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Cook inspires dogged England

Cook (left) and Collingwood put England in a strong position with a stand of 142.
Cook (left) and Collingwood put England in a strong position with a stand of 142.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Alastair Cook hits his 10th Test century as England close on 386-5 in Durban
  • Cook's stand of 142 with Paul Collingwood (91) gives England a first innings lead of 43
  • Morne Morkel leads South African attack with three for 69
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(CNN) -- England opener Alastair Cook scored his 10th Test century as his side claimed a potentially decisive first innings lead against South Africa in the second Test in Durban on Monday.

Cook, who had been out of form and under pressure for his place ahead of the Test, played the anchor role as England closed on 386 for five wickets, a lead of 43 with two days remaining.

His fourth wicket stand of 142 with Paul Collingwood tilted the game England's way after South Africa struck to remove Jonathan Trott early in the day for 18 and Kevin Pietersen for 31.

Morne Morkel claimed Trott caught behind by Mark Boucher and also the scalp of Cook for 118, edging to Jacques Kallis at slip, to lead the South African attack with three for 69.

Pietersen, dropped on 20 at slip after a casual back foot drive, did not make South Africa pay for the lapse as slow-left armer Paul Harris had him trapped leg before wicket to an attempted sweep.

But the resolute Collingwood, who is England's leading batsman on the tour, joined left-hander Cook in an excellent stand as they weathered the second new ball taken by the home side.

Cook had failed to make more than 32 in his previous eight Test innings, but reached his century off 218 deliveries.

We're in a good position, obviously we have to crack on tomorrow and set the tone again and get the lead as big as we can
--Alastair Cook

He made successful use of the review system when on 64 as he was adjudged caught at short leg by umpire Amish Saheba off spinner JP Duminy.

But TV umpire Steve Davis ruled the ball had not touched the bat before bouncing off the pad to Hashim Amla.

Cook looked well set, but Morkel struck in the fifth over after tea to a ball which lifted more sharply off a generally placid pitch.

But the Essex star was well pleased with his work which has given England an excellent chance of forcing victory after the first Test draw.

"We're in a good position, obviously we have to crack on tomorrow and set the tone again and get the lead as big as we can," he told Sky Sports.

"But we can't look too far ahead, because a couple of quick wickets and we can let our situation slip a bit. We've got to pile on the runs tomorrow."

Cook's dismissal brought the Ian Bell to the wicket, another man under pressure after two failures in the first Test at Centurion, but he batted assuredly to the close and was unbeaten on 55 not out.

Collingwood fell nine short of his century as Duminy had him caught behind by Boucher off an under edge, but Matt Prior survived to stumps on 11 not out in a developing stand with Bell.