Joe Root Slams Ton on Captaincy Debut, 6th Englishman to do so

Gary Ballance has been recalled to the England squad to face South Africa at Lord's

Root's predecessor Alastair Cook was the first to go, but the new skipper proved much more resilient and, together with Ben Stokes (56) and Moeen Ali (61 not out), rescued the innings from a complete nosedive.

Perhaps Morkel's two most costly wickets off no-balls were Ed Cowan and Michael Clarke in the same Test in November 2012 .

Toby Roland-Jones is expected to make his debut tomorrow, and he will be looking to make a positive impression on Andrew Strauss and the rest of the European Central Bank, along with Joe Root, who will be playing in his first match as captain. They have also had a stellar Champions Trophy campaign, marred only by an off day against the team that would eventually clinch the title.

There was fortune along the way for the new captain.

Vernon Philander, the pick of the bowlers with three for 46, said: "There's probably no excuse for that - the guys overstepped and it cost us wickets".

I think Joe Root as captain has had a little impact on picking Ballance, but not much as it is completely on merit. They will argue that they've lived on without De Villiers through the previous year or so and they've moved themselves up", said the former England captain, "They've played some very good cricket.

"It s an enhanced feeling when you get here, an emotion to try and do well. The pleasing sign for us is that we have got runs on the board now and even with the old ball, it seemed to move around a bit". "I knew it was rubbish". He'll bring us a lot of control and a bit of depth in our batting as well.

"It's up to us to set the tone in the right way".

"It's a special place to play cricket". He was on 5 with the total on 31/2 when Rabada surprised him with a short ball that the England captain top-edged to fine leg. Aiden Markram, briefly on the field as a substitute for Philander, came too far infield and the ball dropped over his head for a one bounce boundary. The Test series will be broadcast on Sky Sports 2 in the United Kingdom while England vs South Africa 1st Test live streaming is available on Sky Go. "He has got a never-say-die attitude about him which is exciting to have". If they don't deliver on that plan, they have to accept it when the captain goes another way - and the captain needs to be strong enough to do so.

The sun is expected to beat down on a Lord's surface that has only served up three results in the last two seasons of County Championship cricket - and one of those was a manufactured run chase as Middlesex clinched the title a year ago.

Anderson, 35 this month, is senior statesman to both Cook and Broad, but after an injury scare on Lancashire duty in May he is back with next winter's Ashes still in his sights. Some of Root's wrist work, threading the ball through the off-side, was a joy to watch and he put his foot down in the final session, taking the game by the scruff of the neck as the very best players and captains do.

"But he's been training extremely hard to get ready for what is a really big schedule".



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