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Friday, November 12, 1999 Published at 17:18 GMT

England new boys dig deep

Chris Adams clears fifty for England

England 1st innings 271-7 (Adams 84, Flintoff 65)

New boys Andrew Flintoff and Chris Adams have saved more red faces by stabilising England's first innings, following an upper order collapse against a combined Free State/Griqualand West XI.

England lost the toss and were put in to bat. Despite favourable conditions, openers Mike Atherton and Mark Butcher were out inside the first 11 overs.

[ image: Andrew Flintoff: Out last ball]
Andrew Flintoff: Out last ball
Butcher in particular needed a good spell at the crease to bolster his position in the team, after some woeful early tour performances.

Instead, he was caught and bowled for just three, giving him a lamentable total of 27 in five innings for England.

Atherton was clean bowled soon afterwards for 26. Captain Nasser Hussain put some steel into the innings, notching up 41 before being coaxed out, caught and bowled, by a determined home side attack.

Michael Vaughn and Alec Stewart contributed 14 and 19 apiece before joining the steady trudge back to the pavilion.

It was left to Adams and Flintoff to retrieve the innings, adding 132 to England's total in 41 overs with a maturity of play that belied the fact that this is both players' first senior tour.

Both men were out before stumps, with Adams belting out 10 boundaries and Flintoff unfortunate to be given lbw from the last ball of the day.

England face their first Test against South Africa in Johannesburg in two weeks.


England First Innings Close

M A Butcher c Liebenberg b Bakkes 3 M A Atherton b Vorster 26 N Hussain c Bossenger b Bakkes 41 M P Vaughan c Gidley b van der Wath 14 A J Stewart b Roe 19 C J Adams c Brooker b van der Wath 84 A Flintoff lbw b Bakkes 65 G M Hamilton not out 8 Extras b3 lb3 w1 nb4 11 Total 7 wkts (89.5 overs) 271 Fall: 1-25 2-33 3-86 4-94 5-127 6-259 7-271 To Bat: D Gough, A D Mullally, P C R Tufnell. Bowling: van der Wath 20 0 72 2 Bakkes 20.5 7 50 3 Roe 20 6 62 1 Vorster 11 4 53 1 Gidley 18 5 28 0

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