How Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow downed the Proteas

Reading Time: 3 minutes

If anyone had the privilege to witness this special piece of art displayed by two fine young players, will have to agree, it was one of the best partnerships you are likely to see in test cricket. Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow added 399 to England’s total for the sixth wicket.

We can be easily to criticise South African’s bowling, but how could you bowl to a masterclass that would be appreciated in any format of the game. The South African’s did look demoralised, and by the time they got their only 2 chance towards the end of the partnership, they threw them away.

Morne Morkel and AB de Villiers dropping very regulation catches, but de Villiers reacted perfectly by running out Ben Stokes with a direct hit after the drop. South Africa were very much waiting for a declaration from England, and not looking to take wickets, and finish the innings prematurely.

They just kept bowling to Stokes and Bairstow’s strengths, or they both turned any ball into their strengths. It was quite a remarkable days of Test cricket, the pair went at 8 runs per over during their second days innings. Ben Stokes got off to an absolute flier, by dispatching multiple four within the first few overs.

From then on, Jonny Bairstow was in the shadow of Ben Stokes, but was happy to stay back and take the pressure off himself. They both batted beautiful with Bairstow playing his shots along the carpet and Ben clearing the rope 11 times for his 258.

Ben Stokes broke many records on a memorable morning for England.
Ben Stokes broke many records on a memorable morning for England.

They eventually declared on 629, ending the misery for South Africa. Ben Stokes just seemed to see it like a beach ball, and almost hit boundaries off every ball. The rate at which they scored at gave England so much more time to take 20 wickets against a physically and mentally drained South African team.

He fell 10 balls short of the fastest double hundred, which is held by Nathan Astle. Stokes and Bairstow broke the record for the fastest triple hundred partnership, and would’ve broke the quadruple hundred too, if they weren’t to fall 1 short.

They also broke the record for the most runs scored before lunch in a test, being 197. One player who would’ve especially enjoyed Stokes’ carnage of a know would be AB de Villiers, who would be proud of an innings of such himself, and it was a nice touch for him and Amla to recognise his and Bairstow’s efforts.

It was quite surreal to watch, and you could see how delighted everyone was for both of the players, reaching landmarks. It’s fair to say that both sets of fans would’ve enjoyed the pure entertainment that was on display, only to then be in complete contrast to South Africa’s batting performance, which was a whole 5 runs per over slower than the northern pairs morning.

With pressure still on his spot from talent such as Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow delivered yet again against South Africa, and is having an amazing series so far, accumulating more than 270 runs in 3 innings. Ben Stokes has amassed 10 more runs due to his out of the blue innings. Bairstow made his 150 off 190 balls, and was clearly emotional when he cut van Zyl to the boundary, celebrating the feat with passion, looking up to the sky in memory of his father who passed away in his teens, and was unable to make a century during his England career.

Bairstow batted beautifully and emulated Ben Stokes after reaching his hundred. He had troubles earlier in his career, and had been dropped many times, and been second best to Jos Buttler for a while. He made changes to his technique, and to good effect. Jonny now looks at his best, an on form batsman, helping England reach wins, and put them in winning positions.

Jonny Bairstow had the best seat of Stokes’ destruction of the number one test team from the other end. England were looking as if they would struggle to collect a total of 400 after the top 4 all got in and got out, and slumped to 223-5.

It was truly a great cricketing show, and while the big bash was on another channel, runs were being scored at a quicker rate in the test match, as they helped England to their highest ever total against score against South Africa. They both put a smile on the players and fans faces, and have put England in a great position, and have shown the world that this young England team are becoming the real deal in all forms of cricket.

It was a privilege to watch, and lets hope that we can see more of the same cricket for the rest of the series.

Sam Roberts
A cricket writer, podcaster and enthusiast.
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Sports as We Know It May Never Look the Same Again

This lockdown has given us so many of the bad things we never really thought we'd see: widespread job loss, rampant hospitalization and deaths, and the major, sticking-out-like-a-sore-thumb kind of problems in society. But, if there's something that everyone felt, it's the loss of sports. Many people said that sports is only important to sports fans, but it's becoming more evident that the purpose of sports isn't just exclusively athletic. Now, it seems like...

MLB: End Of Season Award Show 2 Cy Youngs, 2 Rookie of the Years and More!

The 2020 MLB regular season has come to an end, and with it comes playoff brackets, predictions, debates and discussions. However, we are going to save playoff predictions for another article. In this article we are going to talk about End of Season awards. Wo deserves the Cy Young awards?, Rookie of the Year? Most Valuable Player??? All of these questions and more will be answered. These are my opinions after watching the games,...

When It Comes To Israel Adesanya – Believe The Hype

If you've ever had the privilege of watching Israel Adesanya fight, you know that he is the perfect example of handcrafted precision. In his most recent fight, so many people felt this would be the fight that would finally DE-thrown the champ.  They felt Paulo Costa had the advantage because of his size, his strength and his overall power. If you've seen Costa, you know he's like a modern day Hercules. Costa's punches are explosive and...

2020 NBA Finals: A Champion Will Be Crowned

The stage is set. After a few short months that involved an eight game restart season and a very unique postseason,  the Los Angeles Lakers and the Miami Heat will face each other for the first time in the NBA Finals. There are a lot of storylines that will unfold during the duration of the Finals, but the main storyline will have to be LeBron James facing the team that helped him win two championships....

Memorable Test Match Innings: Kevin Pietersen at the Oval 15 years on

“I saw this innings via a social distancing gap between myself and the television. To truly have the visceral thrill of Pietersen’s 158, you needed to be at The Oval on 12 September 2005.” “Just because I've got a stupid haircut or diamond earrings, it's not going to make me cover drive a ball any differently.” Kevin Pietersen arrived on the international scene in full technicolour. In early 2005, KP entered the lion’s den of his...

Tewatia plays blinder as Rajasthan chase historic total to beat KXIP

Rahul Tewatia hit 5 sixes in an over as Rajasthan Royals chased down the highest score in Indian Premier League history to beat Kings XI Punjab by four wickets on Sunday. Tewatia hit Sheldon Cottrell for five sixes in the 18th over and added another six of the next ball he faced as Rajasthan chased down 224. Jofra Archer hit 13 from 3 balls to see the side home. Rajasthan beat their own record – they...

NRL Finals Loom as Regular Season Concludes

The first fixtures of the National Rugby League's finals series are locked in after the final round of the regular season came to an end today. The Competitors While Penrith Panthers had already secured the minor premiership and the top eight were determined two rounds ago, some key positions were still open and the race for those positions made for some entertaining footy. The Newcastle Knights failed to hold sixth place, going down on Friday to a...

Russian GP – Race Preview

Russian Grand Prix can be a boring race so let's hope this race gets off to a great start. The only memory I have of the Russian GP is Valtteri Bottas letting Lewis Hamilton win. Last race at Mugello was an exciting race. With two red flags and one horrible crash. And Ferrari 1000 celebration wasn't the best either, but that might be because of the strict rules now during COVID 19. So I am happy...

Benny Leonard: Always A Champion

If you sat down with a group of boxing fans under the age of say, 50, and began to talk about whether Benny Leonard really is a Top-10 all-time fighter, you'd probably have a cacophony of voices barking at you about how great "Sugar" Ray really was. Tell them you were talking about Benny Leonard though, and you might hear a lot of "Who's that?" from the same group. But Benny Leonard most definitely belongs...

The Green Light: The Rugby Championship 2020

In what has been a challenging year for many rugby fans and mainly the players, the Southern Hemisphere's Rugby Championship 2020 tournament has just been confirmed for the back end of the season. The Rugby Championship tournament - previously known as the Tri-Nations - was inaugurated in 1996 with the three rugby-rich countries; Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, all contesting for the converted trophy. In 2012, the tournament expanded to add the South...

Social Connect


Trending Now

AFL Finals Locked In

This weekend's results conclude the heavily disrupted Australian Football League regular season, turning attention towards the Finals series in October. Across 18 rounds spanning six...
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x