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Stokes and Foakes put England in control

Skipper Ben Stokes was on 98 at tea as he led a dominant England to a lead of 157 runs over South Africa on the second day of the second Test.

England were 5 for 308 with Stokes two short of his 12th Test century, having played the lead role in a 161-run partnership with Ben Foakes (61) at Old Trafford on Friday.

The pair came together after South African quick bowler Anrich Nortje struck twice to remove both England’s overnight batsmen during an outstanding opening spell in the morning session.

Jonny Bairstow fell one run short of his half century, with Nortje finding some reverse swing to entice the Yorkshireman to edge to Sarel Erwee at first slip.

Another fine delivery ended the solid contribution of 38 from under-scrutiny England opening batsman Zak Crawley, with Nortje’s perfect line inducing an edge to keeper Kyle Verreynne.

That meant England were on 5 for 147, still four runs behind South Africa’s first innings total. But Stokes and Foakes then batted positively before lunch to begin building the lead.

Stokes showed his intent by hitting spinner Simon Harmer over midwicket for six, while Keshav Maharaj had an lbw decision against Foakes go in his favour, only for it to be overturned on review.

After lunch Stokes brought up his half-century by hitting Harmer over mid-on into the England dressing room but he kept his aggression in check for most of his innings.

The pair scored at a respectable but not particularly brisk rate of 96 runs in 30 overs in the afternoon session.

South Africa lead the three test series 1-0 after their victory in the opening match at Lord’s.

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