South Africa first innings 86-1 (Hashim Amla 47*, Graeme Smith 37*, James Anderson 1-27) trail England first innings 385 (Alastair Cook 115, Jonathan Trott 71, Matt Prior 60, Morne Morkel 4-72) by 299 runs.
The South African bowlers led by Morne Morkel restricted England from a threatening total as Hashim Amla and Graeme Smith consolidated with the bat on day two.
England was bowled out for 385 runs in 125.5 overs in their first and South Africa responded with 86 for the loss of one wicket while consuming 37 overs.
The second day’s play came to an end on Friday, July 20, 2012, at Kennington Oval, London.
Earlier, England initiated the second day at 267-3 wickets in 90 overs, Alastair Cook and Ian Bell were unbeaten for 114 and 10 runs respectively. The home side added just four runs in the overnight total when Cook was clean bowled by Dale Steyn on the fourth ball of the 93rd over for 115 runs. They faced another wallop when the new comer Ravi Bopara went back to the pavilion for a duck in the 95th over.
Matt Prior came in next, joined in with Bell and they could manage just one run in the next three overs as the first hit two fours in the following couple of overs. Jacques Kallis dislodged the bail of Ian Bell on the fourth ball of the 101st over for 13 runs and the sixth wicket of England was gone at 284.
Prior took charge of the situation by playing positive cricket with a nominal support from the incoming batsmen. He scored nine runs in the 110th over with two rolling boundaries and achieved his fifty on the first ball of the 120th over with a four. Prior became the ninth victim after scoring useful 60 runs off 90 balls with 9 fours as the innings of England was folded back for 385 runs after utilising 125.5 overs.
Morne Morkel was the top wicket taker with four, Dale Steyn and Jacques Kallis shared two each whereas Vernon and Imran Tahir held one wicket each.
South Africa has a disastrous start by losing their opener, Alviro Petersen, when he was declared leg before wicket off James Anderson without opening his account. The wicket fell on the fourth ball of the third over as the prolific scorer of the Proteas, Hashim Amla took guards in the centre and got together with his skipper, Graeme Smith.
The duo did not take any undue risks and the visitors scored just five runs in the first five overs. Smith dispatched the first four of the innings in the next over as Amla remained watchful until the end of the 10th over by scoring just two runs off 22 deliveries he faced. Amla opened his shoulders in the 11th over with two consecutive fours as rain interrupted play from 4.10pm to 5.55pm.
The two batsmen remained composed and crept to first fifty of the innings in 22 overs. Hashim Amla was the most aggressive of the two and got the boundaries on a regular interval as Graeme Smith secured his end watchfully. South Africa scored 86 runs with nine wickets in hand at stumps on day two. Hashim Amla occupied his crease with 47 off 97 balls with 6 fours whereas Graeme Smith was unbeaten for 37 from 118 deliveries comprising 4 fours.
South Africa can be in a dictating position if they play out the day three with three to four wickets still in hand whereas England will try to get an early breakthrough to get hold of the game.