LONDON (Reuters) - South Africa went to lunch at 323 for eight for in reply to England’s 458 on the third day of the first test at Lord‘s.
It left the home side in a good position despite not having things all their own way in a session in which three wickets fell for 109 runs.
England briefly delayed taking the new ball on a dry pitch showing some cracks, but then failed to make best use of it as Quinton De Kock knocked Stuart Broad out of the attack in making the second fastest 50 in a test at the ground.
Vernon Philander helped him produce a half-century partnership for the eighth wicket at almost a run-a-ball but shortly before the interval De Kock fell for 51.
Spinners Liam Dawson and Moeen Ali took a wicket in successive overs after the overnight batsmen Temba Bavuma and
nightwatchman Kagiso Rabada had played out the first 10 overs of the day.
Rabada, who is suspended for the second test starting next Friday, was first to go, edging to wicket-keeper Jonny Bairstow to give Liam Dawson his first test wicket in England.
He had made a useful 27.
In the next over Ali captured his third wicket when Bavuma, having made 59 off 130 balls, was taken at slip by Ben Stokes via a slight deflection off Bairstow’s thigh.
Disappointment led to confusion for Bavuma, who headed off in the wrong direction for the pavilion before realising his error.
Sharp turn from Ali that brought his dismissal encouraged England to hold off from taking the new ball immediately but new captain Joe Root waited only two more overs before calling for pacemen Jimmy Anderson and Broad.
Anderson immediately troubled the batsmen, as well as catching Vernon Philander a painful blow on the hand that required treatment.
Broad was more wayward, conceding 20 runs from his first two overs, including three successive boundaries by De Kock.
Another four by the same batsman off Broad took South Africa past 300 and raised a 50 partnership from only 57 balls.
Broad was withdrawn after conceding 35 from his four overs.
Ali was recalled in his place and sent to the ropes to give De Koch his 50 off only 36 balls but Stokes then took a fine low catch to dismiss him off Anderson for 51.
At lunch Phialnder was unbeaten on 21 with Keshav Maharaj on five.
Reporting by Steve Tongue; editing by Clare Lovell