England vs South Africa Day 1 Highlights 1st Test 2012. England vs South Africa 1st Test Cricket Highlights 19 July 2012. Watch Eng vs SA Highlights 1st Test Day 1 2012. South Africa v England Highlights 1st Test played at Oval on 22 June 2012. South Africa Tour of England 2012.
This series could be all about cart-wheeling stumps, bonce-bothering bouncers and catches in the cordon, as the world’s two best bowling attacks go head to head in conditions favourable to pace and swing. It could also be overshadowed by the weather and the Olympics, with its attendant bureaucratic bungling, amid grumbles about the inadequacies of a three-Test series. For now, we can savour the prospect of a potentially thrilling clash between the two best sides in Test cricket – even if the rankings would perversely deny the fact.
Despite the ICC’s annual recalculation dropping South Africa to third, victory in the series would lift them above England to No. 1 – a position they last occupied, briefly, in 2009. Graeme Smith was the last touring captain to secure victory in England, going back to the historic series success of 2008, and South Africa are also unbeaten away from home since losing a two-Test rubber to Sri Lanka in 2006. With four batsmen – AB de Villiers, Jacques Kallis, Hashim Amla and Smith – in the top ten, they have a top-order on which to build a successful campaign; in Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander, the bowlers to torment England in a manner they are more used to dishing out.
Posturing aside, there will be a touch of sadness when the teams take the field, at the absence of Mark Boucher, who was set to reach 150 caps and more than 1,000 dismissals in international cricket during the series. Both teams have plenty of motivation but neither is confident enough to mutter “you guys are history” just yet.
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