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May 18, 2009
Wicket of the day
After the chance for his maiden Test wicket went begging yesterday, it looked as though Tim Bresnan wouldn't get off the mark during his debut series. However, in a show of faith by Andrew Strauss, Bresnan was handed the ball this morning even though Stuart Broad or Graham Onions would have been the likelier option. And, finally, the moment Bresnan had been waiting for arrived when Brendan Nash flicked an innocuous delivery straight into the hands of square leg. After waiting the best part of two Tests to open his account, he only had to wait another two balls for his second scalp when Denesh Ramdin edged to third slip. The smile said it all: Bresnan at last had a Test bowling average.
Sub(s) of the day
Once a Test has started, England send their omitted players back to county cricket so they aren't sat on the sidelines. This means that a mixture of odd names crop up on scorecards from year to year when a county player, sometimes a virtual unknown, makes his name in the field. The most famous, of course, is Gary Pratt from the 2005 Ashes but there have been others such as Paul Weekes at Lord's in 1995 and Ben Spendlove at Edgbaston in 1998. Here it was the turn of local youngsters Scott Borthwick and Karl Turner to savour their moments in the field. Borthwick held catches to remove Lendl Simmons and Nash, while Turner had the thrill of the match-winning take at fine leg. However, unlike Pratt, they'll be no open-top bus tour to follow.
Swing of the day
James Anderson's development as a Test bowler is characterised by a number of factors, but none more so than his mastery of swing. He can now make the ball talk almost at will and his final-day performance was a perfect example, with the over to remove Jerome Taylor a particular classic. Two outswingers were sandwiched either side of an inswinger, then came the killer ball that pitched full, curved past the outside edge and knocked back off stump. As with the delivery to remove Sulieman Benn they were almost wasted on the lower order. Anderson wants to be saving them for Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke.
Catch of the day
Overnight it was expected that Matt Prior would be able to resume his wicketkeeping duties on the final day, but medical advice in morning told him otherwise. It meant more work behind the stumps for Paul Collingwood and he continued to hold his own. He was desperate for a catch, and with two wickets remaining he got his moment when Anderson found Shivnarine Chanderpaul's edge and the ball nestled safely in the gloves. All his team-mates congratulated him as Collingwood grinned from ear to ear, while Prior gave a warm round of applause on the balcony.
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