Ashes: First Test Preview
Ashes started with all the emotions and expectation what it had been holding since centuries. It began in Cardiff where England outplayed Australians with the failure of Steve Smith in both the innings. Moeen Ali was taken lightly than before and considering attack on him encountered a lot of Australian batsman. This brought a huge collapse on the Australian dugout which resulted in a big English win of this summer. A lot of critics raise the questions regarding the techniques of Steve Smith. The inability of Australian pace attack to bowl Root, Brad Haddin’s drop proved costly and heated the media around Britain and Australia. A lot of pressure was shouldered to Australian team stating their inadequacy in the field of Test cricket outside Australia in the adverse conditions.
In the post-match presentation when Clarke was asked about slowing the test match too much than the Australian standard, he briskly replied,” We played our natural game” as mentioned in www.theguardian.com.
This made the upcoming 2nd test match much more interesting than what “Home of Cricket” Lords could merely expect. Cardiff was considered as an epic start for English dugout and a big Ashes win was already expected out of this English side.
Second Ashes Test: Analysis and Preview
The test match of Lords began with all the special media effects, expectation, and surprising decision of Brad Haddin not to get involved in the playing 11 of 2nd test match stating a personal reason. With comments from the cricketing world outside about Australia’s approach for the game needing an improvement, it was a crucial toss for Australia to come back hard at England.
So as per the doctor’s order toss was marked in their favor and rest is they say” no looking back” until this point of time. Chris Rogers and David Warner started very swiftly. Warner was in more attacking mode as always. While, Rogers was giving the right direction to the bad balls delivered to him. Warner fancied his chance against an emerging wicket taker Moeen Ali at a crucial time and gave away his valuable wicket. This was supposed to make a pressure to Steve Smith, current backbone of Australia’s batting.
Smith and Rogers Tearing the English Attack
But smith had a different plan. He sat up the tone against all the bowlers that come along his way. Meanwhile, Chris Rogers developed a golden touch in his bat. These two free flowing stroke makers shattered the English bowling, tangled the record books and built a serious innings. Smith went on to make his maiden double ton and what better place than Lords he could ever expect to get the milestone? Similarly Rogers prove the critics what nerves an old guy could hold on and went on to score 173 that helped Australia post mammoth 563/8 Dec. on board in the 2nd day of the 2nd test match. Not only that debutant Paul Nevill scored 45* to begin his test career against the most competent opponent.
England on other side began their batting in the most horrible way expected. The openers couldn’t encounter the swing and seem as well as speed in which Australian bowlers operated. At one stage they were reduced to 40/4. Australian was flying high as England needed some resilient effort to come out of this staggering condition. Captain Cook and all-rounder Ben stokes did exactly do what was required. Stokes brought the momentum back in the game with a quick fire 87 of 128 balls. Similarly, Cook played an inning of 96 of 233 balls. His stay at the crease was for 347 minutes. He fought hard but missed a well fought hundred. When everything was looking right and momentum shifted backward towards England, Mitchell Marsh proved to be way too handy. He proved his ability to take wickets in crisis could add cohesiveness in this Australian side. As a result English side bundled out for 312. Constant fall of wicket after a huge partnership resulted in the collapse of the England innings.
Now that shift back in momentum and healthy lead resulted in 108/0 for the Australians and they look forward to capture the 2nd test as convincingly as it possibly could. Hence, it’s all looking Australia’s test match. England needs an absolute miracle even to draw this test match and keep the lead alive in this series. It’s supposed to be another cracker of a test match, much more than it is expected.