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South Africa reduce England to 100-5 at lunch on first day at Lord's

LONDON: 'Bazball' was put on the backburner as South Africa's seamers made inroads into England's top order and despite a half-century for Ollie Pope reduced the home side to 100 for five at lunch on the opening day of the first test at Lord's on Wednesday (Aug 17).

Pope is unbeaten on 51 and will resume in the afternoon session with Ben Foakes after England lost captain Ben Stokes with the final delivery before the interval.

Stokes had looked to attack the bowling and reached 20 from 30 balls before he was caught by third slip Keegan Petersen off seamer Anrich Nortje (2-37).

South Africa won the toss and elected to bowl under overcast skies, with Stokes conceding at the toss he would have done the same.

It was perfect conditions for the tourists' venomous four-prong pace attack on a wicket that looks a little 'two-paced', with deliveries rising off a surprising length and making it difficult for the batsmen to feel confident of their strokeplay.

Kagiso Rabada (2-26), who was an injury doubt going into the game, made an excellent start, dismissing both England openers cheaply to catches behind the wicket.

Alex Lees (5) went too hard at a delivery just outside his off-stump and was caught comfortably by wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne, while Zak Crawley (9) edged Radaba to a diving Aiden Markram at second slip.

Crawley now has single figures in eight of his last 11 test innings, with former England batsman Mark Butcher suggesting in Sky Sports coverage of the test that the selectors were "cruel" to keep playing him.

Joe Root (8) scored a superb unbeaten century at Lord's earlier this summer but could not replicate that as he was trapped leg before wicket by left-arm seamer Marco Jansen, the in-swinging ball shown to be clipping the leg stump.

Jonny Bairstow has also had a golden summer but he produced a shot to forget when he missed a straight delivery from Nortje and was bowled for a duck.

The match is the first of three tests in the series, with matches to be played at Old Trafford (Aug. 25-29) and The Oval (Sep 8-12).

Source: Reuters

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