Blow for Proteas as captain Temba Bavuma ruled out of England World Cup clash

Ben Stokes returned for faltering champions England on Saturday as they made three changes before skipper Jos Buttler opted to field in a crunch Cricket World Cup clash against South Africa.

The star all-rounder, who made 84 in England’s 2019 World Cup final win, is playing his first game of the tournament following a hip injury.

In his absence, England have made a poor start to their title defence, losing twice in three games – including a shock 69-run defeat by Afghanistan last time out in Delhi on Sunday.

Stokes, left-arm quick David Willey and fast bowler Gus Atkinson were all recalled in place of all-rounder Liam Livingstone, left-arm seamer Sam Curran and struggling paceman Chris Woakes.

South Africa were forced into making a late change when captain Temba Bavuma was ruled out through illness, with Aiden Markram now leading the Proteas. Reeza Hendricks replaced opening batsman Bavuma at thew top of the order.

Another loss would leave England struggling to qualify for the semi-finals.

They face a South Africa side also looking to rebound from a surprise reverse after a 38-run defeat by non-Test nation the Netherlands following wins over Australia and Sri Lanka.

Teams for Mumbai

England: Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Harry Brook, Jos Buttler (capt/wkt), David Willey, Adil Rashid, Gus Atkinson, Mark Wood, Reece Topley

South Africa: Quinton de Kock (wkt), Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram (capt), Heinrich Klaasen, David Miller, Marco Jansen, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Gerald Coetzee, Lungi Ngidi.

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