Bairstow and Moeen provide fireworks as England sink South Africa in first T20


  • 1st T20: England 234-6 bt South Africa 193-8 by 41 runs
  • Stubbs’ explosive hitting in debut innings all in vain

On a postage-stamp ground where the bowlers mustered few special deliveries and the batters sent most of their messages by air mail, there was one particularly memorable arrival. England eventually romped to victory by 41 runs, but even on a night when Moeen Ali scored England’s fastest ever half-century in the format and Jonny Bairstow flayed his way to 90, the most memorable contribution came from South Africa’s Tristan Stubbs, a 21-year-old playing his first international innings.

Fully 120 of England’s 234 runs came from sixes, their 20 maximums more than they had ever scored before, or South Africa had conceded. With the tourists further dispirited by a series of failures in the field – even discounting the one Heinrich Klaasen lost in its flight and allowed to float over his head, Bairstow was dropped three times – their run chase seemed destined to be forlorn.

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Written by Simon Burnton at Bristol
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