Record tailender stand sees England to 400 runs in first innings

Published On: January 25, 2020 08:30 PM NPT By: Reuters

JOHANNESBURG, Jan 25: England’s tailenders put South Africa to the sword with a record-breaking 10th-wicket partnership to amass 400 runs in their first innings and take a firm grip on the final test at The Wanderers on Saturday.

South Africa were 11-0 in reply at tea on the second day as they began the long haul to try to get back into contention but hopes of a series-levelling victory look a long way off.

Stuart Broad and Mark Wood scored 82 runs together to set a record 10th-wicket partnership at The Wanderers and inflict a morale crushing blow on their hosts, already 2-1 down in the series.

Broad, who made 43 off 28 balls, and Wood, not out on 35, thrashed the ball to all parts of the cavernous stadium, forcing South Africa into the seldom-seen scenario of eight boundary fielders trying to defend against No. 10 and No. 11 batsmen.

There were also half centuries for captain Joe Root, Ollie Pope and a valuable 32 from Chris Woakes in his first appearance on the tour.

Anrich Nortje (5-110) took a maiden test five-wicket haul but it was not a day to remember for the South African bowlers

England were 192-4 overnight when play began 45 minutes late because of a rain delay and steadily moved the scoreboard along as Pope, first, and then Root got to 50.

Pope continued to build on his growing reputation and looked the senior batsman at times as he and Root put on 101 runs for the fifth wicket.

The 22-year-old Pope again highlighted the strokeplay that has him billed as a future test star as his third test half century came up in 61 balls before he played on to a delivery from Nortje.

Root was dropped by captain Faf du Plessis in Nortje’s next over but it did not prove costly as the England skipper was out soon after for the addition of five more runs when he got a healthy edge to Nortje and was taken by wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock.

Sam Curran followed next ball, swinging wildly at the first delivery he faced, getting an edge and being snagged behind by De Kock.

But after tea Jos Buttler (20) added 40 runs with Woakes. Du Plessis atoned for his earlier drop with a diving catch to snag Woakes and hand Nortje his fifth wicket of the innings.

Then Wood and Broad let rip with a furious flurry of thunderous half volleys to ensure an imposing first-innings tally.

South Africa began their reply with circumspection and after 12 overs Dean Elgar had four and Pieter Malan seven at tea.

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