Well, Kevin Pietersen shows again that he’s never more dangerous than when he almost gets run out getting off the mark. A masterful innings against the “country of his birth” as the Sky commentators keep referring to his opponents.
But a lot of credit must also go to Ian Bell, who came into this game with his place under threat despite the fact that he’s the most glorious batsman to watch in action in the England top six – except perhaps when Vaughanie’s at his cover-driving, swivel-pulling best- and went off at a right old rate, giving the team momentum just when it was necessary after the fall of three quick wickets before seamlessly slipping back into the chorus once Pietersen found his voice.
It’s to be hoped that Bell can go on tomorrow and reach the hundred he deserves and which all of us who salivate when he’s on top of his game switch on to see.
The only bloke I feel sorry for is Owais Shah. Every time he thinks he might be back in with a chance of proving his worth over a period of games, the man whose place is most under pressure comes up trumps.
And if Collingwood fails, it looks like his place has been earmarked for the returning Andrew Flintoff.
South Africa will probably feel a bit down about their bowling performances today but they have too many talented individuals not to come good at some point in this series – and will be a handful on pitches offering a little bit more to their pacemen. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised to see them run through England at least once – let’s just hope, after the good start today, it’s not tomorrow