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Anderson back in action as England in draw

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Benoni (South Africa) (AFP)

England fast bowler James Anderson bowled 11 overs and picked up a wicket on Wednesday in his first outing after more than four months out of action because of injury.

Chris Woakes was England's most successful bowler, taking three for 48 as the tourists bowled out a Cricket South Africa Invitation XI for 289 on the second day of a non-first-class two-day match at Willowmoore Park. England, leading by 20 runs on the first innings, declined the chance to bat again as the match ended in a draw.

"It was a good run-out for us," said Woakes, who took all three of his wickets in the space of 11 balls after lunch.

Anderson, who suffered a calf injury after bowling four overs in the first Test against Australia at Edgbaston in August, bowled two spells. He sent down six overs with the new ball, conceding 30 runs, and a more impressive five-over spell after lunch when he took one for seven.

Anderson ended a 131-run third wicket stand between Kabelo Sekhukhune (65) and Jacques Snyman (79) when he had Sekhukhune caught behind. Woakes followed up with his three-wicket burst, using the short ball effectively.

"It was a different role, really, bowling a few bouncers. The wicket wasn't responding too much from a length, so at lunchtime we felt we had to change it up a bit, find different ways to get wickets."

Three of England's front-line bowlers – Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad and Jack Leach – did not travel to Benoni because of illness. All-rounder Ben Stokes was not part of the match squad after only arriving on Tuesday but took the field as a substitute fielder and held a catch.

England will play a three-day first-class match against South Africa A at the same venue, starting on Friday. The first Test starts in Centurion on December 26.

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