Australia in England / Features

England v Australia, 1st Test, Lord's, 3rd day

England looking for their 2005 Randall

So far this fluctuating Test match has closely resembled the Centenary Test at Melbourne in March 1977

Steven Lynch

July 23, 2005

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Will England find a player to repeat Randall's innings of 1977? © Getty Images
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So far this fluctuating Test match has closely resembled the Centenary Test at Melbourne in March 1977 - which, perhaps not coincidentally, was probably the most-hyped England-Australia encounter until this one.

In that showpiece game at the MCG, staged to mark the 100th anniversary of the inaugural Test match, England were cock-a-hoop at bowling the Aussies out for 138 on the first day - until they were rolled over for 95 themselves, with Dennis Lillee taking 6 for 26.

Just as in this match, the Australian batsmen then regrouped, scoring 419 to set a massive target of 463. England didn't make it ... quite. A memorable innings of 174 from Derek Randall, his first Test century, took them a tantalising 46 runs short of victory before Lillee (5 for 139) finally ended the fun to exactly replicate the result of the original game in 1877. So who's going to do a Randall for England this time?

Steven Lynch is the former editor of Cricinfo

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Steven Lynch Steven Lynch won the Wisden Cricket Monthly Christmas Quiz three years running before the then-editor said "I can't let you win it again, but would you like a job?" That lasted for 15 years, before he moved across to the Wisden website when that was set up in 2000. Following the merger of the two sites early in 2003 he was appointed as the global editor of Wisden Cricinfo. In June 2005 he became the deputy editor of Wisden Cricketers' Almanack. He continues to contribute the popular weekly "Ask Steven" question-and-answer column on ESPNcricinfo, and edits the Wisden Guide to International Cricket.
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