England v New Zealand, 1st Investec Test, Lord's May 16, 2013

A third Root appears at Lord's

ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the opening day at Lord's

Family link of the day
Among the trio of young cricketers utilised by England for 12th man duties was Billy Root, the 20-year-old brother of Joe. Billy, who has played second XI cricket for Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire, Worcestershire, Surrey, and Leicestershire, is currently with the MCC Young Cricketers having progressed through the same club, Sheffield Collegiate, as his older brother and Michael Vaughan and, along with two of his MCC YC colleagues, Adam Dobb and Adam Hose, was charged with bringing drinks and gloves to the batsman as required. Joe was actually the third of the family to play at Lord's this season, with Billy playing against his father, Matt in an MCC vs MCC Young Cricketers match earlier this season.

Reward of the day
The wicket of Jonathan Trott was deserved reward for excellent bowling, catching and captaincy. The delivery, a beauty from left-armer Trent Boult that was angled in but then left Trott, would have been dangerous in any circumstances but, coming after a delivery that was slanted across Trott, found the batsman coming forward just a little tentatively. The edge, low and to the left of Dean Brownlie at third slip, was brilliantly held but the fact that New Zealand even had a third slip in the 54th over of the innings speaks volumes for the positive captaincy of Brendon McCullum and the level of control exerted by his bowlers that allowed him to attack throughout so much of the day.

Shot of the day
This was not a day littered with pleasing strokes. 30 of the day's 80 overs were maidens and England only managed 15 boundaries. Only one of them came between mid-on and mid-off. But there were a couple of drives from Ian Bell that were almost worth the admission money on their own. One of them, sent through the covers off the bowling of Neil Wagner with Bell holding the pose with his right knee on the pitch, left Lord's purring with pleasure. He may not develop into the truly great player some once thought he might, but few can drive as sweetly as Ian Bell.

Wicket of the day
Anyone watching the highlights and seeing Ian Bell's dismissal - bat pushing limply well outside the off stump - may conclude that his downfall was the result of poor batting. But, while this was not a stroke that will fill Bell with any great pride, a great deal of credit was also due to the bowler and his team-mates. As is so often the case, it was not just the delivery that claimed the wicket, but the consequence of many of the deliveries that preceded it. Not only had Martin rendered Bell near to strokeless at one end - he scored off only three of the 50 deliveries he faced from Martin - but Neil Wagner had bowled from over and round the wicket, swinging some back into the batsman and seeing others carry on across them. It does not excuse Bell's poor shot, but it does explain why he was drawn into the stroke. The timing of the wicket, just 10 deliveries before the second new ball became available, was awful for England.

Review of the day
If the introduction of the Decision Review System has taught us anything, it is that the best umpires really are very good indeed. In Aleem Dar this match has one of the best so it was something of a surprise when New Zealand utilised the system after Alastair Cook had been adjudged not out following a leg before appeal off the immaculate Boult. Sure enough, replays showed that, while the ball pitched in line, it would have passed some way over the top of middle stump. It was proof, once again, that it rarely pays to review Dar's decisions.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on May 17, 2013, 6:34 GMT

    This morning's papers go some way to explaining this contentious pitch and absurdly slow outfield: The Olympics are, apparently, to blame: The outfield was relaid after the archery was held there for the 2012 Olympics, and we all know what the weather has been like in England recently. You can't blame the Lord's groundstaff fully, they can't manufacture sunshine or do anything about the fact that yesterday was pretty much the first day of sunshine London has seen in six months.

  • jmcilhinney on May 17, 2013, 6:08 GMT

    @Bishop on (May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT), but that's not the purpose of the DRS. It's purpose is to show, or not, that the umpire was clearly wrong. The umpire was not clearly wrong in this case so the fielding team loses a review.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on May 16, 2013, 21:29 GMT

    Congratulations George, on getting 5 'plays of the day' on arguably one of the most monotonous days of cricket since [*insert boring day here*]...

  • Bishop on May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    Regarding the "review of the day"...the hawkeye footage I saw showed the ball crashing into the top of the off stump. Don't know what footage you were watching George. The DRS decision was 'umpires call' because of the closeness (only half the ball was hitting middle, plus half the ball struck him outside the line), but while I can't criticise Aleem Dar for the original decision, or the system for the final not out result, in these 'line ball' cases I hardly think it is fair that the fielding team lose a review in that they were right...technology showed that Cook was probably out!

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on May 17, 2013, 6:34 GMT

    This morning's papers go some way to explaining this contentious pitch and absurdly slow outfield: The Olympics are, apparently, to blame: The outfield was relaid after the archery was held there for the 2012 Olympics, and we all know what the weather has been like in England recently. You can't blame the Lord's groundstaff fully, they can't manufacture sunshine or do anything about the fact that yesterday was pretty much the first day of sunshine London has seen in six months.

  • jmcilhinney on May 17, 2013, 6:08 GMT

    @Bishop on (May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT), but that's not the purpose of the DRS. It's purpose is to show, or not, that the umpire was clearly wrong. The umpire was not clearly wrong in this case so the fielding team loses a review.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on May 16, 2013, 21:29 GMT

    Congratulations George, on getting 5 'plays of the day' on arguably one of the most monotonous days of cricket since [*insert boring day here*]...

  • Bishop on May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    Regarding the "review of the day"...the hawkeye footage I saw showed the ball crashing into the top of the off stump. Don't know what footage you were watching George. The DRS decision was 'umpires call' because of the closeness (only half the ball was hitting middle, plus half the ball struck him outside the line), but while I can't criticise Aleem Dar for the original decision, or the system for the final not out result, in these 'line ball' cases I hardly think it is fair that the fielding team lose a review in that they were right...technology showed that Cook was probably out!

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  • Bishop on May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    Regarding the "review of the day"...the hawkeye footage I saw showed the ball crashing into the top of the off stump. Don't know what footage you were watching George. The DRS decision was 'umpires call' because of the closeness (only half the ball was hitting middle, plus half the ball struck him outside the line), but while I can't criticise Aleem Dar for the original decision, or the system for the final not out result, in these 'line ball' cases I hardly think it is fair that the fielding team lose a review in that they were right...technology showed that Cook was probably out!

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on May 16, 2013, 21:29 GMT

    Congratulations George, on getting 5 'plays of the day' on arguably one of the most monotonous days of cricket since [*insert boring day here*]...

  • jmcilhinney on May 17, 2013, 6:08 GMT

    @Bishop on (May 16, 2013, 21:27 GMT), but that's not the purpose of the DRS. It's purpose is to show, or not, that the umpire was clearly wrong. The umpire was not clearly wrong in this case so the fielding team loses a review.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on May 17, 2013, 6:34 GMT

    This morning's papers go some way to explaining this contentious pitch and absurdly slow outfield: The Olympics are, apparently, to blame: The outfield was relaid after the archery was held there for the 2012 Olympics, and we all know what the weather has been like in England recently. You can't blame the Lord's groundstaff fully, they can't manufacture sunshine or do anything about the fact that yesterday was pretty much the first day of sunshine London has seen in six months.