Tag Archives: umpire

Andy Murray beats Carlos Berlocq in straight sets to march into Indian Wells quarter-finals

Murray silences Berlocq with straight sets victory to march into Indian Wells last eight

By
Mike Dickson

PUBLISHED:

02:22 GMT, 14 March 2013

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UPDATED:

06:07 GMT, 14 March 2013

Andy Murray fought out a niggly battle that did little to enhance relations between Britain and Argentina as he struggled to overcome the grunting Carlos Berlocq to reach the last eight of the BNP Paribas Open.

Amid accusations of deliberate stalling across the net and complaints to the umpire about the South American’s varied volume of lingering growl Murray eventually got the better of him in an ill-tempered affair, winning through 7-6 6-4 in an hour and 55 minutes.

He now meets another Argentinian in his fellow US Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro, and will be relieved that he does not have to listen the ghastly soundtrack of Berlocq, which he described as ‘the worst I’ve ever heard on the men’s tour.'

On a run: Andy Murray sailed past Carlos Berlocq and into the quarter-finals

On a run: Andy Murray sailed past Carlos Berlocq and into the quarter-finals

Murray was particularly aggrieved that he was being warned about time violations between points while having to put up baritone groan of his muscular opponent.

'I’ve never experienced before when I’ve had to speak to an umpire about it,' he said. 'I’ve never found it to be that off-putting. But if it’s going to be suggested that I’m using gamesmanship by taking too long between points then you can’t be making noises like that on court. He was still making a noise when I was hitting the ball, it’s annoying. There was silence and then it was extremely loud, that’s off-putting.'

You wish other players would speak up against the habit, which is more associated with the women’s tour, but they rarely do.

As Murray admitted afterwards, he will have to play better if he is to progress further. 'It wasn’t the prettiest match and I’ve got to improve on it, but conditions were quite tough,' he said. 'When we went out there it was bright and in the 90s and the ball was bouncing very high, but as it got cooler and the sun went down my timing got better.'

Hot streak: Murray is enjoying his best run of results at Indian Wells

Hot streak: Murray is enjoying his best run of results at Indian Wells

Certainly you would not have expected Berlocq – happiest on clay, ranked 85 and never having been past the second round of a Grand Slam – to mount such a challenge, but he went for broke and hit some glorious winners to discomfort his opponent.

Having had six weeks off after the Australian Open Murray is yet to look entirely into his rhtythm at this tournament, where he has struggled before, although the fact is he is through to the last eight for the loss of just one set.

The only thing that will linger about the match was the bad blood that developed between the players from early in the first set onwards. Murray usually only gets cross with himself and rarely falls out with opponents, but he did not enjoy the way the barrel-chested Berlocq played the game and did not hide his feelings.

Having started in awkward conditions of glaring sun and mixed shadows across the court, he complained to his box – that contained his regular celebrity supporter Kevin Spacey – that 'I can’t see the ball!' as breaks were exchanged.

Outgunned: Argentine Berlocq was swatted aside by the world No 3

Outgunned: Argentine Berlocq was swatted aside by the world No 3

In the tenth game the two players swapped accusations that they were deliberately stalling, umpire Steve Ulrich taking Murray’s side. Playing very conservatively he was broken, but broke back in the next game and gave a huge ‘C’mon!’ and fist pump in Berlocq’s face at the net.

The tiebreak was a tense affair, settled at 6-4 when a scrambling Murray sent up a high lob and the Argentinian blasted an overhead long.

By now the 25 year-old Scot was getting very frustrated with Berlocq’s grunt/growl, as offensive as anything you hear in the women’s game. He complained early in the second set to Ulrich, saying it was ‘outrageous.’

Murray, whose forehand never fired and whose serve was more tentative than usual, could not hold on to an early break as Berlocq continued to hit out with massive, heavily spun groundstrokes.

Finally he got ahead with a backhand lob to break for 4-3, and from there just about managed to serve it out, although not before he had to save another break point at 5-3.

No, it was not pretty, but it got the job done.

Australian Open 2013: Victoria Azarenka wins first round

Azarenka not firing on all cylinders but world No 1 battles through opening test

By
Jon Fisher, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

04:01 GMT, 15 January 2013

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UPDATED:

04:37 GMT, 15 January 2013

Top seed Victoria Azarenka survived a second-set scare to see off Monica Niculescu in the first round of the Australian Open.

Having cruised through the opener Azarenka's game inexplicably came off the rails in the second before she reasserted her superiority to win 6-1 6-4.

It seemed plain sailing for the defending champion on Rod Laver Arena as she raced into a 4-0 lead, seemingly at ease with her own game and that of her opponent, whose quirky sliced forehand marks her out from the rest of the crowd in the women's game.

Victoria Azarenka

Victoria Azarenka

Defending champion: Victoria Azarenka survived a wobble in the second set to beat Monica Niculescu

A minor blip saw Niculescu break back but the Belarusian simply raised her level once again to take the first set in 31 minutes.

There appeared little chance of a Niculescu comeback but the Romanian surprised everyone inside Rod Laver Arena by swiftly establishing a 3-0 advantage. It almost became 4-0 but Azarenka clung grimly on to her serve by staving off two break points.

It proved a turning point as the world No 1, roared on by close friend Redfoo from the band LMFAO, hit back.

Watching brief: Stefan 'Redfoo' Gordy of LMFAO watches Azarenka and Niculescu in Melbourne

Watching brief: Stefan 'Redfoo' Gordy of LMFAO watches Azarenka and Niculescu in Melbourne

She drew level at 3-3, prompting a frustrated Niculescu to crack her racket into the court – an act which earned her a warning from the chair umpire.

Azarenka then broke again for 5-4 as Niculescu's challenge waned and she served it out to advance.

It was her first appearance on RLA since her thrashing of Maria Sharapova in last year's final and Azarenka admitted she was pleased to have avoided an embarrassing return.

Game over: In the end,, world No 1 Azarenka had too much in her locker for Niculescu

Game over: In the end,, world No 1 Azarenka had too much in her locker for Niculescu

Monica Niculescu

'It's great to be back, there were a lot of overwhelming emotions out there,' she said.

'I started really well but the second set was a struggle. I am pleased to get through.'

Azarenka had to pull out of the warm-up event in Brisbane due to an infected toe but she insists the injury is now behind her.

She added: 'I am running without pain and am just trying to focus on the next two weeks.'

BUMBLE"S TEST DIARY: I"ve done "a Trott" and was not proud of it, but I"m less of a fan of

BUMBLE'S TEST DIARY: I've done 'a Trott' and was not proud of it, but I'm less of a fan of Captain Beefheart

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UPDATED:

15:43 GMT, 16 December 2012

Trott's shot was legal but against the spirit of the game, I'm sure he regretted it – just like I did

Jonathan Trott smacking that Jadeja delivery for four was not the right thing to do, it was against the spirit of the game. I did it once, thought it was a bit of laugh, but I regretted it straight away. The laws of the game say Trott had every right to hit it but the best thing would have been for the umpire to call dead ball.

Trott's shot was legal: Jonathan Trott was within his rights to hit Jadeja's delivery

Trott's shot was legal: Jonathan Trott was within his rights to hit Jadeja's delivery

India and Kohli need to remember it was their decision not to have DRS

India also thought they had Trott caught behind but the pictures showed he had not hit the ball. The BCCI insist they do not want the Decision Review System, they say they want the umpire’s decision to be final – well, could they please tell their own players, especially Mr Virat Kohli I have no problem with Kohli talking to Trott, he stands on his two feet there, but why he is constantly engaging the umpires is beyond me. I’ve seen enough of Kohli now (in England and India) to have him down as a jumped-up little twerp…and he may be the next India captain! If he confronted me – like he did the umpires – in Civvy Street, he’d better have something to back it up.

Keep your mouth shut: Virat Kohli must learn to not harass umpires

Keep your mouth shut: Virat Kohli must learn to not harass umpires

Time to bring in the card system – just like in football

My suggestion to the ICC that we should have yellow and red cards will not go away. Spectators watching will have been left wondering what was going on (and we may have to wait until the end of the game for the match referee’s decision) but in my system Kohli would have got a yellow card and everyone in the ground (and watching at home) would have been in the know.

Visible warnings: Cricket needs red and yellow cards - just like football

Visible warnings: Cricket needs red and yellow cards – just like football

Trott and Bell need to push on after early blockathon

I was nervous when England started batting when they got their tactics wrong, opting for a blockathon, but at the end of the day’s play Trott and Ian Bell had moved things on. England need to bat until 20 minutes after lunch and they will have won the series. The final-day situation is an ideal opportunity for the likes of Trott and Bell to be selfish and play for themselves. Trott will be desperate for a century while Bell can turn round what has so far been a terrible tour.

Time to cash in: Ian Bell needs runs to make up for his poor tour so far

Time to cash in: Ian Bell needs runs to make up for his poor tour so far

Compton must start scoring of risk Ashes place

Nick Compton’s position intrigues me. He is going along OK but he has got to find a way of turning survival into scoring. He’ll get another chance in New Zealand but at times it can be a bit of an ordeal watching him bat. If you want an early indicator for the Ashes next summer, I think England want to elevate Joe Root to open alongside Alastair Cook and bring in Jonny Bairstow at No 6, which means Compton, Eoin Morgan and Samit Patel will miss out.

Joe Root

Nick Compton

Time for a change: Nick Compton needs to get runs or Joe Root should be promoted to open for the Ashes

Captain Beefheart He's absolute pants

I was given a Captain Beefheart CD by my boss at Sky. He said it’s ‘very difficult listening but once you’ve heard it once or twice you’ll love it’. I didn’t have the heart to ask him: ‘Who the heck is Captain Beefheart!’ After some quick research with a journalistic colleague, we’ve concluded that he’s ‘absolute pants!’.

Not a fan: Captain Beefheart did not appeal to Bumble's musical taste

Not a fan: Captain Beefheart did not appeal to Bumble's musical taste

Top Spin at the Test: Compton is all out of glove as Tucker puts premature end to partnership

Top Spin at the Test: Tucker's luck for Nick as Compton is all out of glove

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UPDATED:

21:08 GMT, 6 December 2012

Nick Compton had already reached the non-striker’s end by the time umpire Rod Tucker — after a bizarre shake of the head — gave him out lbw on the sweep to Pragyan Ojha. But replays suggested Compton had gloved the ball and the batsman himself said later: ‘It hit my glove. It’s one of those things. I’m a bit disappointed, but from his position it was a very difficult decision, so that’s the way it goes.’

Openers look a dynamic duo

Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss are comfortably England’s most prolific opening pairing, adding 5,253 Test runs together in 132 innings at an average of 40, with 14 century stands. Cook and Compton have already put on 438 runs together at an average of nearly 110 in only three Tests. On only four occasions did Cook and Strauss put on more than the 165 managed yesterday between the new England captain and his equally new opening partner.

In the runs: Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss are England's most prolific openers

In the runs: Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss are England's most prolific openers

Finn delivers on demand

A glimpse of why England were so keen for Steven Finn to play from the start of the series. With MS Dhoni threatening to extend India’s first innings, Cook turned to Finn, who responded by removing him in his first over. The nature of the ball — dug in short of a length, before climbing to take the shoulder of the bat — was just how England imagined it before Finn picked up the thigh injury that ruled him out of the first two Tests.

Ashwin’s turn to look average

India may be wondering what has happened to Ravichandran Ashwin. Feted as a mystery spinner before the start of the series, he briefly appeared to fit the bill with two early wickets on the second evening at Ahmedabad. But since England’s first innings there, he has looked ordinary, taking only three more wickets by stumps on the second day at an average of 115. His line to the right-handers has been especially poor.

Panesar excels on the subcontinent

England would dearly love to pick Monty Panesar in every Test they play, home and away, but continue to regard him as an Asian specialist because of his non-existent batting and fallible fielding. But the two wickets he took on the second morning lifted his tally for the series to 15 at 20 apiece. Graeme Swann has managed 15 at 23 — but in one more Test. The other England bowlers combined, meanwhile, have picked up eight wickets between them, five going to Jimmy Anderson.

Spearheading the attack: Monty Panesar

Spearheading the attack: Monty Panesar (FILE PHOTO)

US Open 2012: Andy Murray to face Novak Djokovic in the final

Murray to face Djokovic in US Open final after defending champion crushes Ferrer

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UPDATED:

17:39 GMT, 9 September 2012

Andy Murray will face Novak Djokovic in the final of the US Open on Monday after the defending champion defeated David Ferrer in their
delayed semi-final in New York.

Fourth seed Ferrer had led 5-2 when play was suspended on Saturday but,
although he took the first set, Djokovic quickly hit back and wrapped up
a 2-6 6-1 6-4 6-2 victory after two hours and 32 minutes.

Enlarge

All the rage: Serbia's Novak Djokovic

All the rage: Serbia's Novak Djokovic

It will be the second grand slam final meeting between Murray and Djokovic after the Serb's crushing win at the Australian Open last year at the start of a sensational season that saw him pick up three slam titles.

He successfully defended his title in Melbourne this year, beating Murray and Rafael Nadal back-to-back in brutal five-setters, but Murray got some revenge with victory in the Olympic semi-final before going on to win the gold medal. Djokovic will play in his third consecutive US Open final and his seventh final out of the last nine grand slams.

He said: 'It's a huge relief to get through this match. David's a great competitor, he's one of the fittest guys on tour and he never gives up.

Under pressure: David Ferrer scrambles to hit a a return

Under pressure: David Ferrer scrambles to hit a a return

'We were all praying for less wind today. He handled the wind much
better than I did but I came in today as a different player and I'm just
really happy to get to another grand slam final.'

On facing Murray, the 25-year-old added: 'I don't think there is any
clear favourite. He's looking for his first title, I'm sure he's going
to be very motivated. I hope we can come up with the best tennis for
this crowd.'

Djokovic had looked completely out of sorts in the wind,
complaining to umpire Carlos Bernardes that the match should be
postponed.

Quiet please: Djokovic makes a point

Quiet please: Djokovic makes a point

He was lucky to get his wish, with organisers worried about the threat
of a tornado that did not materialise, and had they carried on the
result may well have been different.

But under blue skies and with only a little breeze, the defending
champion was back to the form that has made him unbeaten in grand slams
on hard courts for two years.

Ferrer served out the first set, the only set Djokovic has lost at the
tournament so far this year, but the Serb promptly reeled off the next
five games.

Actor Stanley Tucci

Will Ferrell

Star appeal: Actors Stanley Tucci and Will Ferrell watch the semi-final

Ferrer finally held to avoid a love set but, although he was trading
well with Djokovic in long rallies, the second seed always seemed to
have one more shot.

Djokovic broke early in the third set as well but Ferrer showed his
tenacity to hit back. The Spaniard was broken again in the seventh game,
though, and that proved to be the crucial moment.

Djokovic wrapped up the set and then all but sealed victory by winning
the first four games of the fourth. Ferrer dug in to ensure at least the
scoreline would be respectable but he was well beaten.

Murray has certainly had the better of the schedule and a day's rest,
but there is no doubt, whatever he says, that Djokovic will go into the
final as the man to beat.

US Open 2012: Andy Murray beats Tomas Berdych to reach final in New York

Murray blows Berdych away in windswept New York to breeze into US Open final

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UPDATED:

20:48 GMT, 8 September 2012

Andy Murray overcame Tomas Berdych and 'some of the hardest conditions I've ever played in' to reach his fifth grand slam final at the US Open.

A storm delayed the start of play and, although the rain cleared, an extremely strong wind blew the whole way through the match, disrupting play on numerous occasions and making life extremely tough for both players.

Roaring success: Andy Murray reached his second US Open final and fifth grand slam showpiece

Roaring success: Andy Murray reached his second US Open final and fifth grand slam showpiece

But, although Murray lost a tight
first set, it was he who coped with the conditions better, surviving a
fightback in the fourth set from Berdych to win 5-7, 6-2, 6-1, 7-6 (9/7)
in three hours and 58 minutes.

It will be the 25-year-old's second
consecutive grand slam final after his Wimbledon loss to Roger Federer
and his second US Open final, with his first experience of a major
showpiece coming here in 2008, when he also lost to Federer.

Beaten: Berdych lunges in vain as a shot from Murray whizzes past him

Beaten: Berdych lunges in vain as a shot from Murray whizzes past him

Talking about the conditions
afterwards to CBS, Murray said: 'You have to focus for every point. The
chairs were flying onto the court, it was hard to serve.

'It's some of the hardest conditions I've ever played in and I come from Scotland so that's saying something.'

Cool it: The umpire appeals for calm as Murray and Berdych argue at the net after the Scot's hat was blown off his head

Cool it: The umpire appeals for calm as Murray and Berdych argue at the net after the Scot's hat was blown off his head

He added: 'From the end of the first
set I was in control. At 3-0 in the fourth I had three break points, but
from the far side of the court it was very tough so I got broken in the
next game. I just tried to hang in there and I did a good job at the
end.'

The result also means Murray will
overtake Rafael Nadal to become the new world number three, but most
importantly it gives him the chance to claim his first grand slam title.

Nice finish: Murray wins a point with a cool shot at the net

Nice finish: Murray wins a point with a cool shot at the net

Murray will meet either defending
champion Novak Djokovic or Spain's David Ferrer in the final and, asked
if he feels this is his time after winning Olympic gold, Murray said: 'I
hope so. You can never say for sure, I know how hard these tournaments
are to win. David and Novak are top, top players.

'When the conditions are like this, anything could have happened. I'll give everything in the final.'

On the attack: Berdych won the first set, but Murray's nous won through

On the attack: The powerful Berdych won the first set, but Murray's nous won through

Serving up a treat: Murray

On top: Murray

Serving up a treat: Murray's craft and guile was there for all to see across four compelling sets

All smiles: Ivan Lendl shares a joke with Murray's girlfriend Kim Sears

All smiles: Ivan Lendl shares a joke with Murray's girlfriend Kim Sears

Blustery: Berdych observes as chairs and debris are sent in all directions by the wind

Blustery: Berdych observes as chairs and debris are sent in all directions by the wind

Windswept: Ball boys rush to pick up players' paraphernalia as strong winds take hold

Windswept: Ball boys rush to pick up players' paraphernalia as strong winds take hold

Keeping cool: Sean Connery was an involved spectator

Keeping cool: Sean Connery was an involved spectator

Eoin Morgan: I"d give up IPL for England Test return

I’d give up IPL for Test return, insists Morgan as England prepare for ODI series

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UPDATED:

22:48 GMT, 27 August 2012

The riches of the Indian Premier League were said by Andy Flower last week to be the 'catalyst' for the breakdown in Kevin Pietersen's relationship with England.

Eoin Morgan promises it won't distract him. Morgan is one of the few England players other than Pietersen who has proved attractive to IPL owners, even though he failed to play during his two-month stint with the Kolkata Knight Riders earlier this year.

That did not stop him earning around 220,000 for his eight weeks sitting on the Kolkata bench and spurning the chance to try to regain his lost Test place by working on his first-class game with Middlesex.

On the up: Morgan is keen for a return to the Test side

On the up: Morgan is keen for a return to the Test side

2nd one-day international

ENGLAND (probable): Cook (capt), Bell,Trott, Bopara, Morgan, Kieswetter (wkt), Woakes, Bresnan, Swann, Finn, Anderson.

SOUTH AFRICA (probable): Smith, Amla, Elgar, De Villiers (capt and wkt), Duminy, Du Plessis, McLaren, Parnell, Peterson, M Morkel, Tsotsobe.

Umpires: Rob Bailey (England) and Simon Taufel (Australia).

TV umpire: Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka).

Match referee: Andy Pycroft (Zimbabwe).

Venue: Ageas Bowl, Southampton, 1pm.

Yet, Morgan, the most important batting talent in an England one-day side who finally start their NatWest Series against South Africa on Tuesday at the Ageas Bowl, insists he will resist the lure of the East next year if there is any chance of returning to the Test middle order.

'I came across from Ireland as a 15-year-old to try to play Test cricket and it remains my priority,' said Morgan, who was dropped after scoring just 82 runs in six innings against Pakistan at the start of this year.

'I've had a little sniff of it and absolutely loved it. I was in the England team when we became No 1 in the world and nothing comes close to the experience of being in a winning Test side.

Outcast: Pietersen's chances of ending his exile remain remote

Outcast: Pietersen's chances of ending his exile remain remote

'If it came about that I was back in the Test team around the next IPL, I would be the happiest man in the world. And if I'm in the frame but not quite in the team, then I might have to look differently at whether I play the full IPL. I looked into that this year but I was a long way away after being dropped so I didn't investigate playing more county cricket too closely.'

If Pietersen is unable to bring his exile to an end before the Test trip to India in November – and chances of that remain remote – then Morgan will be hoping to claim the final batting place in the squad by spearheading England's attempt over four matches to at least remain on top of the one-day rankings.

Asset: Morgan is the most important batting talent in an England one-day side

Asset: Morgan is the most important batting talent in an England one-day side

Morgan has averaged only 30 in his 16 Tests – 10 fewer than his one-day mean – and struggled in the long game even before his ordeal at the hands of Pakistan.

But England still rate him very highly and have not discarded him from their Test thoughts, even though he has now fallen behind Jonny Bairstow, James Taylor and possibly Ravi Bopara in the pecking order.

'The route to the Test team came through one-day performances for me and the bigger picture for me remains Test cricket,' said Morgan, who has made two of his four one-day centuries at the Hampshire venue.

'I'm a better player now than I was at the start of the year. I think I've proved that in bursts. Hopefully, I can prove that again during this series.'

Pietersen played for Surrey at Taunton yesterday while England captain Andrew Strauss has extended his week’s holiday, so there has been little chance for the pair to thrash out the former’s problems.

Yet, Sportsmail understands England hope to be nearer to knowing whether they will be able to welcome Pietersen back by the end of this week.

They must move quickly because time is running out before they name their Test squad for India and their centrally contracted players before leaving for the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka on September 13.

England have not yet begun the process of renewing their contracts, which usually begin with informal one-on-one talks between Flower and each player.

Until Pietersen has had the chance of a full and frank exchange with his captain, he remains unlikely to get as far as contract discussions.

LIVE: England v South Africa, day five, third Test, Lord"s

LIVE: England v South Africa – the action on day five of the third Test at Lord's

|

UPDATED:

09:47 GMT, 20 August 2012

Stay up to date with all the action on day five of the third Test between England and South Africa with Sportsmail's
unrivalled team. We'll deliver over-by-over coverage as the action
unfolds at Lord's while our brilliant team of writers will update
with their insights from the ground. Email your thoughts to [email protected]

England v South Africa: Essentials

England: Andrew Strauss (c), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Ian Bell, James Taylor, Jonny Bairstow, Matt Prior (wkt), Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Steve Finn.

South Africa:
Graeme Smith (c), Alviro Petersen, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, AB De
Villiers (wkt), Jacques Rudolph, JP Duminy, Vernon Philander, Dale
Steyn, Morne Morkel, Imran Tahir.

Umpires: HDPK Dharmasena (Sri Lanka) and SJA Taufel (Australia)

TV umpire: RJ Tucker (Australia)

South Africa won the toss and elected to bat

First innings: South Africa 309, England 315

Second innings: South Africa 351

ENGLAND REQUIRE 346 RUNS TO WIN

Click here for a full scorecard

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10.47am: Here is what Sportsmail has to offer you today before the start of play at 11am…

Paul Newman's report on day four is here.

Nasser Hussain's view on England's predicament is here.

David Lloyd's alternative take on proceedings in Bumble at the Test is here.

And Lawrence Booth's Match Zone is here.

10.35am: So, this is it then, the outcome of the series and the world's No 1 Test status all comes down to what happens here on the final day of England's summer. The hosts need another 330 runs to win – and win they must if they are to remain at the top of world cricket. It is a very tall order for England, especially the way South Africa bowled last night and, in fact, all series long. It is not impossible though and, what is for sure, it will compelling stuff.

Early breakthrough: Philander removed both England openers

Early breakthrough: Philander removed both England openers

LIVE: England v South Africa: Day three, third Test, Lord"s

LIVE: England v South Africa – the action on day three of the third Test at Lord's

|

UPDATED:

10:25 GMT, 18 August 2012

Stay up to date with all the action on day three of the third Test between England and South Africa with Sportsmail's
unrivalled team. We'll deliver over-by-over coverage as the action
unfolds at Lord's while our brilliant team of writers will update
with their insights from the ground. Email your thoughts to [email protected]

England v South Africa: Essentials

England: Andrew Strauss (c), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Ian Bell, James Taylor, Jonny Bairstow, Matt Prior (wkt), Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Steve Finn.

South Africa: Graeme Smith (c), Alviro Petersen, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, AB De Villiers (wkt), Jacques Rudolph, JP Duminy, Vernon Philander, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Imran Tahir.

Umpires: HDPK Dharmasena (Sri Lanka) and SJA Taufel (Australia)

TV umpire: RJ Tucker (Australia)

South Africa won the toss and elected to bat.

First innings:

South Africa 309

Click here for a full scorecard

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78th over: England 219-5 (Bairstow 80, Prior 25)

If the 90s are nervy , what are the 80s Waity 80s As in you're waiting to get into the 90s Enough of this – Bairstow's wrist flick to the on side earns him two runs to take him into the 80s.

77th over: England 216-5 (Bairstow 78, Prior 24)

Kallis continues to huff and puff his way through six deliveries, Prior dabs one to long leg. And we edge ever closer to the new ball. That will be the litmus test for this partnership.

76th over: England 215-5 (Bairstow 78, Prior 23)

Shot! Bairstow loves it off his pads. Much like Jonathan Trott, you could say. Morkel goes full and straight and is whipped through square leg for the first boundary of the day… despite Imran Tahir's diving efforts.

75th over: England 211-5 (Bairstow 74, Prior 23)

The gentle hum of the chattering spectators and members reverberates round this famous old ground as the patrons ponder the forthcoming day's action. The murmur of chitter chatter seems to be unique to the Home of Cricket. or am I being unnecessarily romantic about the MCC I digress, Kallis returns with a maiden over.

74th over: England 211-5 (Bairstow 74, Prior 23)

Morne Morkel now. He was pretty good yesterday, wasn't he* It's a tidy start, angling into Matt Prior, and I'm waiting for the one to angle away, but it's too early for that kind of drama. Prior works towards cover for a single. *Don't get all po-faced about my 'he was pretty good' comment, I was being understated.

73rd over: England 210-5 (Bairstow 74, Prior 22)

New ball just eight overs away and thusly Graeme Smith asks Jacques Kallis to begin the attack for the Proteas. Kallis angles one into Bairstow's pads, he leans across and works the ball to midwicket for a couple to reduce England's deficit to double figures – 99 to be precise.

10.57: Bumble's just rung the bell to sound the start of the day's play. Here we go, the action is imminent. Excellent!

10.53: And while we wait for the players to make their way out, have a quick butcher's at David Lloyd's thoughts on day two. From Shaun Pollock's bell ringing woe to the price of sausage rolls.

10.51: And Nasser Hussain was effusive in his praise of the young boy Bairstow.

10.50: Jonny Bairstow was mighty impressive yesterday , leading some to say: KP who Bairstow was the toast of Lord's, says Sportsmail's Lawrence Booth.

10.48: An absolute belter of a day in leafy St John's Wood. One of those days that melts the tarmac down your road. Get the sunscreen on, maybe a glass of something fizzy in hand and enjoy the action. Today is designed for cricket.

10.46: Morning everyone and welcome to Sportsmail's coverage on day three of the vital third Test between the protagonists at the Home of Cricket – Lord's.

A finely poise match sees England still in with a shout of retaining the world No 1 status South Africa covet.

The hosts were firmly under the pump on day two, until a fine stand between Ian bell and Jonny Bairstow lent some credibility to the total which leaves them 101 shy of the Proteas first innings total of 309.

10.45am: Scorchio!

The home of cricket: England and South Africa resume battle on day three at Lord's

The home of cricket: England and South Africa resume battle on day three at Lord's

England v South Africa: Jonny Bairstow hits half century as host dig in

Bairstow hits half century as England dig in after top order wobble

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UPDATED:

17:35 GMT, 17 August 2012

Jonny Bairstow's half century saved England after a top order collapse threatened to take the third and final Test out of the hosts hands.

Andrew Strauss was dismissed on the stroke of lunch and Jonathan Trott, Alistair Cook and James Taylor soon followed him back to the pavilion.

But Ian Bell and Bairstow dug in and put on a partnership of 124 to leave England on 208-5 at stumps on day two as they chased South Africa's total of 309.

More to follow…

Fightback: Ian Bell (left) and Jonny Bairstow (right) put on a partnership of 124 to help England after an early wobble

Fightback: Ian Bell (left) and Jonny Bairstow (right) put on a partnership of 124 to help England after an early wobble

ENGLAND v SOUTH AFRICA

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Finding his feet: Bairstow played well as England looked to chase down South Africa's first innings total

Finding his feet: Bairstow played well as England looked to chase down South Africa's first innings total

First to go: England captain Andrew Strauss was dismissed just before lunch

First to go: England captain Andrew Strauss was dismissed just before lunch

Going to the video: Jonathan Trott reacts as he's given out by the 3rd umpire

Going to the video: Jonathan Trott reacts as he's given out by the 3rd umpire

Short stuff: Ian Bell is hit by a short delivery from South Africa's Morne Morkel

Short stuff: Ian Bell is hit by a short delivery from South Africa's Morne Morkel

Watching on: Strauss, coach Andy Flower, Trott, and Alastair Cook look on from the team balcony after they were dismissed

Watching on: Strauss, coach Andy Flower, Trott, and Alastair Cook look on from the team balcony after they were dismissed

That is out: Morne Morkel takes the wicket of James Taylor

That is out: Morne Morkel takes the wicket of James Taylor