South Africa win toss and bat against England in second Test

Nottingham (United Kingdom) (AFP) –


South Africa captain Faf du Plessis won the toss and elected to bat in the second Test against England at Trent Bridge on Friday.

The ground has a reputation for aiding swing bowlers and with the grey skies overhead offering the promise of assistance to the quicks, Du Plessis admitted at the toss: "It's a tricky decision because there's clouds in the sky.

"The first hour will be a challenge but we'll be ready for it."

England captain Joe Root, fresh from scoring 190 in his first Test as skipper as the hosts won by 211 runs inside four days at Lord's last week to go 1-0 up in the four-match series, was happy with Du Plessis's decision.

"I'd have had a bowl," said Root.

"Hopefully the cloud cover will bring our seamers into the game. If you look at the bowlers' previous performances at this venue, they've had a lot of success."

England fielded the same side that won at Lord's, with Root having confirmed his XI on Thursday.

South Africa, however, made three changes.

Regular captain Du Plessis, who did not play at Lord's following the birth of his first child, returned in place of struggling fellow batsman JP Duminy.

Since his 155 against Sri Lanka at Johannesburg's Wanderers in January, Duminy has averaged 17 in four Tests, with a top score of just 39.

Fast bowler Duanne Olivier, playing in his second Test, started in place of Kagiso Rabada, suspended from this match as a result of swearing at England all-rounder Ben Stokes at Lord's.

Meanwhile the Proteas bolstered their attack by bringing in pace-bowling all-rounder Chris Morris for Theunis de Bruyn.

This is England's first Test at Trent Bridge since their 2015 Ashes-clinching win when paceman Stuart Broad took eight for 15 on his Nottinghamshire home ground as Australia collapsed to 60 all out on the opening morning.

England have not lost a Test at Trent Bridge in a decade.

South Africa, however, have a proud away Test record. In their past 19 series spanning some 10 years on the road, they've won 13, drawn five and lost just one -- in India in 2015/16.


England: Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Gary Ballance, Joe Root (capt), Jonny Bairstow (wkt), Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Liam Dawson, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Mark Wood

South Africa: Heino Kuhn, Dean Elgar, Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock (wkt), Faf du Plessis (capt), Temba Bavuma, Vernon Philander, Chris Morris, Keshav Maharaj, Morne Morkel, Duanne Olivier

Umpires: Simon Fry (AUS), Paul Reiffel (AUS)

TV umpire: S Ravi (IND)

Match referee: Jeff Crowe (NZL)