Third Test match

England v South Africa 1929

Played at Leeds, Saturday, Monday, Tuesday, July 13, 15, 16. England won by five wickets. England, while in the end they won by five wickets, had some anxious moments on the last day before this result was achieved. Left with 184 to get, they lost two wickets before lunch for 20, and at half past three, despite a partnership between Bowley and Woolley that produced 85 runs in seventy minutes, there were five men out for 110. Bowley, Hendren and Leyland had all been dismissed in a quarter of an hour by Vincent and anything might then have happened. Woolley however, found a safe partner in Tate and, 76 being added in three-quarters of an hour, the runs were hit off without further loss.

The previous England teams not having given entire satisfaction, the younger element failing to rise to the occasion, the Selection Committee brought in Woolley, Bowley and Freeman for O'Connor, Killick and Robins. These changes were all to the good, Woolley, scoring 178 runs in the match, for once out, fielding very well and bowling with effect, Bowley playing two useful innings, and Freeman in all, obtaining ten wickets. Yet, although England won, certain inequalities, which, against Australia, might have proved fatal to their chances, obtruded themselves. Misfortune still dogged the South Africans, who had to call upon J. P. Duminy, who had played against the M. C. C. In South Africa, and who was in Europe on business, to make up the side. Siedle, unable to take part in the first two matches, carne into the team and Quinn and Vincent were again included. Ochse, Christy, McMillan, Dalton and Cameron, the last-named still suffering from the effects of his injury at Lord's, stood down. Van der Merwe was the wicket-keeper.

Deane this time won the toss but South Africa were all dismissed in four and a quarter hours, while England scored 106 for two wickets. Siedle was bowled with only one run on the board but Catterall batted very well, adding 74 with Mitchell and, with Morkel, putting on 45. Third out at 120, Catterall, who scored well all round, ended a good innings with a deplorable stroke when he tried to mow Freeman round to square leg. There were eight men out for 170, but Vincent, driving tremendously, and Van der Merwe added 49 in forty minutes. Last out, Vincent hit four 6's and six 4's during a stay of seventy minutes. Freeman had a curious experience; being hit for 34 before taking a wicket, and Vincent scoring 47 off him. Still, he bowled his leg-breaks uncommonly well for two hours after lunch when he obtained all his seven wickets

Sutcliffe being out at quarter past six, Duckworth was sent in and next morning batted so pluckily and well that his partnership with Hammond realised 55 runs in seventy minutes. Hammond played in most correct style but the best batting was that of Woolley who, eighth to leave at 295, hit a 6 and eleven 4's in scoring 83 out of 146 in less than two hours. Leyland helped to add 106 in seventy-five minutes. At lunch-time, England had 270 runs on the board for five wickets, but the last five fell in three-quarters of an hour afterwards for 58, Quinn and Vincent both bowling admirably. The South African fielding; as in the first two matches, was brilliant, Owen-Smith, when he caught Tate, running hard at long on and Duminy, when he held a hard cut at point low with the left hand, doing great work.

When South Africa, 92 behind, went in a second time Larwood, having strained a tendon, was absent from the England team but so effectively did Tate and Woolley bowl that when play ceased seven wickets had fallen for 116 and South Africa were thus only 24 ahead. Next morning Owen-Smith and Quinn added 51 and the ninth wicket fell at 172 but then came a remarkable partnership, Bell, as at Lord's, giving Owen-Smith wonderful support. So magnificently did Owen-Smith bat that not only did he reach his hundred but the last wicket realised 103 runs in sixty-five minutes. His innings was not flawless for he gave two chances but as a display of skilful and plucky batting it could not have been bettered. At the wicket for two hours and three-quarters, he hit two 6's and fifteen 4's. The partnership was a record for the last wicket for South Africa. When Owen-Smith and Bell returned to the pavilion the cheering was so loud and prolonged as to suggest they might have won the match for their side. Their Splendid batting put life into the closing stages in which, as in the first innings, Woolley carried off the honours. For accuracy in placing and power and ease of execution, Woolley's glorious off-side hitting will aways be an abiding memory.

© John Wisden & Co