England Win 3rd ODI: Series Tied Despite DRS Controversy

England have beaten South Africa by 2 wickets in Johannesburg to level the ODI series 1-1 despite DRS controversy.

With several changes having been made from the team that was beaten comprehensively in the first game before the 2nd wash washed away in Durban on Friday.

South Africa made a solid start with the bat, with captain de Kock again finding his rhythm on his way to an impressive 69.

Despite South Africa losing their 1st wicket early, with the extra pace of Saqib Mahmood getting the better of Hendricks, they slowly but steadily made their way to 89-1 when the controversial DRS reared it's ugly head.

Rashid got one to stick and Bavuma was caught in front LBW. So far so good, the only question (at least we thought at the time) was whether the ball had bounced too high. South Africa sent the review upstairs to the 3rd umpire, veteran Aleem Dar for clarification.

While working through the process, ultra edge malfunctioned and was not available for the review. However with a clear gap between bat and ball and with ball tracking showing it would have gone on to hit the stumps, Bavuma was on his way.

All good so far.

The very next ball, Rashid got one to turn into vd Dussen's pads and the finger went up. With South Africa having reviewed the first decision, vd Dussen headed to the locker room believing the team was unable to review the decision, but was stopped at the boundary and advised that he could review it, which he did. Ball tracking showed the ball missing the stumps and he was reprieved.

With such a controversial and confusing call, cue the debate. Was it the right decision to award South Africa their review back due to the technical malfunction.

According to article 3.6.8 of the ICC's ODI playing conditions it states the following which is relevant to this incident:

"A player review categorised as 'unsuccessful' may be reinstated by the ICC match referee at his/her sole discretion (if appropriate after consultation with the ICC technical official and/or the television broadcast director) if the player review could not properly be concluded due to a failure of the technology."
"any such decision shall be final and shall be taken as soon as possible, being communicated to both teams once all the relevant facts have been ascertained by the ICC match referee. A player review categorised as 'unsuccessful' shall not be reinstated if, despite any technical failures, the correct decision could still have been made using the other available technology."

With the clear gap between bat and ball, the review should not have been reinstated as the technical failure did not result in the wrong call being made. However vd Dussen didn't make the most of his extra life with Moeen bowling him for just 5. So, moving on.

Despite some questionable bowling at the death by Chris Jordan, who had previously bowled well earlier in the inning, England restricted South Africa to just 256-7 in large part due to the excellent spin bowling of Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid.

England got off to the perfect start with Jonny Bairstow smashing Nigidi to all corners of the ground. With a strike rate north of 186, Bairstow raced to 43 off just 31 balls before falling victim to Sipamla. When England lost Roy and Morgan quickly after that, you'd be forgiven for fearing the worst.

However a combination of intelligent batting and calculated risks by Joe Denly and Joe Root saw England to 162 before Root was dismissed by spinner Shamsi.

Denly joined at the crease by Tom Banton continued to nudge England towards their total before a late flurry of wickets saw England finish with 8 down, all be it with plenty of overs left in the game.

With Friday's rain-out, England have tied the ODI series following their 3-1 test series victory. Now comes the T20 leg of the tour.

England will be happy to come away with the victory following a very sloppy start to the series. Morgan made the right decision to reintroduce Moeen and Rashid to the team today, they were the difference in the middle overs and they got key wickets at the right time.

Quotes from the game:

Eoin Morgan

"I thought we bowled really well. We had the better conditions but the guys started really with Adil [Rashid] and Moeen [Ali] coming in and showing their value. Adil in particular, his control and variation was outstanding. It was disappointing to limp over the line. Ideally we would have chased it four or five down. We would have liked to win commandingly.

"Tom Banton showed lot of promise, Joe Denly's two knocks were really good, Saqib came in and bowled beautifully, and likewise Parky [Matt Parkinson] in the first game. We showed a lot of promise but we need to develop our ruthlessness."

Adil Rashid

I felt good today. It has been a while since I played and I was eager to get out there with the boys. The ball came out nicely - it was nice to play on a spicy wicket with turn and bounce."

"It's nice to be back. I love playing white-ball cricket with England. My shoulder has not been quite right for about a year now. It's gotten a lot better and I'm slowly getting better and now it's about strengthening it."

Quinton de Kock

"We thought it was getting tight at the end. We gave ourselves a sniff and it was cool to make it tough for the England guys. Being captain takes a lot of getting used to, but the guys help me a lot on and off the field. I'm there just to make the final decisions. The energy of our players stood out for me. I really enjoyed that the most."


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