. did Smith and Coach discuss it with Steyn or they simply made the decision/strategy and told him?
 
Do captains take bowlers into confidence when making these kind of decisions? I mean.. did Smith and Coach discuss it with Steyn or they simply made the decision/strategy and told him?

No idea but South Africa have a habit of blindly following a predetermined plan regardless of the game.

More than once I have seen them open the bowling on a crucial morning with 2nd and 3rd string bowlers, just because it was their turn in the robotic bowling change schedule they seem to stick to.

They are very talented but not very imaginative.
 
No idea but South Africa have a habit of blindly following a predetermined plan regardless of the game.

More than once I have seen them open the bowling on a crucial morning with 2nd and 3rd string bowlers, just because it was their turn in the robotic bowling change schedule they seem to stick to.

They are very talented but not very imaginative.

I agree they should have brought steyn especially when Strauss got out in the first over. Shane Warne and Holding were discussing the same point as well. Maybe it's a Donald's thing? Remember he often used to come 1st change as well? Or was it in ODIs only?
 
I agree they should have brought steyn especially when Strauss got out in the first over. Shane Warne and Holding were discussing the same point as well. Maybe it's a Donald's thing? Remember he often used to come 1st change as well? Or was it in ODIs only?

Donald did do that, but it was because he had difficulty controlling the swing sometimes. I dont think Steyn has that issue.
 
Overall, a very good day of work for the Englishmen. The Saffer bowling looks more rusty than anything else. They seem to have landed in the middle of the battle zone in their pyjamas.
 
And Steyn wanted to scare the sh*t out of the English batsmen!

Haha.. Thats why they say, you let your performances do the talking..
 
The South Africans look undercooked to me - their scheduling and also the weather hasn't allowed them a great deal of match practice. They may improve as early as tomorrow but make no mistake, either way they will enjoy the conditions at Headingley. England then have to make their current decent position at the Oval count.
 
Hi all on the 2nd day of the match!!

So how's the weather there today? Any chances of Rain?

I have a feeling that although this pitch might turn, it'll be a slowish kind of turn which will give the batsmen plenty of time to adjust. The odd delivery might grip the surface and cause trouble later in the match. But no demons in the pitch really according to me.

SA bowlers were wayward yesterday. They did not bowl much in the right areas. If SA has to win the series, they have to somehow save this match.

England on the other hand have gained the much needed psychological advantage over the much hyped SA bowling. They might not have scored too many on the first day, but they have successfully negated any collapses, which might help them later in the series.
 
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