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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Springboks Back for Test In England

LONDON -- A century partnership between captain Kepler Wessels and Gary Kirsten enabled South Africa to recover from a shaky start Thursday in their first test against England for 29 years.

Kirsten finally fell for 72 but by tea South Africa were comfortably placed at 159 for three, with Wessels unbeaten on 61.

Thursday's test signaled the climax of the rehabilitation of South Africa in world cricket after more than two decades of isolation because of apartheid.

In a small ceremony before the start, South African deputy president Thabo Mbeki met officials in front of the pavilion. With him was Ali Bacher, a player in the South African team of 1965, later his country's captain and now managing director of the United Cricket Board of South Africa.

South Africa returned to test cricket just over two years ago and have since played against West Indies, India, Sri Lanka and Australia. But it was the opening day of the first test at Lord's on Thursday that finally set the seal on their return to the fold.

(Reuters, AP)