England suffered an epic collapse as they lost by 27 runs to South Africa in the first ODI of the three-match series at Newlands in Cape Town.
England had looked in control of the match after Jason Roy’s barnstorming century had helped them to a total of 303-7. But South Africa’s bowlers fought back brilliantly to restrict England to 276-9 and take a 1-0 lead in the series.
Roy had been in imperious form, smashing a career-best 162 off just 118 balls. He was ably supported by Joe Root, who made a composed 79, and Jos Buttler, who scored a quickfire 44.
But South Africa’s bowlers fought back brilliantly, led by Kagiso Rabada, who took 4-54. He was ably supported by Lungi Ngidi (2-50) and Andile Phehlukwayo (2-51).
England’s batting collapse began in the 33rd over when Roy was dismissed for 162. From that point, England lost their last seven wickets for just 43 runs.
Root was the first to go, caught behind off the bowling of Ngidi for 79. He was followed by Ben Stokes, who was bowled by Phehlukwayo for just four.
Buttler was the next to go, caught off the bowling of Rabada for 44. He was followed by Moeen Ali, who was caught off the bowling of Rabada for just one.
Adil Rashid was the next to go, caught off the bowling of Ngidi for just two. He was followed by Chris Woakes, who was bowled by Rabada for a duck.
Tom Curran was the next to go, caught off the bowling of Phehlukwayo for just one. He was followed by Mark Wood, who was caught off the bowling of Rabada for just one.
The final wicket fell in the 48th over when David Willey was caught off the bowling of Ngidi for just one.
It was a disappointing end to a match that had promised so much for England. Roy’s century had given them a great platform to build on, but their batting collapse meant that they were unable to capitalise on it.
South Africa will now take a 1-0 lead into the second ODI, which takes place on Sunday. England will need to regroup quickly if they are to level the series.