South Africa vs England: ‘His bowling was a bit like Courtney Walsh’s’ - Nasser Hussain lauds England pacer after Cape Town victory
Former England captain Nasser Hussain lavished praise on all-rounder Ben Stokes after the latter starred with both bat and ball to power his team to a series-levelling win against South Africa at Newlands in Cape Town on Tuesday. Stokes scored 47 and 72 with the bat and then scalped three crucial wickets in the final innings to bundle Proteas out for 248 in the second essay. England won the match by 189 runs and the four-match series is now locked at 1-1.
Stokes was named the man of the match for his outstanding all-round display and Hussain singled out the 28-year-old for special praise after England’s emphatic bowling display in the final innings.
“I could not believe the first of his three-wicket burst that won England the game was his first bowling success of the Test,” Hussain wrote in his column for the Daily Mail. “When it reverse swings, as it did here after tea, Stokes becomes a real handful.”
“His bowling on Tuesday was a bit like Courtney Walsh’s. He leans a little wide of the crease and it looks like the ball is coming in from there, but at the last moment it straightens and batsman after batsman was forced into nicking off,” he added.
Hussain also praised skipper Joe Root for the way he led the team in Cape Town and also suggested that this could be his best performance as leader of the side. Root led England to their first Test victory at the venue in over 63 years.
“That was Joe Root’s best game as England captain. The way he led, the moves he made and the way his players responded in this second Test have provided him with the perfect template for the way his England Test team should play,” Hussain said.
“I have said time and again that there is no way an England team including all-time greats Root, Ben Stokes, Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad should lose so many games.
“And when other players add to the equation by doing the right things — as happened here — then there is not much wrong with England,” he added.
The final two matches of the series will be played in Port Elizabeth (Jan 16-20) and Johannesburg (Jan 24-28) respectively.