England hold their breath as Anderson heads for scan

By Sports Desk January 08, 2020

James Anderson was heading for a scan amid a fresh fitness worry on Wednesday, with England team director Ashley Giles saying it "would be desperate" for the veteran to face a new lay-off.

England's record wicket-taker in Test cricket was barely involved with the ball after lunch on day five of the second Test against South Africa in Cape Town.

The tourists won by 189 runs, with Ben Stokes stepping up to take the last three wickets in dramatic fashion.

Concern over an apparent side strain for 37-year-old Anderson was expressed once the match was over, and Giles said on Wednesday morning: "Jimmy will have to have a scan today which we've got all fingers crossed for.

"It would be desperate if Jim is injured again. He's worked so hard to get back in the team."

Anderson has reclaimed his place in the England side following a calf injury, which forced him to miss all but the opening morning of the Ashes Tests against Australia last year.

He took five South African wickets in the first innings at Newlands, and removed two batsmen second time around before being forced out of the attack.

It remains to be seen whether he will be fit for the third Test, which starts in Port Elizabeth on January 16.

"We certainly don't think it's a recurrence of his previous injury," Giles said on BBC Radio 5 Live.

"He bowled like a demon in that first innings. That mix of youth and experience we have in the team is just so valuable and he's been such a great servant. We're holding our breath and fingers crossed for him."

Anderson at least appeared to be in good spirits on Wednesday, as he wrote on Twitter: "What a start to 2020! Every man played their part in a fantastic win. Victory always tastes sweeter when you have to graft into the last hour on day 5!"

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    Siya Kolisi says it is vital Nelson Mandela's legacy continues as the South Africa captain opened up on his role in helping the country fight coronavirus.

    Kolisi, who skippered the Springboks to Rugby World Cup glory last year, was due to launch his foundation later in 2020.

    The outbreak of COVID-19 has launched Kolisi into immediate action and he has partnered with others to make donations to provide vital supplies to frontline medical workers tackling the crisis.

    An Instagram post from the flanker's foundation last week explained: "Whilst the Kolisi Foundation was months from launching with different projects in mind, we couldn't ignore the seriousness of COVID-19 so began to focus our energy and resources on supporting our frontline workers – supplying sanitisers and reusable masks. 

    "We are thankful that we have been able to lean on our incredible partners to support the project and will look to partner with other established organisations in the future to guarantee our work is as impactful as possible, addressing hunger and other areas close to our heart."

    Kolisi said part of his motivation is ensuring the work of former president Mandela continues.

    "I just think his legacy must still continue, the rainbow nation he wanted to see,"he told BBC Breakfast.

    "Actually working partnering up with the foundation, helping the frontline workers, we're all trying to attack the hunger and help the workers. 

    "Just thinking of other people, the way he lived his life, he always wanted to make South Africa better, that's what we're trying to realise to make sure his legacy continues and because we have a beautiful country, so much potential, we can achieve so much. 

    "Hopefully can inspire other people too."

    Kolisi is drawing on his own experiences of playing as part of a team to aid a country that has had over 1,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and has one of the world's strictest lockdowns.

    "It's really tough and I think playing in a team squad, this is going to be a team effort from everyone in South Africa and everyone in general, I think everybody has a role to play," he added. 

    "It's a time for people to stay at home and not leave our houses, we have a complete lockdown our president has acted swiftly. 

    "I think for people who are in a fortunate basis who can help others, food is a big problem at the moment, we're pushing hard on fighting the hunger, making sure people get meals there are a lot kids who go to school just to get one meal.

    "I'm trying to provide for that and making sure we help as much as we can."

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