Ian Bell would be pretty disappointed that he could not take advantage of the start that he had managed to get in on a green seaming wicket at Edgbaston on the first day of the third test match.
After Australia was bowled out for just 136, England lost one of the openers and Bell came on to bat at his new position of no. 3.
He was willing to dominate straightaway and was playing his shots.
But, just for a second while facing the off spinner Nathan Lyon, he got a bit reckless or that cost him his wicket.
He was on 54 and could easily have gone on to convert that into a century, but, a rush of blood made him go down the track to Lyon who was smart enough to drag the length of the delivery just a little bit to ensure Bell does not get to the pitch of it.
The ball dipped on Bell and he only ended up lofting the ball in the air to be caught at the short midwicket position.
Not too many overs were remaining in the day’s play at that point of time. In fact, only 10 minutes after that, a rain break saw the umpires calling it the stumps. So, Bell would be sitting in the dressing room and would be kicking himself for the shot that he went for. (more…)
The difference between the England squad that had played in the Ashes series 2013-14 and the England squad of now is the number of impact players that are there.
The guys playing at 6, 7 and 8 for England at the moment plays at such a brisk pace that their presence at the crease for even a couple of hours can be enough to get the team in a good position.
This was missing the last time around when the Three Lions had gone to Australia.
It was all about England’s top 4 back then. Once they were gone, the Aussies would be just blowing away the lower middle order.
And, that was the main reason, in none of the 5 test matches; England was able to put a good score on the board.
Test match Cricket is indeed a format where patience matters the most, but, counter attack is also a vital thing.
You’ve got to have players who can take the attack back to the opposition when needed.
So, it’s been pretty smart of the England selectors to give those sorts of players a go this summer.
There was a strong case of Ben Stokes not to be selected and Chris Woakes to be preferred over him as the Warwickshire all rounder had such a great last season.
And, on the other hand, the three test matches that Stokes had played the previous summer, he had a horror of a time. He was getting out on ducks.
So, to still show the faith in him, it’s a very positive decision. (more…)