Ashes 2013: Chris Rogers' maiden ton anchors Australia on Day Two at Chester-le-Street

Chris Rogers saved Australia from a muddle to help them finish the day on 222 for five © Getty Images

By Nishad Pai Vaidya

Aug 10, 2013

Chris Rogers‘ maiden Test century has helped Australia finish Day Two at 222 for five in the fourth Ashes Test at Chester-le-Street, Durham. After bowling England out early in the day for 238, Australia were dominated by Stuart Broad in the morning, but Shane Watson and Rogers resurrected them and Australia were only 16 runs short at the close of play.

England entered Day Two on 238 for nine and weren’t allowed a run as Jackson Bird bowled James Anderson.

In reply, Australia were rocked by Broad, who got good shape away from the left-handers. Both David Warner and Usman Khawaja were out because of their indecision. They were unsure whether to play or leave. As a result, Warner dragged one back onto his stumps, whereas Khawaja got an inside edge into Matt Prior’s gloves.

Australia finally had the Decision Review System (DRS) go their way. England had reviewed a leg-before call, but it had pitched outside leg to Rogers. Later, in the over, there was a noise as it went past the bat and Prior pouched it safely. Tony Hill gave him out and Rogers was stunned. He consulted Michael Clarke and took the review. Hot Spot showed that there was a deflection off the back-pad and nothing on the bat. The third-umpire then checked for the leg-before and although it was pitching in line, it was merely clipping the stumps. As the original appeal was for caught behind, Rogers was given a lease of life, even as England were perplexed.

After lunch, Steven Smith lost his wicket as he edged Tim Bresnan to the wicket-keeper. In walked Watson and he was cautious early on. Even Rogers had a few tough moments as he was caught in a few awkward positions. Broad troubled him a lot and at one moment, Rogers was in the air as he dealt with one that came in sharply.

The ball was doing a lot and the batsmen had to be watchful. Rogers got to his fifty in iffy fashion as he edged one to first-slip. As it was falling short, Graeme Swann dived across from second slip, but only got a hand to it. Rogers ran to the other end to complete his fifty.

Once Watson got his eye in, he was finding the boundaries. One shot that would stand out was a ferocious pull that fetched him four over square-leg. Later, Anderson was driven through the covers and down the ground which showed that Watson was in form. He got to his fifty and that was a huge relief considering his struggles in the previous games.

At the other end, Rogers kept fighting and neared his maiden ton. There were a few nervous moments as a few top-edges off Swann fell short of the fielders. With Rogers on the brink of a century, Watson flicked a delivery down the leg-side into Prior’s gloves. Their partnership of 129 had put Australia in a good position after being in a precarious position.

Rogers was defending and waiting for the opportunity. England built the pressure, but then he swept Swann behiond square for a boundary. Rogers took his helmet off and raised his bat. The Australian dressing room were up on their feet to applaud their hero.

That was the last significant event of the day as the umpires felt it was dark and the players went off. Australia would go back a very happy unit, but there is a lot of work to be done. England will take the new ball tomorrow in all likelihood.

Interesting day’s play ahead.

Brief scores:

England 238 (Alastair Cook 51; Nathan Lyon 4 for 42) lead Australia 222 for 5 (Chris Rogers 101*, Shane Watson 68; Stuart Broad 4 for 48) by 16 runs.

Full Scorecard

Photo Gallery 

(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and anchor for the site’s YouTube Channel. His Twitter handle is @nishad_44)