LONDON (AP) England advanced to 269-6 at lunch on the second day of the third test against South Africa on Friday, with Ben Stokes striking a belligerent 64 not out and sharing a 75-run partnership with Jonny Bairstow.
Two wickets fell in the session, those of opener Alastair Cook, who resumed on 82 looking for his 31st test century, and Bairstow. Cook had only added six runs when he was trapped leg before by Morne Morkel.
Cook asked for a review immediately on being given out, thinking the ball was high, but replays showed it clipping the bails and England looked vulnerable on 183-5.
Vernon Philander, the pick of South Africa’s bowling on the first day at the Oval, sent down five overs but then left the field again for treatment, apparently for a stomach ailment that also forced him off the field on the first day.
Stokes and Bairstow looked comfortable against the remaining bowlers until the new ball was taken 20 minutes before lunch, taking the score to 258.
With the swinging ball, Kagiso Rabada induced an edge from Bairstow to second slip, where captain Faf du Plessis took the catch. Bairstow scored 36 in 52 balls.
England went to lunch with Stokes and Moeen Ali (10 not out) at the crease.
The four-match series is tied 1-1.