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Philander makes England's task harder

Investec Test Series

Keep up to date with England's Investec Test Series against South Africa with our in-depth day-by-day reports - plus all the reaction, highlights and photos

Vernon Philander continued to trouble England by removing their opening batsmen as the hosts began to chase 346 to share the Investec Series and stop South Africa from taking their International Cricket Council number-one ranking tomorrow.

The right-arm seamer, who took two economical first-innings wickets and hit 96 runs in the game, trapped Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss plumb in front to leave England’s year-long stay at the top in the balance.

Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell dug in under gloriously sunny evening skies to close on 16 for two, leaving 330 required tomorrow when the forecast is for more sun without being quite as hot as today.

South Africa & Andrew Strauss

England set themselves an achievable target, given the full day’s play expected to be available tomorrow, by dismissing the Proteas for 351 midway through the evening session.

Strauss’ side were held up chiefly by two partnerships, one of 95 between assured centurion Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers and another worth 54 shared by JP Duminy and Philander.

Between those, Steven Finn produced an inspired spell of 3-23 in seven overs to bowl Amla for 121 and have de Villiers and Jacques Rudolph caught at slip for 43 and 11 respectively. Finn finished with 4-74.

Amla resumed today on 57 of 145 for three and Stuart Broad took the only wicket of the morning session, having nightwatchman Dale Steyn caught at short-leg.

After tea, James Anderson had Philander held at cover-point for 35 and yorked last man Imran Tahir either side of Matt Prior smartly stumping Morne Morkel off Graeme Swann. Duminy was unbeaten on 26.

Evening Session

Watch highlights of the evening session on day four at Lord's

6:58pm - Ticket details for tomorrow have been announced. They will be £20 for adults, £10 for over-65s and free for under-16s. Tickets will be available from 9am from the north and east gates at Lord’s by cash only. Get here early to avoid disappointment.

6:50pm - STUMPS: Eng 16/2; Trott 6, Bell 4 - Steyn sends down an economical last over, but Trott and Bell survive to limit Philander’s damage. England need 330 more to win.

6:43pm - Steyn makes it three straight maidens, but Bell gets two to midwicket off Morkel from the next ball.

6:38pm - Morkel has replaced Philander from the Pavilion End and follows Steyn’s maiden to Trott with one of his own to Bell. The batsmen understandably seem to be playing for stumps.

Graeme Smith, AB de Villiers, Jacques Rudolp & Vernon Philander

6:25pm - With two right-handers in, Dale Steyn takes over from Morkel. Trott and Bell resist Philander and Steyn, but run-scoring is at a premium. Play is set to continue until 6:50pm.

6:08pm - WICKET! Strauss lbw Philander 1; Eng 6/2 - The left-hander makes a misjudgment and leaves a ball that hits him on the back pad. Like Cook’s dismissal, England do not review and Philander completes a wicket-maiden. The hosts, who have Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell at the crease, cannot afford to lose another wicket this evening.

5:57pm - WICKET! Cook lbw Philander 3; Eng 5/1 - Terrible start for England as the left-hander is trapped plumb in front. Strauss told him not to review.

5:54pm - Morne Morkel begins from the Nursery End with a wide. Andrew Strauss gets going with a single to midwicket and Alastair Cook with three to a vacant fine-leg.

South Africa Innnings

5:40pm - WICKET! Tahir b Anderson 1; SA 351ao - Anderson comprehensively yorks the right-hander to end the innings, which is greeted by a huge cheer from the crowd. England need 346 to win. Can they do it?

James Anderson & Imran Tahir

5:37pm - Swann turns one sharply past Duminy. It beats keeper and slip for a bye which brings up South Africa’s 350.

5:31pm - WICKET! Morkel st Prior b Swann 9; SA 348/9 - The spinner beats Morkel who relaxes after missing the ball, first planting his front foot out of the crease and then lifting his back foot. Matt Prior pounces and, after several referrals, the left-hander is given out.

5:20pm - Morkel gets a risky, airborne four just past midwicket off Swann and drinks are taken at the end of the over.

5:16pm - REVIEW - Following Swann’s maiden to Duminy, Anderson bounces Morne Morkel who gets something on it and is given out caught behind. The left-hander reviews and replays show the ball hit only the grille of the helmet.

5:05pm - WICKET! Philander c Bairstow b Anderson 35; SA 336/8 - Anderson gets lucky as Philander cuts a long-hop to cover point. If England can take the last two wickets cheaply, they will have a sporting chance of victory.

5pm - James Anderson takes over from Finn and bowls a maiden to Duminy. Philander then lifts Swann to leg for four to bring up the fifty partnership.

4:49pm - Philander cuts Finn in front of square for four. Like in the first innings, when he joint top-scored with 61, Philander is frustrating England.

4:43pm - Philander flaps at a Finn bouncer, a risky shot considering there are two fielders deep in the leg side.

4:37pm - Swann and Finn bowl another tight over each, the latter’s a maiden. If they cannot take a wicket, keeping runs in short supply is crucial. There is still plenty of time in this game for all results.

4:26pm - Steven Finn is back into the attack from the Pavilion End and attempts a yorker first ball to Vernon Philander, but it turns out to be a low full-toss which the right-hander clips to the midwicket boundary.

4:22pm - Graeme Swann begins the evening session with a maiden from the Nursery End to JP Duminy, including one that beats the left-hander’s outside edge.

Afternoon Session

Watch highlights of the afternoon session on day four at Lord's

4:02pm - TEA: SA 306/7; Duminy 17, Philander 11 - South Africa extend their lead to 300 in the last over of the afternoon, bowled by Broad. This game is still on a knife edge.

3:53pm - Philander edges Broad low between second and fourth slip for four. Had there been a third slip, it would have fallen short. Philander ends the over by straight-driving four more to bring up the 300.

3:49pm - Duminy advances to Swann and clips a four through midwicket.

3:41pm - Broad replaces Finn at the Pavilion End and Philander gets off the mark with a well-taken quick single to Alastair Cook, whose shy at the non-striker’s stumps just misses. For anyone expecting the tea break to be soon, it has been put back until 4pm due the rain-extended lunch interval.

Steven Finn & England

3:36pm - Swann again puts together consecutive maidens, between which Duminy cuts Finn for four.

3:24pm - WICKET! Rudolph c Prior b Finn 11; SA 282/7 - Finn is at it again when he finds the left-hander’s edge and Prior holds a regulation catch. England are now into the non-specialist batsmen.

3:23pm - Rudolph thick-edges Swann past Strauss at slip, which can only be considered a half-chance. Duminy punishes a Swann full-toss by smashing it to the midwicket boundary and Rudolph then cuts Finn for four.

3:15pm - Duminy gets off the mark with an edged four low between slip and gully. Finn responds by beating the left-hander’s edge.

3:11pm - Matt Prior is very close to stumping Rudolph, who lifts his back foot for a split second, in another Swann maiden.

3:09pm - Finn follows up with a maiden to JP Duminy. England are right up for this and an increasingly vocal crowd are behind them.

3:04pm - Swann, replacing Anderson, keeps the pressure on with a maiden to Rudolph, whose outside edge he beats with a fine ball.

2:57pm - WICKET! De Villiers c Strauss b Finn; SA 268/6 - Finn produces another fine delivery, which the right-hander edges to Andrew Strauss at first slip. England are right back in this game now with two new batsmen at the crease.

2:50pm - REVIEW - Anderson swings one into de Villiers’ pads and, when umpire Dharmasena declines the appeal, England review. Hawkeye shows the ball only just clipping the top of the stumps and the decision stands. The hosts have no reviews left.

2:47pm - Finn completes a wicket-maiden to new batsman Jacques Rudolph.

Hashim Amla

2:41pm - WICKET! Amla b Finn 121; SA 259/5 - Finn produces a sublime delivery just when England need it. He gets a good-length ball to seam up the slop and beats the right-hander’s outside edge to clip the top of off stump. Amla deservedly gets a rousing standing ovation.

2:39pm - Amla and de Villiers are rotating the strike effectively, typified by taking five singles from Anderson’s latest over.

2:33pm - Amla works Finn for two past mid-on to herald the Proteas’ 250. We are in to the seventh over with the new ball.

2:30pm - Anderson stems the run-flow with a maiden to de Villiers. Finn takes over from Broad.

2:25pm - Amla drives Broad with an open face for four and de Villiers pulls to the fine-leg rope. Runs are coming fairly quickly against the new ball.

2:20pm - Anderson gets one a good-length ball to rear at de Villiers, who does well to guide it safely past the slip cordon for two.

2:17pm - Amla drives Broad through the covers for three, again showing that this much relaid outfield is not as fast as usual.

2:11pm - James Anderson comes into the attack from the Nursery End and, like Broad before him, produces a tight over.

AB de Villiers & Hashim Amla

2:04pm - England take the new ball straight away and Stuart Broad makes first use from the Pavilion End.

1:57pm - CENTURY! Amla (182b 9x4 0x6) - Hashim Amla’s first four of the day is a cut behind square, which takes him to three figures. His celebrations are typically understated. England need to get rid of him soon.

1:53pm - We are under way again, with Graeme Swann bowling the remaining two balls of his over. There are three overs left until the new ball is available.

1:30pm - The shower has passed, the covers are coming off and play is due to resume at 1:55pm with tea at 4pm and the scheduled close 6:20pm.

Morning Session

Watch highlights of the morning session on day four at Lord's

12:55pm - RAIN STOPS PLAY/LUNCH: SA 214/4; Amla 94, de Villiers 24 - A light shower midway through Swann’s over forces an early lunch.

Hashim Amla

12:49pm - Finn somewhat surprisingly, given the fading light, replaces Trott. However, the floodlights have taken full effect, although Amla appears to think it is dark enough to go off.

12:45pm - The dark cloud is rolling in and the floodlights have been turned on. It really is gloomy and, perhaps to encourage the umpires to keep the players on, Swann replaces Anderson from the Pavilion End. Amla takes a single to leg to bring up the fifty partnership.

12:42pm - Amla edges Trott just short of Swann at a solitary slip and a misfield allows the batsman to take two and move to 90.

12:36pm - Jonathan Trott has taken over from Swann at the Nursery End and concedes just a single from his first over. The second new ball is due in eight overs.

12:33pm - Despite the forecast for another 30-degree-plus day, we have cloud cover again at Lord’s. There is even some threatening dark cloud in the distance, but there is very little wind to move it.

12:28pm - De Villiers, who earlier in the over miscued a near chance towards mid-off, elegantly lofts Swann down the ground for four.

12:24pm - Swann saves a run by pulling the ball back millimetres from the boundary after Amla opened the face to Anderson. As they need to be, England are fully committed to this.

12:19pm - Swann is coming round the wicket to Amla, who slices a shot down the ground and is fortunate to clear Broad at mid-off as he collects three runs.

James Anderson

12:15pm - Anderson succeeds Broad at the Pavilion End and the only run of the over is taken by Amla from the last ball.

12:10pm - Following the drinks break, Swann and Broad begin the second hour with tight overs. The crowd senses how important it is to break this stand.

11:54am - DROPPED CATCH - Anderson shells a regulation chance to snare de Villiers for eight at short midwicket off Swann. It came off the face of the bat and went straight to Anderson, who normally has a safe pair of hands, about a yard off the ground.

11:50am - New batsman AB de Villiers gets off the mark with a pull to the fine-leg fence off Broad and then lofts Swann over midwicket for a second four.

11:42am - WICKET! Steyn c Taylor b Broad 9; SA 164/4 - Stuart Broad takes over from Finn and digs one in to Steyn, who loops the simplest of catches to James Taylor at short-leg. That’s the breakthrough England urgently needed.

Dale Steyn

11:34am - Graeme Swann replaces Anderson, just as the sun breaks through the this cloyd cover. Steyn edges just out of the reach of Andrew Strauss at slip.

11:25am - Steyn loses patience with blocking and has an ugly swipe at Anderson. He is lucky not to edge behind and takes advantage by clipping to square-leg for the day’s first boundary, which takes the Proteas beyond 150.

11:21am - Finn is agonisingly close to brushing Amla’s glove with a short-of-a-length ball that finds extra bounce. He follows up with a similar delivery that beats Amla’s outside edge and goes on to complete a maiden.

11:18am - Amla takes a quick single at the start of Anderson’s over, exposing Steyn who does well to survive more threatening bowling.

11:11am - Hashim Amla inside-edges Finn dangerously close to his stumps, but the right-hander otherwise looks solid and takes a single to deep backward square-leg from the last ball of the over.

11:07am - James Anderson starts from the Nursery End, his less preferred end at Lord’s. He bowls three bouncers to Steyn, one more than he is allowed in an over, and is consequently warned by umpire Kumar Dharmasena. Yesterday he was warned by Simon Taufel for running on the pitch.

11:02am - Steven Finn begins from the Pavilion End to nightwatchman Dale Steyn, who takes a blow on his left glove from a short ball and requires treatment. It is the same hand he was hit on yesterday evening after replacing Jacques Kallis at the wicket.

Pre-Play News

10:59am - Former South Africa seamer Shaun Pollock has rung the pavilion bell and the players plus umpires are out in the middle. We are ready to go. Can England take advantage of a thin cloud covering early on?

10:50am - Yesterday was the hottest of the year in London with temperatutes topping 30 degrees Celcius. Today is expected to be hotter still. With such heat and the pressure of the game, will either side crack?

10:43am - As I am sure you know by now, Andrew Strauss' side must win this match to retain their position at the summit of the International Cricket Council's Test rankings. They will therefore be desperate to wrap up the Proteas' second innings as soon as possible today.

10:38am - Good morning everyone. We have a massive morning session ahead of us at Lord's, where South Africa will resume on 145 for three in the third and final Investec Test, leading England by 139.

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