England need to strike early

The Wisden Bulletin by Andrew Miller

August 22, 2003

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Close South Africa 260 for 7 (Kirsten 109*, Zondeki 50*) v England

Gary Kirsten cuts loose as England lose their way at Headingley
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England start the second day of the fourth Test against South Africa at Headingley with a slight edge, but knowing that it could have been so much better. Yesterday they came up against the granite-like resistance of Gary Kirsten, whose 18th Test hundred helped South Africa to recover from 21 for 4 to close on 260 for 7.

Kirsten admitted that his innings might not have been pretty to watch, but he rated it as one of his finest. "A lot of people say that suits my game, to hang in, to play terribly and to look horrible," he told reporters. "I was able to do that. That innings was up there with my best. The circumstances dictated that. It's always nice to get runs in adversity."

With Monde Zondeki, who frustrated England's bowlers with 50 not out, his maiden first-class half-century, Kirsten added 118 for the eighth wicket, and England have to strike early this morning if they are to avoid letting South Africa completely off the hook.

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Andrew Miller Andrew Miller was saved from a life of drudgery in the City when his car caught fire on the way to an interview. He took this as a sign and fled to Pakistan where he witnessed England's historic victory in the twilight at Karachi (or thought he did, at any rate - it was too dark to tell). He then joined Wisden Online in 2001, and soon graduated from put-upon photocopier to a writer with a penchant for comment and cricket on the subcontinent. In addition to Pakistan, he has covered England tours in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, as well as the World Cup in the Caribbean in 2007
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England won by 9 wickets
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South Africa won by 191 runs
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