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Edgbaston will host a mouth-watering Test match against South Africa in 2022 and Bears legend Allan Donald very much intends to be there.

Joe Root’s side will take on the Proteas in Birmingham over five days starting on Thursday 25 August.

A fantastic tussle is in prospect amid an Edgbaston atmosphere which ‘A.D’ knows well from county and international duty – and describes as “just awesome.”

Pace ace Donald loved having the Bears fans roaring him on in Birmingham when he was leading the Warwickshire bowling attack – and even enjoyed their banter as an opponent when he lined up for his country against England in an Edgbaston Test in 1998.

“It is always a special atmosphere,” he said. “Just awesome. It is fantastic that the South Africa team is coming to Edgbaston next year and I will definitely try to be there. With Covid around it has been a while since we have been able to visit our many friends in Birmingham and we would love to come if we can make it work.

“There is something very special about Tests in Birmingham. The Test match culture in England is unique. Test cricket there has an amazing atmosphere, like nowhere else in the world, and nowhere more than at Edgbaston. It’s phenomenal.

“Even when I played there for South Africa, the Bears fans were amazing to me. I knew that when I got down to the fence at fine leg or third man there would be some banter but it was always in the right spirit. It is always a joy to play there. The crowd and the atmosphere is a little bit intimidating and that’s the experience that awaits the South Africa team next year.”

Allan Donald

That 1998 Test ended in  a draw after rain washed out the final day just as a fascinating finish beckoned, but A.D has witnessed some of the great Tests that Edgbaston has delivered.

“I was there in 2008 when Graeme Smith played that magnificent innings to win the game for South Africa,” he said.”Graeme got back-to-back double centuries in Edgbaston Tests, of course. And in 2005 on the final day of the Ashes Test, the most amazing Test ever, when the Hollies Stand was in overdrive.

“It is brilliant to play in front of the Hollies with that wall of noise they generate and just great to be any big game at Edgbaston, so I very much hope to be there next August.”

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Edgbaston will host up to six days of England cricket with an LV= Insurance Test Match against South Africa (25-29 August) and an ODI against India (9 July).

The venue will also host the biggest day in domestic cricket, Vitality Blast Finals Day (16 July).

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