Saturday, August 2, 2008

Andrew Flintoff took two wickets and Monty Panesar one as England dominated the afternoon session on day four and pushed for victory in the third Test

Andrew Flintoff took two wickets and Monty Panesar one as England dominated the afternoon session on day four and pushed for victory in the third Test.

Chasing 281 to win, Neil McKenzie and Graeme Smith reached 65-0 before Flintoff trapped McKenzie and Jacques Kallis in front of their stumps.

In between, Panesar had Hashim Amla lbw amid scenes of excitement at Edgbaston.

Earlier, England were earlier bowled out for 363, Paul Collingwood finishing on 135 and Morne Morkel taking 4-97.


By Mark Mitchener

e-mail (with 'For Mark Mitchener' in the subject), text 81111 (with "CRICKET" as the first word) or use 606. (Not all contributions can be used)


1529 - SA 97-4 (30 overs)
New batsman AB de Villiers fences outside off stump and it flies just wide of Alastair Cook at gully for four. The Tinkerman brings in a second gully, but ABDV sees off the rest of the over.

Wicket falls
1525 - WICKET - Prince c Ambrose b Anderson 2 - SA 93-4 (29.2 overs)
After another Smith single, Anderson induces a nick from Prince and Tiny Tim takes the catch! Well, he should have been given out last over, so I think justice is served. The crowd are on their feet. And in the post-wicket celebration, Monty leaps on Anderson's back and sends him crashing to the floor! ("Like a lion taking down a wildebeest!", says Aggers on TMS)

1524 - SA 92-3 (29 overs)
Umpire Steve Davis is rabbiting away on his walkie-talkie, and I don't think he's getting his pie orders in for the tea interval. Smith pads up to Monty and there's a big shout, but umpire Dar is unimpressed. A single brings Prince back on strike, and there's another lbw appeal as Monty gets even more turn - possible too much. The third big shout of the over comes when Prince tries to nudge one to leg, and appears to glove it to Tiny Tim. But not only does Dar reject the appeal (when TV replays suggest it definitely brushed his glove), he gives Monty a little talking-to, probably for excessive appealing and running on the pitch while doing so.

1517 - SA 91-3 (28 overs)
Flintoff takes a breather after those two crucial wickets, and after a single from Smith, Anderson has Prince flinching at a lifting delivery which flies off his glove but falls short of Colly at gully. The South African physio then runs out to attend to Prince, whose hand is still smarting after that one which hit his glove. Smith is still chuntering about the sightscreen.

"Am outside the Church of Little Angels in Virginia, USA, complete with my CD copy of Yvonne Fair's classic 'It should have been me', and my Dustin Hoffman 'Graduate' wedding agony impression. Imagine - a woman who would actually want to 'understand my world'. She mustn't get away from me..."
Mick in the TMS inbox

1513 - SA 90-3 (27 overs)
Smith, bristling after those last two wickets, despatches Monty for a four to mid-wicket. A leg-bye brings fellow left-hander Prince on strike, and he nearly gives a bat-pad catch but the ball arcs up out of the reach of the diving Ian Bell at silly point.

1510 - SA 85-3 (26 overs)
New batsman Ashwell Prince is off the mark with two off his first ball. And match referee Ranjan Madugalle might want to have a look at Kallis's reaction to being given out.

Wicket falls
1508 - WICKET - Kallis lbw b Flintoff 5 - SA 83-3 (25.5 overs)
Flintoff finally gets Kallis in his sights. But it's first blood to Kallis as an attempted inswinging yorker drifts too far across Kallis's legs and he helps it on his way to the legside boundary. But then Flintoff fires in a full toss, Kallis tries to duck, fails to play a shot and it hits him full on his right thigh - he's out lbw! Kallis is apoplectic with fury, clearly angry with the whole window/sightscreen/sightlines situation. After some choice words (and some rather enthusiastic celebrations from England in Kallis's face), the burly South African all-rounder has to go. With the greatest of reluctance.

1504 - SA 79-2 (25 overs)
After Kallis is off the mark with a single off Monty, the Tinkerman puts in an unusual field for Smith, with a short leg and a short mid-wicket. But to little effect.

"Why do batsmen get more chances than bowlers? [1405 entry] Because a batsman makes one mistake and his wicket is gone. A bowler makes a mistake and it's a wide/four/six. Bowlers have tens/hundreds of chances to prove themselves over the course of an innings, and can slip up without being written off, but a batsman could get a bad decision or just have a bit of bad luck one ball"
James Hamand in the TMS inbox

1501 - SA 78-2 (24 overs)
Vaughan sets a deep field for Smith, seemingly offering him a single so Flintoff (who's bowled six overs and may be nearing the end of his spell) can have a pop at new batsman Jacques Kallis (having bowled him in the first innings). But Smith seems to have second-guessed this, and doesn't look particularly interested in a single. A maiden over ensues, it's a bit of cat and mouse at the moment. (Message to England: make sure you're not the mouse).

"To Andrew Davidson (1348) - isn't the appeals system you describe exactly the one being trialled in the India-Sri Lanka series, and also the one offered by the ICC for this series, which South Africa were happy to adopt but England rejected?"
Kev Osman, Bridgwater, Somerset, in the TMS inbox

Wicket falls
1455 - WICKET - Amla lbw b Panesar 6 - SA 78-2 (23 overs)
Monty gets some sharp turn against Amla, then pins his bearded rival back on his crease and traps him lbw! That's more like it, Monty!

1453 - SA 78-1 (22 overs)
Flintoff keeps it tight against Smith. It's raining heavily now here in Shepherd's Bush, battering into the window next to me, but it's still sunny at the edge of Baston as Smith finally gets Flintoff away with a cover-driven four.

1449 - SA 74-1 (21 overs)
Amla turns Monty to leg for a single, Smith steers one to the square leg boundary, and Amla works the last ball away for a couple. Meanwhile, my colleagues here in the office collectively "diss" South Africa's claim about the "window" and the sightscreen - seeing as it's the same for both teams, and Morkel and Nel are both taller than Flintoff anyway!

James Anderson
Michael C. Hall as "Dexter"
"Am I the only one to notice, how similar James Anderson is to TV's mass murderer, Dexter? I just hope he can carve up South Africa today"
Graham West in the TMS inbox

1442 - SA 70-1 (20 overs)
Smith summons 12th man Monde Zondeki out to the middle (he carries a token pair of batting gloves, which are ignored), and the TMS team think Smith isn't happy with an area at the edge of the sightscreen after McKenzie's dismissal as he appeared to lose sight of that yorker - remember, Kallis complained about a window in the same area after he was bowled by a similar Flintoff delivery on Thursday evening. Shaun Pollock is clearly a fan of the other "12th man" (the Aussie comedian and impressionist) as he recommends they borrow a selection of cream, bone, white, off-white, ivory or beige jackets from Richie Benaud to cover the offending area. Aggers thinks Mark Nicholas may own one. Back on the pitch, Fred sends down a maiden to Smith, and it's time for a drinks break.

1438 - SA 70-1 (19 overs)
After another Smith single, Monty gets a big cheer as he gets one to rip past Amla's outside edge. Who will triumph in this battle of the beards? Amla is beaten again off the last ball.

1435 - SA 69-1 (18 overs)
Flintoff is straight in with some "Beardline" bowling, sending in a first-ball bouncer to the splendidly-bearded new batsman Hashim Amla. But the number three is off the mark with a square-driven three. Smith pinches the strike in his usual fashion.

Wicket falls
1431 - WICKET - McKenzie lbw b Flintoff 22 - SA 65-1 (17.3 overs)
McKenzie beautifully steers Flintoff for four - it's not so much a straight drive, more of a forward block with added "oomph". But astonishingly, McKenzie tries to duck a low yorker, it hits him on the boot without playing a shot and he's lbw! Rock and roll!

1428 - SA 61-0 (17 overs)
Smith turns Monty for a single to mid-wicket to bring up the fifty stand. The spinner's line and length is not quite up to scratch in this over as McKenzie works him away for a four past mid-off and a three to leg - then ump Aleem Dar sprints to the boundary to get a TV cameraman to remove a microphone poking up and blotting out part of the sightscreen. But Smith clearly has no problems with sight lines as he carves Monty for another four, this time through mid-wicket.

"Re: Andrew's wedding [1301 entry]. I am definitely within shouting distance, just the next state along in Maryland. That said, I hope the weather is better in Virginia for the big day. It has rained here for the last five hours solid. It's 8.10am and I am wondering if there is any point in me crafting some sort of rain dance to send the storm clouds towards Edgbaston? I would probably be arrested if I were to try. Imagine trying to explain cricket to a Maryland Trooper? How would one even try? Good luck Andrew."
Christian Reilly in the TMS inbox

1424 - SA 49-0 (16 overs)
The TMS team ponder Monty's positioning at deep backward square leg (DBSL) - is he there for a catch? Or to save runs? Anyhow, just a single to Smith from Flintoff's over as the Barmy Army (and their trumpeter) find their voice.

Alec Stewart
"Blowers didn't get any wickets for England in that commentary spell - he got four in one spell in the first innings, but England need a wicket now"
Alec Stewart on TMS

1420 - SA 48-0 (15 overs)
Monty has three close catchers on the off side for McKenzie as well as a short leg, and Tiny Tim appeals for a stumping as he whips the bails off while McKenzie plays a back-foot defensive stroke. He almost - but not quite - lifts his back foot off the ground, so it's an easy one for Gunner Gould in the third umpire's box. A maiden.

Text in your views on 81111
"Forget Simon Jones - Kabir Ali is your man!"
Stuart in Worcester, via text on 81111

1416 - SA 48-0 (14 overs)
Smith and McKenzie are the highest and third highest Test run-scorers this year, wouldn't you know - Virender Sehwag of India is second, KP is fourth and ABDV is fifth. Smith shoulders arms to Flintoff, who is bowling round the wicket to the left-hander. But Smith turns him to square leg for two, then punches a half-tracker back past the bowler for four.

"The baby from Family Guy [see 1155 entry] is Stewie Griffin"
Daniel in the TMS inbox


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