The 12th edition of World cup cricket started at Oval London on a bright day and England cruised to an easy win over a rusty South Africa to notch up full points. Batting 1st, England suffered an early jolt with Imran Tahir snapping up in-form Johny Bairstow with a classic leg spinner. However from then on Jason Roy (53) and Joe Root (51) put up an enterprising stand to put England in front with both of them matching each other stroke for stroke which was really soothing to the eyes of a capacity crowd.After their dismissals skipper Ewin Morgan (57)and Stokes(89) piled on the agony for the Protea bowlers with another big partnership full of exciting shots. The Protea bowlers did manage to restrict matters towards the backend as Ngidi and Rabada began to realise the pace and line of attack required on this pitch but Englands ultimate score of 311 in 50 overs was always going to be tough to chase in a World cup game specially by a brittle batting lineùp of South Africa.
And so it proved as apart from the elegant Decock (68) and to some extent Van Dussen (50) ,the South African batting looked all at sea in this chase losing wickets in clusters. Jofra Archer’s (debut match )fast and hostile bowling also made a difference as he accounted for Markram and Duplessis and crunched Amla near his face causing him to retire then as a precaution. However apart from Archer’s pace ,there was very little in England attack that should have caused worry to Proteas but they kept losing wickets to soft dismissals .There was also a one handed stunning catch by Ben Stokes near the boundary to dismiss Phehlukwayo for 24 as South Africa soon folded for 207 in 40 overs to lose heavily by 104 runs with Stokes getting man of the match award. Jofra Archer was the best bowler from either side generating lot of pace and bounce getting 3/27 to further please the England management.