South Africa vs England: In landmark Test, James Anderson joins exclusive list of bowlers after Dean Elgar dismissed for 0
Joe Root won the toss and elected to bowl first on a track which had a good covering of grass. James Anderson, who became the second English cricketer to play 150 Test matches, ran in with the new ball. Dean Elgar was on strike, the ball landed on a length and swung down the leg side, Elgar tried to glance it away, but the ball kissed the bat and Jos Buttler took an easy catch behind. It was the perfect start for England and South Africa were rocked early.
With this feat, Anderson became the fifth bowler in this decade to claim a wicket off the first ball of a Test match and joined an exclusive club of bowlers.
Wicket of first ball of the Test in this decade:
James Anderson v Dean Elgar, Centurion, today
Suranga Lakmal v KL Rahul, Kolkata, 2017
Mitchell Starc v Dimuth Karunaratne, Galle, 2016
Suranga Lakmal v Chris Gayle, Pallekele, 2010
Dale Steyn v Andrew Strauss, Johannesburg, 2010
At the toss, Joe Root confirmed a five-man attack which included Ben Stokes.
“We’re going to bowl first. It’s quite a tricky decision to make and it’s a great opportunity to exploit the grass. Jack Leach is unfit and we’re going in with five quicks. We have made some tough decisions with the squad because of their illness. Ben Stokes is going to play and his family is going to be very proud of him. It is important to be able to share the Christmas with your families. [On Jimmy Anderson’s 150th Test] It shows great ability for his skill. A 150th Test match is a great testament to his physical fitness,” Root said at the toss.
South Africa (Playing XI): Aiden Markram, Dean Elgar, Zubayr Hamza, Rassie van der Dussen, Faf du Plessis(c), Quinton de Kock(w), Dwaine Pretorius, Vernon Philander, Keshav Maharaj, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje
England (Playing XI): Rory Burns, Dominic Sibley, Joe Denly, Joe Root(c), Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler(w), Sam Curran, Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, James Anderson