'You don't want to poke the bear' – Elgar pleased England fired up 'angry man' Nortje

By Sports Desk August 19, 2022

Dean Elgar declared "you do not want to poke the bear" after "angry man" Anrich Nortje played a big part in South Africa's thrashing of England at Lord's.

The tourists took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series inside three days, bowling Ben Stokes' side out for 165 and 149 to win by an innings and 12 runs.

England were unable to live with a hostile Proteas pace quartet, spearhead Kagiso Rabada named man of the match after he took 5-52 in the first innings and 2-27 on Friday.

Marco Jansen (2-13) and Lungi Ngidi (1-15) also did damage after spinner Keshav Maharaj took 2-35, as England meekly folded to lose their perfect record under captain Stokes and head coach Brendon McCullum.

It was the rapid Nortje who was South Africa's main man on the third day, though, making an unbeaten 28 as he was peppered with short balls before charging in to take 3-47.

Proteas captain Elgar said of the fast bowler's performance: "It was some of the quickest bowling I have seen.

"The catch our keeper [Kyle] Verreynne took to get rid of Jonny Bairstow was one of the quickest balls he has ever had to catch and it was a pretty big wicket at the time.

"It was a hostile spell of bowling. He is an angry man and you don't want to poke the bear. He bowls at 90 mph. It's great to have him in my changing room."

Elgar was surprised to wrap up the victory just over halfway through the match and vowed to celebrate in style.

He added on the BBC's Test Match Special: "I can't [believe it has finished so quickly] but I think I will when I wake up tomorrow with a hangover.

"It was a team effort. There were a few standout performances but everyone played their part, including the guys who weren't playing. So it is a pretty good squad effort."

Much has been made of England's new aggressive approach to Test cricket, but Elgar will be sticking to his tried and tested formula.

He said: "I'm still a purist when to comes to Test cricket. I don't stuff around with too many styles of play. I think the game demands and kinda deserves it."

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