By Shrikant Shankar
Dec 7, 2013
Australia struck thrice in the morning session on Day Three of the second Ashes 2013-14 Test at the Adelaide Oval. England entered lunch with their score at 116 for four. They trail Australia’s 570 for nine declared by 454 runs. Ian Bell is batting on 29 and Ben Stokes is on zero.
Joe Root was the first wicket to fall for 15, before Kevin Pietersen was dismissed cheaply for four. Michael Carberry scored his first Test half-century before falling for 60 just before lunch was taken.
The day began with England at 35 for one, trailing by 535 runs. It was slow going on Saturday morning as Ryan Harris and Mitchell Johnson bowled consecutive maiden overs first up. Root got the first run of the day with a single behind square on the leg side off Harris.
Carberry got his first runs of the day with a two towards the third-man region. He then tucked a straight delivery from Harris for two runs through square-leg.
Nathan Lyon was brought into the attack quickly. Carberry looked positive against the off-spinner as he whacked a sweep for two runs through square-leg. Root leaned in and drove Johnson for a four through the covers. Johnson drifted one on Carberry’s pads and he placed that behind square on the leg side for a four.
Carberry came down the pitch and drove Lyon for a four through covers. Root looked to attack Lyon and perished immediately. He slog-swept a length delivery but did not connect all that well. Chris Rogers took a simple catch running forwards from deep square-leg.
Pietersen was the next batsman. He guided a length delivery through the slip cordon for two runs to get off the mark. But his stay was short-lived as Peter Siddle dismissed him for four. He came down the pitch and clipped the ball straight to short mid-wicket. George Bailey juggled with it but took the catch in the third attempt.
Bell came in at No 5 and he got off the mark with two runs through covers. He then came down the track and lofted Lyon for a six over long-off. Siddle bowled one on Bell’s pads and he worked it away for a four in front of square on the leg side.
Lyon dropped one short and Carberry cut that off the back-foot in front of point for a four. He then cut one in the same region for a single to get to his first Test half-century. A few deliveries later, Bell came down the pitch again and lofted Lyon for another six. This time it was over long-on.
Carberry then got a couple of fours off Siddle before Bell drove a full delivery from Harris through covers for a four. Suddenly, the England batsmen went into a shell and played four maiden overs in-a-row.
In that fourth over, Shane Watson dismissed Carberry for 60. The batsman pulled the last ball of the over to David Warner in front of square on the leg side. Warner took a stunning left-handed catch.
Debutant Stokes was the new man in. Johnson was back and he bowled one straight to the slips. The Barmy Army started singing, reminding him of how he bowled three years before. Bell then got a back of a length delivery from Johnson and he punched that off the back-foot over gully for a four. Lunch was taken with England trailing Australia by 454 runs.
Australia 570 for 9 decl. (Chris Rogers 72, Shane Watson 51, Michael Clarke 148, George Bailey 53, Brad Haddin 118, Ryan Harris 55*; Stuart Broad 3 for 98) lead England 116 for 4 (Michael Carberry 60; Mitchell Johnson 1 for 24) by 454 runs.
(Shrikant Shankar is a writer/reporter at CricketCountry.com. Previously he has done audio commentary for various matches involving India, Indian Premier League and Champions League Twenty20 for ESPNSTAR.com. You can follow him on Twitter @Shrikant_23)
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