Ashes 2013: Talking points of Day 2 of Lord’s Test

Australia had a tough time with DRS yet again as Phil Hughes was adjudged out by Kumar Dharmasena despite third umpire finding it tough to spot conclusive evidence while Shane Watson wasted his review © Getty Images

Australian batsmen yet again lost their plot as England dominated the day’s play. Abhijit Banare presents a quick recap of how the day unfolded.

The only thing common between the second and the third day of Lord’s Test is that the spectators will be welcoming Tim Bresnan yet again on Saturday morning. In between the first ball of the day’s play and the last one till stumps, 16 wickets fell at the cost 231 runs with a bowler each from both teams earning their name on the Lord’s honours board for their five-wicket haul as England appear in control of the second Ashes Test. Here’s a summary of the day’s play:

1. Australia begin on an optimistic note

While Steven Smith pulled of some magic towards the end of first day, Ryan Harris struck on the first delivery dismissing Tim  Bresnan thereby opening up the chances of his five-wicket haul which he achieved comfortably by sending back James Anderson. England eventually managed 361 thanks to the final wicket stand between Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann added 48.
The scripting of Australia’s proceedings appears to be a bit predictable with the bowlers raising hopes and the batsmen ending up in a terrible mess. When you’ve a weak batting, you just can’t ignore certain logical predictions.

2. Graeme Swann spins the web as Aussies batsmen fumble yet again
The brittle Australian batting ensured that the Lord’s pavilion area was very busy. And the wrecker-in-chief this time around was Graeme Swann as he became the first bowler to bag a five-wicket haul at Lord’s in an Ashes Test after Hedley Verity in 1934. While England bowled well, the Australian batsmen went back to the dressing room having played some dreadful shots. Rogers’ LBW, Phil Hughes’ invisible edge and Ashton Agar running himself out were some of them. Australia yet again weren’t on target with their use of Decision Review System (DRS).

3. Shane Watson still oblivious to using DRS properly
One may not be sure if the entire Australian team is having a cold war with the DRS, but Shane Watson surely has to sort out his relations with the troubled technology. For the second consecutive time Watson’s used up his review right at the start of Australia’s innings leaving the rest of the batsmen right at the edge. It’s threatening to become a routine of watching the big man stomping his feet right in front of the off-stump and the fast bowlers hitting the pads as consistently Malinga’s yorkers crashing on to stumps. And above that a DRS doing no good for the team and on Friday Rogers folded up in a spot of bother and hesitated from using one for his own.

Well going by Darren Lehmann’s post-match press conference, Rogers was the one who insisted Watson on going for DRS. Well that surely was a big sacrifice by Rogers.

4. Chris Rogers and other bizarre dismissals
What’s the best delivery these days to get a wicket? Full Toss! Yes Steven Smith foxed a well-set Jonny Bairstow on day one who gave a simple return catch to the bowler. Maybe Graeme Swann took a cue from the part-timer and went a step ahead by bowling a high full toss as it flew directly into Chris Roger’s body to hit just around the waist. Swann and co. were optimistic of that ball hitting the stumps; unfortunately even Marais Erasmus thought the same. Watson having wasted a review prompted Rogers to accept the decision. However, replays showed the ball passing nowhere near the stumps. Eventually, except for Australians, everybody had a good laugh.

Even Phil Hughes’ was dismissed in an interesting manner. Having asked for a review after being adjudged out, the hot spot wasn’t conclusive enough for the third umpire to overrule the decision and neither was there any sound of a nick. Well, just as a piece of information, the third umpire according to rules couldn’t have changed the decision. Clause 3.3 of the DRS consultation makes a mention that the third umpire in case of inconclusive evidence can only pass on the information as a fact. Hence Kumar Dharmasena stuck to his original decision and Hughes was on his way back.

5. Shane Warne inducted into ICC Hall of fame and Michael Vaughan stuck in lift
The only Australian who appeared interesting for the fans around was Shane Warne who was inducted in the ICC Hall of Fame in presence of his parents and fiancée Elizabeth Hurley. While Warne received the honour, the spectators kept cheering for the beautiful Liz Hurley which even left host Nasser Hussain slightly amused. Apart from that, pop singer Mick Jagger was the star attraction among the spectators along with British PM David Cameron.

While the day’s play went on smoothly, things surely weren’t fine for former skipper Michael Vaughan and eight others as they were stuck in a lift for almost 35 minutes.

England lost three quick wickets in their second innings; but that is how they trick their opposition it seems after they recovered from a similar situation in the first innings. As we move forward to day three, the game is firmly in the clutches of the home side.

Click here to read all the talking points of Ashes 2013

(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)