Hitting six was a good crack, says spinner

After a horrible moment of acrimony that might have marred the series, England gleefully hauled themselves back into the first Test yesterday. The third day was threatening to turn bleak when Stuart Broad was, correctly, given out after a review of an umpiring decision that took too long to request.

Broad appeared to argue with the umpire, Aleem Dar, as he left the field and such incidents can leave bitter aftertastes. But Graeme Swann then played an innings of such unfettered joy, scoring 85 in 81 balls and making mockery of the stately progress hitherto, that England were able to forget their self-imposed agonies. He and his darts-playing buddy, Jimmy Anderson, shared a ninth wicket stand of 106, a record for England against South Africa. There was touching of gloves and best mate hugs all round as ball after ball was struck to the boundary.

"It was good crack," said Swann, "especially when he cracked that six over mid-wicket. He was telling me shots that I wasn't allowed to play next ball which I obviously then did and then so was he." Swann and Anderson unquestionably put England in the game after it seemed they were to go down the tubes at 242 for 8, still 176 behind. Thanks to their unexpected hitting that deficit was cut to 62.

Broad was given out following the review of a rejected lbw appeal by JP Duminy. South Africa took an estimated 34 seconds to ask for the re-examination of Dar's decision amid suggestions that they might have been tipped off by their dressing room.

"It was the amount of time it took to refer the decision," said Swann. "We didn't know what was happening and we were just checking they hadn't seen anything from the dressing room. To be fair the replay showed it was out so maybe the review system does work. We're not pointing the finger, but there are issues that need ironing out." It was mature reflection on an incident that could have caused ructions to last an entire series. Broad, who walked over to Dar after finally being given out, will be fortunate to escape official censure.

Paul Harris, who took five wickets for South Africa when he had Swann caught at deep mid-wicket, said there was no dressing room advice to Graeme Smith, their captain. "Graeme just made a late decision," he said. But it was Swann who took the heat out of the incident.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss