Hosts England register thumping 104-run win over South Africa in opener

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30 May 2019, 22:52 IST

England v South Africa - ICC Cricket World Cup 2019
England v South Africa – ICC Cricket World Cup 2019

Hosts England defeated South Africa by 104 runs in the opening match of the ICC World Cup 2019 played at the Oval, London on Thursday.

South African captain Faf du Plessis won the toss and decided to field first. The decision paid off as Imran Tahir dismissed Jonny Bairstow off the 2nd ball of the match. Jason Roy and Joe Root then steadied the England innings, putting pressure on the South African bowling line up.

After the powerplay overs, Roy and Root continued to put the South African bowling line-up under pressure. Roy reached his half-century off 51 balls while Joe Root completed his fifty off 56 balls.

Just when things were looking dangerous for South Africa, Andile Phehlukwayo got the breakthrough, dismissing Roy for 54.

Kagiso Rabada then dismissed the other well-set batsman Root for 51. Ben Stokes and Eoin Morgan though showed their class by taking on the South African bowling. Morgan played with attacking intent, reaching his fifty off 50 balls while Stokes reached the milestone off 46 balls.

Imran Tahir got South Africa back in the game by dismissing Morgan for 57. The South African bowlers fought back brilliantly in the death overs, Lungi Ngidi dismissing the dangerous Jos Buttler for 18. South Africa gave away just 76 runs and took 4 wickets in the last 10 overs, restricting England to 311 for 8 at the end of 50 overs.

Chasing 312 runs to win, Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock began steadily. However, Amla was forced to retire hurt after being hit by a bouncer from Jofra Archer.

De Kock and Aiden Markram played a few good shots but Archer soon sent Markram back to the pavilion. He then got the wicket of South African captain Faf du Plessis as well with a well-directed short ball.

After the powerplay overs, de Kock and Rassie van der Dussen looked to steady the South African innings by milking the bowling. However, Liam Plunkett put England firmly in control by dismissing de Kock for 68.

JP Duminy and Dwaine Pretorius were then dismissed in quick succession as South Africa suffered a collapse. Van der Dussen reached his fifty off 56 balls but Archer returned to dismiss him as well, all but ending South Africa’s hopes.

Hashim Amla then returned to the crease but could not produce anything special. Ben Stokes picked up the last 2 wickets to help England register a thumping 104-run win.

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