England v New Zealand, 3rd Test, Trent Bridge, 3rd day June 7, 2008

Spoons, snorters and showmanship


A be-brimmed Michael Vaughan checks out the ball with Umpire Darrell Hair © Getty Images
 

Wide-brim sunhat wearer of the day

There were plenty of Shreks, Green Giants and lifeguards parading unselfconsciously around Trent Bridge today, but one of the few sunhats was found on Michael Vaughan's head. In fact, curiously, even with all the rain and gloomy conditions to have blighted this series, Vaughan has worn a hat throughout while his team-mates don the standard England caps. It was easy, therefore, to spot him lurking at the unlikely position of deep backward point towards the end of play, his fielding orders falling on deaf ears.

Bowling change of the day

Ten overs into a day which was delayed by gloom, the spotlight was well and truly on James Anderson. With six wickets to his name, there was the enticing prospect that he might become only the third bowler in history to take all ten in an innings. Unfortunately, his radar was for the most part lacking, as was Ryan Sidebottom's at the other end. Into the attack strode Stuart Broad and, with his third ball, sent one a little wider of the off stump to lure Kyle Mills into slapping him straight to Kevin Pietersen at backward point. Two balls later, Broad found one to move off the seam to Iain O'Brien, knocking over his off stump - a delivery that would have accounted for far more accomplished batsmen - to complete a superb double-wicket maiden and, soon after, New Zealand were dismissed for 123 and forced to follow on.

Tough chance of the day

Broad's first ball in New Zealand's second innings was wide yet spooned by How off a thick outside edge. Paul Collingwood leapt spectacularly high at second slip, somehow getting a hand on it, but not enough of a hand. It was reminiscent of his gravity-defying leap at backward point to pluck a scorching Matthew Hayden drive, during the one-day series prior to the 2005 Ashes. Collingwood had another half-chance at second slip towards the end of New Zealand's first innings when Gareth Hopkins edged Anderson just short.

Snorter of the day

While Anderson and Sidebottom both struggled with their lines, Broad rarely strayed from a probing off-stump line, and a length which had batsman unsure whether to lunge forward or creep backwards. He saved his best for Brendon McCullum, though, the ball rearing up off a length and leaving the batsman's fishy waft outside the off stump. All of England begged Darrell Hair to raise his finger but the Australian refused to oblige. In fact, Hair has been very much a not-outer since his return to top-flight umpiring in the second Test at Old Trafford, and has again officiated with

Showmanship of the day

At 33 for 2, out strode Ross Taylor to join McCullum - New Zealand's two star batsmen. After stepping over the boundary rope, he marched to the crease by shadowing a lofted drive, playing a savage pull and flashing several apparently wide balls through the covers. New Zealand were in dire straits, still trailing England by 208, but Taylor is no shrinking violet, even before reaching the crease. It was a brief but entertaining insight into the mind of New Zealand's young dazzler who soon departed for an undazzling 14.

Lucky misjudgement of the day

New Zealand had slipped to 58 for 3. Only McCullum stood in England's way, but a near-fatal misjudgement almost cost him his wicket on 20. Facing Anderson and expecting an outswinger, the bowler produced a big indipper to which McCullum shouldered arms. The slips barely bothered appealing, racing forward in anticipatory expectation of Steve Bucknor raising his finger. Famously slow to lift his right arm, the players and crowd waited and waited, while McCullum shuffled nervously with his bat under his arm. But Bucknor remained unmoved, and New Zealand continued to defy England's attack.

Will Luke is a staff writer at Cricinfo