Taylor heaps praise on unbeaten Compton


James Taylor lauded Nick Compton after the pair put together a crucial 125-run partnership to rescue England from their poor start on the opening day of the first Test against South Africa.

Having lost the toss, England found themselves 49-3 in the 19th over as the returning Dale Steyn led the Proteas attack superbly, taking two early wickets for the hosts.

Compton (63 not out) and Taylor (70) were not so easy to remove, though, as they played patiently in Durban, while attacking any loose deliveries - England closing 179-4 after Taylor's late dismissal.

While Taylor was the more aggressive of the two, he was impressed with Compton's display on his return after two-and-a-half years away.

"A lot of credit to Compo," he told SuperSport. "When they [Alastair Cook and Joe Root] don't score it is up to other people to put up their hands.

"We did that today. It was crucial to get a good start, to put a marker down.

"Compo's runs and time put down were crucial. He was superb, it has been an excellent day.

"Our partnership was decent. I think we're in a really good position."

South Africa's strike bowler Steyn agreed with Taylor's assessment of the day, but believes the Proteas can turn the screw early on day two.

"It's kind of even," Steyn told SuperSport. "[After] winning the toss and putting them in we would have liked to have more [wickets].

"The big partnership put a big dampener on us, but they didn't get away. Hopefully something happens with the ball [tomorrow], if we hit our straps with the ball something will go for us."