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ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the fourth day of the final Test at Lord's
George Dobell and Firdose Moonda at Lord's
August 19, 2012
Drop of the day
James Anderson has a well-deserved reputation as England's best fielder in any position. But his failure to accept a simple chance at short mid wicket offered by AB de Villiers off the bowling of Graeme Swann when the batsman had scored just 8 was a major blow to England's hopes. De Villiers went on to score 43 and England later also dropped Jacques Rudolph. It meant that, in this innings they had dropped Hashim Amla on 1, de Villiers on 8 and Rudolph on six and, in the series, that they had dropped nine chances. As if it is not hard enough to beat South Africa….
Celebration of the day
South African batsmen have put their emotions into their gestures when bringing up hundreds on this tour. When Jacques Kallis brought up his hundred at the Oval, he pointed to his eye as a dedication to his friend Mark Boucher. When Amla etched his name onto the Lord's honours' board for the second time, he wrote a square in the sky with his hands, as though he was calling for the third umpire. Some thought it was a way of indicating that his name would be engraved again but it was actually a television sign, in recognition of the teams' video analyst Prasanna Agoram who has been helping Amla behind the scenes. Agoram has been with the team for since before their 2010-11 home series against India and previously worked with the Indian Hockey Federation, Royal Challengers Banglalore and Rafael Nadal.
Review of the day
If was not for the DRS, this series may have resembled the 1998 South Africa tour of England, one which Allan Donald remembers for the number of umpiring mistakes. One mistake that was not though was the decision Kumar Dharmasena made when he rejected James Anderson's appeal for lbw against de Villiers. Live it looked as though de Villiers was in line and height was not an issue so England seemed to have called for a good review. Replays showed the ball was only clipping legstump, less than half of it, so the call remained with the umpire, giving a rare upholding to the two men in the middle for this match.
Record of the day
Andrew Strauss has not had much to celebrate in this match so far but he did achieve something significant in his 100thTest. When his fingers closed around the delivery that dismissed de Villiers - a waist high catch off a thick outside edge - he had claimed his 121st catch for his country. In doing so he surpassed Ian Botham and Colin Cowdrey and became the England player to have taken the most catches in the outfield.
Dosing of the day
Morne Morkel can come across as a dopey character and while batting he showed why. Morkel reached a careful nine runs, during which he reviewed an onfield decision against him which gave him out because he was actually hit on the grill, before a loss of concentration cost him his wicket. Morkel had his front foot just outside the crease when Matt Prior collected a delivery bowled by Swann. Prior waited for Morkel to raise his back foot and took off the bails in the fraction of a second when Morkel did. His timing was impeccable because Morkel's foot was soon back on the ground, but not quickly enough to avoid him being saved. Prior had tried something similar when Rudolph when he lifted his foot very briefly but got it down in time. On both occasions though, Prior's attention to detail was superb.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: George Dobell
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