Cook in awe of Amla

England

Captain Alastair Cook admitted England were outgunned by a superior South Africa unit, particularly centurion Hashim Amla, in the second ODI in Southampton.

Captain Alastair Cook admitted England were outgunned by a superior South Africa unit, particularly centurion Hashim Amla, in the second ODI in Southampton.

Chasing a formidable target after Amla's 150 pushed the Proteas to 287 for five, the hosts slumped to 207 all out – for an 80-run defeat and a one-nil deficit ahead of the remaining three matches.

Tuesday's result saw South Africa rise to the top of the ODI rankings, with England slipping to third in the wake of their first defeat in this format of the year.

"We didn't play very well, in all three aspects," rued Cook. "We were up with the run rate but never got that partnership. "We've got three games to bounce back.

"We've got to look at ourselves and stand up and be counted. They are playing some good cricket and a lot of credit must go to them. especially Amla."

The right-handed Amla was named Man of the Match for the 10th century of his ODI career, fifth away from home and first against England. His 124-ball would have been considerably shorter had he not been dropped on 42 and 92 by wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter.

"Amla's innings showed us how to play. He's in fantastic form. It's frustrating as a captain but he played beautifully. But our dropped catches are slightly disappointing, they're not sticking at the moment. You can't give good players chances like we are doing," added Cook.

"280 was a really good score but it was gettable. We were up with the scoring rate for a lot of that but you need someone to go on if you're going to chase that down."

The third ODI gets underway at The Oval in London on Friday.

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