Quite a thrilling game of cricket was on display on the second day as 16 wickets fell over the course of the day. England added another 72 runs to their overnight total before being bowled out for 361. Australia couldn’t stand the heat generated by the English bowlers, particularly from Graeme Swann, and crumbled to a paltry 128 all out. Surprisingly, the follow-on wasn’t enforced – a decision that looked to have backfired since England also stuttered in their second innings to end at 31/3 at stumps. An interesting third day is on the cards!
Here are the Heroes of the Day:
Stuart Broad (33 runs off 29 balls – 5 fours, 1 six ; 1/26 in 11 overs)
The lanky blond-haired paceman showed he was no mug with the bat down the order. He played a brilliant cameo at No.10, slamming five boundaries before executing a ferocious pull off Australian speedster Peter Siddle for a glorious six. Along with the gutsy Graeme Swann, Broad took the English total past 350 before being the last man out.
With the ball, Broad trapped Australian captain Michael Clarke leg before with a full-length delivery on middle and leg, thus capping a fine day in the field for his side. He does have the qualities of a genuine all-rounder.
Graeme Swann (28 n.o. off 26 balls – 5 fours; 5/44 in 21.3 overs)
Swann showed why he is considered the best off-spinner in the world today. First, he played an effective innings at No.11, sharing a 48-run stand with Stuart Broad, hitting five boundaries along the way. Due to this last-wicket stand, England posted 361, a very good total on a Lord’s pitch.
But the wily bowler wasn’t done yet. He was lucky to get away with a waist-high full toss that crashed into southpaw Chris Rogers, and the bespectacled Aussie was hard done by the LBW decision. Next, he removed the struggling Usman Khawaja for 14, caught by Pietersen. Tightening the screws further, Swann then dismissed Steve Smith, Brad Haddin and Ryan Harris to pick up his 16th five-wicket haul in Tests. Excellent bowling from the veteran spinner, but England will need him to perform at this level once again in the second innings as well.
Ryan Harris (5/72 in 26 overs; 10 runs off 25 balls – 1 four)
The burly Aussie pacer was one of three bowlers who impressed everyone today. Having picked up three wickets in the first innings, Harris returned to dismiss Tim Bresnan for 7, caught behind by Brad Haddin, before removing James Anderson in a similar fashion to complete his third five-wicket haul in Tests and having his name etched on the Lord’s Honours Board.
Interestingly, during Australia’s first innings, Harris became Graeme Swann’s fifth wicket when he gave the spinner the charge and miscued a catch to Kevin Pietersen. Nevertheless, it was a decent performance from the Australian.
Shane Watson (1/45 in 13 overs; 30 runs off 42 balls – 6 fours)
All-rounder Shane Watson can be considered to be extremely unlucky in this series. He got the wicket of England captain Alastair Cook yesterday, and despite bowling his heart out, failed to add to his tally. With the bat, Watson looked extremely positive during his stay at the crease, hitting six boundaries in his 30-run knock before Bresnan deceived him with a full-length delivery around off.
The all-rounder refused to learn from his misuse of the DRS in the last game, taking a review when he was caught plumb in front of the wicket. Nevertheless, he managed to top score for his side, and Australia will look for another solid start from him if they are to salvage this Test.
Peter Siddle (3/4 in 5 overs)
Siddle didn’t do much with the bat in Australia’s first innings, getting out cheaply to swing bowler Jimmy Anderson for just 2. However, he struck back with a vengeance, ripping England’s top order apart (with the exception of Joe Root) to leave the home side tottering at 31/3 at the close of play. Siddle castled Alastair Cook for 8 and Jonathan Trott for a duck before taking out the flamboyant Pietersen with another full-length delivery outside off stump. England will need to play him out very carefully before he causes further damage. Terrific bowling!