By Abhijit Banare
Dec 13, 2013
David Warner‘s unbeaten 49 took Australia to 107 for three at lunch on Day One of the third Ashes Test at Perth. Australia looked set to dominate the first session but the wicket of skipper Michael Clarke an over before the break helped England to pull things back.
Australia started off on a shaky note after opener Chris Rogers was run-out in the second over of the day and Shane Watson too gifted his wicket away scoring 18. But Clarke and Warner played well to help Australia gain momentum.
Under pressure of coming back from 0-2 down, skipper Alastair Cook once again lost the toss and was put into bowl. But on the Perth wicket he wouldn’t have been disappointed. There was good bounce on offer early on.
Stuart Broad though was wayward at the start and Rogers took full advantage directing the leg-side balls for consecutive boundaries in the second over. Rogers turned out to be a touch too ambitious on the next ball when he flicked a delivery towards mid-wicket and set off for a single. England who were sloppy with their fielding in the previous two Tests, got their act together. James Anderson at mid-wicket was quick to pounce on the shot from Rogers and hit the stumps to get the first breakthrough of the day.
In the meanwhile, Warner was positive and calm going about building his innings at ease. Some easy deliveries from Broad further helped Warner’s cause as he collected a few more boundaries. Warner and Watson rebuilt and got the team past fifty in the 10th over. Just when Australia were moving along at a breezy pace, Watson gifted his wicket away. Broad bowled a short of good length delivery. There was nothing much in it to trouble the batsman but Watson preferred to drive at it. The outside edge flew straight to Graeme Swann in the slips. At 52 for two, England had got what they were looking for but failed to strike one more as the two batsmen in form, Clarke and Warner stitched a 54-run partnership.
After the initial movement and bounce, the pitch settled in under sweltering heat. The pacers hardly got the bowl to move and relied more on accuracy. Broad too got his length right since Watson’s wicket. The only option for them was to build the pressure on the batsmen and hope for a false shot. But Warner was in no mood to be tied down. After staying patient against the short deliveries , he backed himself to score a few from those. On one occasion Broad coming over the wicket pitched one short going across Warner. The batsman confidently guided it over thirdman for a boundary. Most of the runs were scored in that area by the two batsmen.
Just before lunch, England had an opportunity send back Warner. The explosive left-hander pulled one back to the bowler, Bresnan on his follow-through wasn’t ready for snatching up that sharp chance. In the same over, Warner whacked a short ball from Bresnan over long-on for a six.
As Australia looked to bag honours in the first session, Graeme Swann managed to get the wicket of Michael Clarke who tried to be a bit to aggressive and hit straight to Cook at mid-wicket. Just one over before lunch, England have fought their way back.
Australia 107 for 3 (David Warner 49*, Michael Clarke 24; Graeme Swann 1 for 1) vs England.
(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)
Also on cricketcountry.com