England started their campaign of 2019 World Cup opener with a win at Kennington Oval. Eoin Morgan’s team, has been favourites for everybody and they showed to all why they are favourites by a clinical performance to beat South Africa by 104 runs. Ben Stokes starred with an all-round performance helped to win the game for the hosts.
Ben Stokes’s fine 89 and fifties from Jason Roy, Eoin Morgan and Joe Root. Bowling from Jofra Archer now in the ranks, looks much more potent, with the right-arm super fast taking three wickets after knocking Hashim Amla on the helmet and forcing him to retire hurt. The fielding was stellar too, especially Stokes catch at mid wicket made every England fans to jump in joy.
South Africa had done well with the ball, restricting the hosts to 311 after they were 213 for 3 from 36 overs. Until then, England’s batsmen had control.
Faf du Plessis brought the spinner to bowl the first over and it gave a good result for them. Imran Tahir took Bairstow in second ball of the innings and started his marathon celebration around The Oval after Bairstow had edging behind.
Roy and Root paired up and saw England enjoy the first of the two 100-run partnerships of the innings. The right-handers ensured they did not let the early setback to affect them, as they set the pace with regular boundaries and smart running between the wickets. Their fifty run stand came at a run a ball, and soon both batsmen scored fifties.
After Roy and Root fell in quick succession, Morgan and Stokes took over. Morgan hit two back-to-back sixes and in the process scoring his 7000th ODI run and got out after a mishitting in Ngidi’s over. Stokes was the calmer of the duo, but opened up at the right time, hitting Dwayne Pretorius for three fours in the 36th over and bringing up his fifty. At the end of that over, England were well placed with 14 overs still to play. 350 looked well within reach, but South Africa put in a fine fight.
Ngidi came back for a superb third spell at the death to get three wickets, while Rabada complimented him well to keep England to 311. South Africa went out high-fiving each other, but it only took a few overs into the chase for them to realise 312 was a long way away.
Archer fiery deliveries whacked Amla on the helmet and forced him to retire hurt. Aiden Markram got to only 11 before guiding Archer to Root at slip, while du Plessis was assumed control, but South Africa fought back with a fine stand between Rassie ven der beaten for pace as he top edged a pull. 44 for 2 and with Amla retiring hurt, England Dussen and Quinton de Kock. Both players got their fifties as South Africa slowly got themselves into the game.
But the wicket of de Kock added more pressure in Proteas dug out. Only van der Dussen looked to have some control over proceedings as the rest of the batsmen failed around him. Andile Phehlukwayo helped stitch together a decent stand as South Africa went into damage control, but he was brilliantly caught out on the boundary by Stokes, who leapt backwards to clinch a one-hander. Amla came back to bat later in the innings, but South Africa were out of the game at that time. Stokes wrapped up the innings with the wickets of Rabada and Tahir and give England a massive victory and it gave a big boost for their NRR at beginning itself.