England let a dominant start to its chase slip and South Africa won the first one-day international by 27 runs with a memorable fightback on Friday.
Jason Roy made 113 for England and his opening stand of 146 off 118 balls with Dawid Malan (59) appeared to put the visitors on course for an easy win chasing 299.
But England went from 146-0 inside 20 overs to 271 all out as South Africa’s fast bowlers turned it around to win the game in Bloemfontein.
Anrich Nortje claimed 4-62, Sisanda Magala 3-46 and Kagiso Rabada 2-46 for South Africa.
England wobbled first when it lost Malan, Ben Duckett (3) and debutant Harry Brook (0) for six runs in the space of three overs, with Magala taking two of those wickets in his first ODI in a year.
England was still in a strong position until Nortje forced skipper Jos Buttler out caught behind at the start of a blistering late spell that brought him three of his wickets and ended England’s hopes.
Buttler’s departure for 36 left England 234-6 and with Sam Curran the only recognized batsman left.
He tried to shepherd England home with plenty of overs left but he crucially feathered an edge behind to wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock off the last ball of Rabada’s 10 overs and the momentum had truly swung.
Nortje steamed in to remove Jofra Archer for a duck and legspinner Tabraiz Shamsi sealed the victory by getting Olly Stone caught and bowled, although Shamsi juggled and nearly dropped the catch. He held on and sprinted away to celebrate.
England had nearly six overs left when Stone was last man out.
South Africa took a 1-0 lead in a three-match series that was postponed in late 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic and the teams have waited more than two years to finally play.
Archer was back in the England team for the first time in nearly two years after elbow and back injuries and the quick bowler returned 1-81 as South Africa batted first. Curran led the England bowling with 3-35.
Rassie van der Dussen hit 111 for South Africa and David Miller made 53 but the Proteas’ 298-7 was not seen as a daunting score on a solid batting pitch at Mangaung Oval.
Roy and Malan gave England a commanding start, and the South Africa-born Roy went on to thump 11 fours and four sixes in his first ODI century against a top-tier team since 2019.
England was still in control when Roy slammed a pull shot off Rabada straight to Wayne Parnell on the boundary.
Nortje’s pace and aggression, with backup from Magala and Rabada, sparked the fightback.
- Shaji Prabhakaran sacked as AIFF Secretary General
- England vs Netherlands Live Score, World Cup 2023: ENG 78/1 (12); Malan, Root rebuild after Bairstow falls; ENG vs NED updates
- Shubman Gill overtakes Babar Azam to become No 1 ODI batter; Siraj claims top bowling spot
- ISL Diary: Chennai in carnival mode
- Mitoma heads full-strength Japan squad to start World Cup qualifying