England’s new Test skipper Joe Root would have been disappointed after the right-hander fell short of a double hundred on Day 2 of the first Test against South Africa at Lord’s on Friday.
Continuing from his overnight score of 184, Root managed to add just 6 more runs to his score before Morkel removed the captain after he gave a sitter to Quinton de Kock behind the stumps. This could have been Root’s third double hundred in Test cricket. He first scored 200* in 2014 against Sri Lanka at Lord’s while smashed his career-best of 254 against Pakistan in Manchester in 2016.
Earlier, on first day England, after electing to bat, were under early pressure after they were reduced to 4/76. Wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow was the last batsman to be dismissed before Root and all-rounder Ben Stokes chipped in with a stand of 114 runs for the fifth wicket and did the repair job for the hosts.
Stokes was then undone by Kagiso Rabada for 56 but England took control of proceedings the moment Moeen Ali walked out to bat.
Ali came in at number seven and along with the captain made sure that the hosts don’t lose any more wickets. The left-right batting combination of Root and Ali compiled a total of 167 runs to end England’s first day at 357/5.
For South Africa, it was their pacers who were among the wickets. Both Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel started off the proceedings well and continuously asked questions with their line, length and pace. Philander bagged three wickets while Morkel and Rabada got a wicket apiece.