Broad inspires England to easy win
Tuesday 26 August 2008
Stuart Broad delivered the best performance of his international career to humiliate South Africa and secure a comprehensive victory for England in the second match of the one-day international NatWest Series.
Having grown up playing on the outfield at Trent Bridge as a child while father Chris played for Nottinghamshire 20 years ago, Broad returned to make his own mark at the ground with a devastating display of seam bowling.
Broad, who switched from Leicestershire to Nottinghamshire last winter, claimed five for 23 in a 10-over new-ball spell to help dismiss South Africa for a lowly 83 and secure England's emphatic 10-wicket victory by 5.35pm in a match billed as a day-night international.
Those figures were the best of his own career, the fifth best by an England player and completely humiliated a South African side who were briefly rated as the best side in the world earlier this year by dismissing them for the second lowest total in their history.
His performance capped another impressive display by an England side galvanised by the appointment of Kevin Pietersen as captain, who is yet to taste defeat since his unveiling after winning the final Test and the opening game of this five-match series at Headingley on Friday.
Stunned by their 20-run defeat in Leeds, which followed nine successive ODI victories, South Africa reacted by recalling big-hitting all-rounder Albie Morkel to their line-up ahead of schedule after a shoulder injury.
Morkel's return at the expense of Vernon Philander was designed to give South Africa impetus to their middle order, which they lacked during their run chase in the series opener.
But by the time Morkel arrived at the crease, however, the match was effectively over with South Africa reeling on 50 for six despite winning the toss and deciding to bat first on a fast and bouncy pitch.
Their challenge was undermined from the start with Broad given the new ball from the Pavilion End and removed South Africa's leading three batsmen inside the first three overs to set the tone for the remainder of the innings.
Aggressive opener Herschelle Gibbs became his first victim after he became frustrated in the fourth over of the innings by Broad's steady line and length, advanced down the pitch and got an inside edge behind to wicketkeeper Matt Prior.
That was the first of a record-equalling haul of six catches by Prior, who matched the achievement of former England wicketkeeper Alec Stewart against Zimbabwe at Old Trafford in 2000, as South Africa's top order struggled to cope with the swing and extra bounce provided by England's seamers.
Nearly all of Prior's catches were regulation, but perhaps earned his share of the record for his role in Broad's second victim with a full-length delivery which surprised Graeme Smith with the bounce and was brilliantly taken one-handed diving to his right in front of first slip.
Jacques Kallis fell in Broad's next over when he was tempted into a drive off the front foot and edged to Owais Shah at first slip and by the time he had also angled another delivery across JP Duminy to give another catch to Prior he had claimed four wickets in 16 balls.
Sensing an emphatic triumph, Pietersen went for the kill and brought all-rounder Andrew Flintoff into the attack, who accelerated South Africa's demise by winning an lbw appeal against AB de Villiers with a ball which jagged back into his pads.
Flintoff's hostility also accounted for Mark Boucher, who became the latest of many South African batsmen to edge behind, while Broad followed up by claiming his final wicket in his last over.
Steve Harmison replaced him from the Pavilion End and quickly wrapped up the tail with two wickets in his only over to leave England facing a modest target in reply.
Propelled by Prior's aggressive approach they raced to their target in just 14.1 overs with England's wicketkeeper accelerating to an unbeaten 45 off only 36 balls, including six fours and a six.
He completed the triumph with a pull for four off Andre Nel to complete only England's third 10-wicket victory in 495 one-day international matches to put them firmly in control of the five-match series.
By contrast, the tourists head for London to prepare for Friday's third match at The Oval knowing they need a quick reversal of fortunes and performance if their historic Test series triumph is not to be overshadowed by a dismal end to their tour.
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