England cricket player ratings: Zak Crawley’s misery continues but Ollie Pope a plus from brisk Lord’s Test

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Zak Crawley struggles again as England tumble to first Test defeat of summer; Ollie Pope, Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes make mark before South Africa storm to 1-0 lead in three-match series – watch second Test on Sky Sports from Thursday (10am on air, 11am start)

Last Updated: 20/08/22 11:50am

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Highlights from day three of the first Test as South Africa thumped England by an innings and 12 runs

Highlights from day three of the first Test as South Africa thumped England by an innings and 12 runs

Fans working out how to get to and from Lord’s on Saturday amid the train strikes did not need to worry in the end.

The first LV= Insurance Test was over before tea on the third day as South Africa rolled England for just 149 to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series and inflict a first defeat of the summer on Ben Stokes’ hosts.

So, who struggled for England and who were the shining lights?

England vs S Africa

August 25, 2022, 10:00am

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Zak Crawley – 3

9 & 13

You wonder for how much longer Crawley will be a part of our post-Test player ratings because if his lean run of form continues then surely England must make a change at some stage? “We don’t necessarily look for consistency with Zak. It’s about match-winning performances and doing special things,” was England assistant coach Paul Collingwood’s take when quizzed about Crawley after a rain-hit first day at Lord’s.

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Zak Crawley’s miserable summer continued as he was dismissed for 13 on day three at Lord’s

Zak Crawley’s miserable summer continued as he was dismissed for 13 on day three at Lord’s

The problem is that those “special things” have not been forthcoming this summer. Crawley is averaging 16.40 from 10 innings with six single-figure scores and a best of 46. Technically and mentally, he appears frazzled. Sky Sports’ Mark Butcher said England’s consistent backing of Crawley is becoming “cruel” on a player who could perhaps do with being taken out of the firing line, while you could also argue that keeping him in situ would be cruel on other county players who have scored runs this season. If they cannot get in now, then when can they?

Alex Lees – 5

5 & 35

Lees has become emboldened under Stokes and Brendon McCullum’s aggressive – just ‘don’t call it Bazball’ – revolution, with the shot-shy player we saw in the West Indies in March replaced by a more free-flowing batter. The left-hander was perhaps a little too exuberant in the first innings at Lord’s, swiping Kagiso Rabada behind to fall for five, but played more conventionally in the second after being dropped on four in the slip cordon, making his way to 35 before he became one of three victims for South Africa speedster Anrich Nortje during a ferocious post-lunch spell. A really big score continues to elude Lees – his top total in 16 Test innings so far is 67 – but he has shown enough to be persevered with for now. The big question is whether he will soon have a new man alongside him up top?

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South Africa fast bowler Anrich Nortje took three wickets in 10 balls on Friday, dismissing Jonny Bairstow, Alex Lees and Ben Foakes

South Africa fast bowler Anrich Nortje took three wickets in 10 balls on Friday, dismissing Jonny Bairstow, Alex Lees and Ben Foakes

Ollie Pope – 7

73 and 5

Most of England’s decisions so far this summer have paid off, with the elevation of Pope to No 3 certainly one of them. The Surrey man hit 145 and then 82 against New Zealand in June, before proving the shining light of England’s batting at Lord’s this week with a first-innings 73 when no other player passed 20. Pope was busy and proactive but not reckless as he ploughed on while South Africa’s seamers shredded his team-mates under leaden skies. He looks increasingly at home at first drop – a position he had never previously batted in before this summer – with his second-innings lbw dismissal to Proteas spinner Keshav Maharaj a rare blip.

Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow – 3

Root – 8 & 6
Bairstow – 0 & 18

Root had a rare off game at Lord’s, making just 14 runs combined after two single-figure exits – only the second time since January 2019 he has failed to make double digits in a Test. Root fell victim to a tight lbw call in the first innings after the skyscraping Marco Jansen pinned him on the pad, before edging Lungi Ngidi tamely to slip in the second. For Bairstow, after a run of four tons in his last five Tests – a period Butcher described as “batting nirvana” – he came down to earth as the rampant Nortje poleaxed his stumps first time around at Lord’s and then found his edge with a scorching delivery in the second. Root and Bairstow’s recent returns mean there is nothing to worry about, with the duo perhaps hindered by the fact they had not faced a red ball since guiding England to victory over India at Edgbaston in July – but let’s not get into that schedule debate again…

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Ben Stokes’ brilliant bouncer accounted for South Africa opener Sarel Erwee in the first Test

Ben Stokes’ brilliant bouncer accounted for South Africa opener Sarel Erwee in the first Test

Ben Stokes – 6

20 and 20
3-71 from 18 overs

The skipper was largely quiet with the bat, save for some sparkling strokes in the first innings, and it was his bowling that threatened to drag England back into a match in which they were second best throughout. Stokes played a crucial role in a South African wobble of 4-50, dismissing Sarel Erwee with a brute of a bouncer and then pinning Rassie van der Dussen lbw, only for Jansen and Maharaj to rally the Proteas with the bat. As for Stokes’ captaincy, perhaps he had one too many slips in at times, perhaps he could have given James Anderson and Stuart Broad the new ball on day three and not instead got himself and Matthew Potts bowling short balls at South Africa’s tail, but the crux of England’s defeat was the batters lasting less than 83 overs You don’t win many games doing that.

Ben Foakes – 4

0 & 6
3 catches

It probably goes without saying that Foakes’ glovework was slick – it is rarely anything but. His issue in this Test was Nortje. Twice he was nobbled by the searing South Africa quick, inside-edging onto his stumps for six on Wednesday and then nicking off for a duck on Friday after a tame poke. Still, this was Foakes’ first outing since late July and his first in Test cricket since June, having missed the victory over India while he recovered from Covid-19. England will hope Foakes is better for the gallop when they rock up at Emirates Old Trafford for the second Test next week.

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Stuart Broad takes a stunning catch to dismiss Kagiso Rabada in the opening over of day three at Lord’s

Stuart Broad takes a stunning catch to dismiss Kagiso Rabada in the opening over of day three at Lord’s

Stuart Broad – 7

3-71 from 19.1 overs
15 and 35

It’s never dull with Broad – he is a pure box-office cricketer! This week alone, he picked up his 100th Test match wicket at Lord’s; produced a quite remarkable one-handed catch at mid-wicket to dismiss Rabada, and played a freewheeling cameo with the bat on the third, and ultimately final, day with his 29 from 35 deliveries featuring five fours and a top-edged six. With the ball it wasn’t vintage Broad. He, like the rest of England’s pace attack, looked a little rusty but he did claim the final two South Africa wickets after making Kyle Verreynne his milestone scalp at cricketing HQ.

Matthew Potts – 5.5

2-79 from 20 overs

Potts has been the find of the summer for England but this Test was trickier for him. The Durham man was a little expensive early on in South Africa’s innings, put away for boundaries when he erred too full or short, although he did improve and went on to have Keegan Petersen caught at slip before having Broad to thank for the wicket of Rabada. With Ollie Robinson back into form and fitness, Potts would seem the most likely man to make way if England opted to tinker with the pace attack in Manchester.

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James Anderson took his first Test wicket since turning 40 in fortuitous fashion, with Dean Elgar bowled off thigh guard and elbow!

James Anderson took his first Test wicket since turning 40 in fortuitous fashion, with Dean Elgar bowled off thigh guard and elbow!

James Anderson – 6.5

1-51 from 18 overs

Like Broad, Anderson was not at his supreme best but he still deserved more than the one wicket he managed in the match. That scalp was fortuitous with South Africa captain Dean Elgar bowled off thigh guard and elbow and also one for stats buffs as Anderson became the first frontline forty-plus England seamer to take a wicket in Test cricket since Leslie Jackson in 1961. Anderson did not overexert himself with the bat, out lbw for a golden duck to Rabada in the first innings and then cleaned up by Jansen for one in the second as South Africa clinched a crunching victory. The good news for Anderson is that he now has an extra couple of days off!

Jack Leach – 6.5

1-42

In a game dominated by seam bowlers – mainly South Africa’s, obviously – Leach impressed with his left-arm spin, taking the wicket of Aiden Markram with a peach of a delivery during a tidy 14 overs. The Somerset man looks reborn from the player that toiled in The Ashes, with captain Stokes’ faith giving the bowler a real confidence boost. Due to England’s batting woes, we will never know how effective Leach could have been on days four and five at Lord’s but he will be looking forward to the Old Trafford Test with the pitch in Manchester often a decent one for the spinners.

Watch day one of the second LV= Insurance Test between England and South Africa, from Emirates Old Trafford, live on Sky Sports The Hundred from Thursday. Build-up starts at 10am ahead of the first ball at 11am.

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