England v South Africa, 3rd ODI, Lord's May 29, 2017

Five overs of mayhem

ESPNcricinfo staff

Play 01:25
WATCH - England lose six wickets in first 5 overs

England's top order, renowned for scores over 300, was blown away in five astonishing overs at Lord's by Kagiso Rabada and Wayne Parnell. It was the quickest loss of the first six wickets in ODI history. Here's how ESPNcricinfo's ball-by-ball commentary recorded the drama

0.5 Rabada to Roy, OUT, got him, steered to slip! Amla holds on this time, low down as a thick edge lobbed off the bat... Another single-figure score for Roy, who was drawn forward by a demanding line, the ball nibbling away down the Lord's slope and sending England's tub-thumping opener back to the changing rooms with a whimper

1.5 Parnell to Root, OUT, trapped in front! Parnell beats him past the inside edge, booming swing - and England are two down! Lovely shape on that delivery, which started outside off and curled back in as Root aimed a punch down the ground. No hesitation from Michael Gough and it looked pretty plumb

3.6 Parnell to Morgan, OUT, lovely bowling, Morgan gone! Parnell is enjoying the famously moribund juicy Lord's surface, curving the ball away and kissing the outside edge, giving a simple catch to de Kock. Morgan's brief sally is over and England are wheezing in North Weezy

4.1 Rabada to Hales, OUT, England continue to attack... and SA continue to capitalise! Pitched up in the channel, Hales drives and Amla this time tumbles to his left to snap up another catch. A second for Rabada and England are tottering like an MCC member after a day on the port. Somehow that was only Hales' second ball... One he'll quickly want to forget

4.5 Rabada to Buttler, OUT, throws the bat, thick edged to second... England are five down! Superb catch from Faf du Plessis, that went very quickly as Buttler attempted to thrash it through the covers. Not quite as quickly as England are subsiding, but still

4.6 Rabada to Rashid, OUT, edged and gone - THIS IS ABSURD!!! Rashid goes for a big, booming drive from his first ball, du Plessis scoops it up low to his left this time... and Rabada is on a hat-trick! Perhaps England are trying to get their shocker out of the way before the Champions Trophy, but this is golden-era awful from a country that knows a fair bit about being rubbish at ODIs

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Danny7 on May 30, 2017, 12:25 GMT

    Tanmoy Kar, not really. We battered them in the first game, won a tightly contested game in the second and got battered in the third. Either team would have been rightful to win it and it wouldn't have been luck either way.

  • Tanmoy Kar on May 30, 2017, 5:50 GMT

    England is probably lucky to win the Series.

  • Cricguru on May 29, 2017, 23:46 GMT

    An important facet of cricket is assessing match situation and playing accordingly. Be it T20, ODI or Test cricket. Players (or teams) who have a good sense of it do well. Although nowadays with T20 cricket, shorter boundaries, bigger bats, batting friendly wickets, there is a new trend of playing fearless cricket, no matter what the situation. It really looks good when it comes off but it cant happen all the time. Then what you see is a collapse. It would a good strategy to play someone like a Bairstow or Rahane who can steady the ship. The batsmen have to utilize the allotted overs and give their bowler, at least a chance. So to me, its not a good idea to pack the teams only with power hitters. Similarly, it may not be smart to play too many bits and pieces players (all rounders), even though one may be tempted to on a flat track.

  • ImonG on May 29, 2017, 14:34 GMT

    England does have a batting line up, with some formidable power hitters, but in almost all formats of the game, they tend to have weird batting collapses. Apart from this one, one that comes to my mind is that test match at the Wankhede. When the match situation demanded some attrition, batsman after batsman threw their wicket away by playing airy fairy shots. Both Nasser Hussain and Michael Atherton, later lambasted the batting as "inexcusable considering the pitch conditions they were playing on" Such aggressive intent is fine, and some times that counter attack may bring a side roaring back into the contest. but more often than not, also results in weird collapses. At times, attritional batting is not the worst option to go with.

  •   st6374 on May 29, 2017, 14:30 GMT

    The conditions favoured the bowling side, and credit to the SA bowlers for getting the best out of it. Given the golden run Eng batting has had, this kind of collapse was always around the corner. Doesn't mean Eng can just ignore this collapse, but I don't think they would be losing their sleep over it either.

  • Niall.Litchfield on May 29, 2017, 14:25 GMT

    @supa_saffa - they already have http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283495.html for events like this. Don't know that they have more general collapse "records".

  • aditya.goel07 on May 29, 2017, 13:08 GMT

    The thing is that SA will chase this down pretty easily, but if this was a match in the CT, then England would have won somehow, and no doubt, SA would have helped them immensely. Anyway, waiting eagerly for the tournament proper to start. In my view, India and SA from Group B, and Australia and England from group A will be the semi finalists, with India and England again playing in the final, and India winning the silver.

  • icegreen89 on May 29, 2017, 12:53 GMT

    There is nothing surprising about England collapsing. They do it often. I imagine it may be some comfort for their fans that it's happened before the Champions Trophy rather than during. Perhaps it is now out of their collective systems for a while.

  • JohannK on May 29, 2017, 12:45 GMT

    Conditions favour swing bowling. It was a good toss to win. But credit to the bowlers. Rabada is a class act.

    But what on earth is JPD doing in the team again? Quotas? I guess at some stage he will get a score, but that won't mean anything given the number of chances he has had.

    I hope next time SA needs quick runs in a short time they skip right on to the big hitters rather than allowing the opposition to choke the game by sending in someone like Behardien, who has never taken his chances.

    This game at Lords' could have been much better preparation, had the series been tied.

    In cricket one weak link is the difference between winning a trophy and losing in the knock-out phases. The 2015 WC SF just showed it once again. Let's hope that if SA does not win it, that it will not be because of suspect team selection. The best way to get young black people inspired is to win a trophy with a team boasting people like Rabada, Amla, Maharaj, Tahir.

  • Supa_SAFFA on May 29, 2017, 12:08 GMT

    South African bowling has been the cause of several such absurd collapses in recent years, against Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka. The names of Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander spring to mind. Could we see Cricnfo create a compilation of noteworthy innings collapses from all around the world?

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