England v Australia, Champions Trophy, Group A, Edgbaston June 8, 2013

When 'out' doesn't mean 'out'

Plays of the day from the Group A match between England and Australia

Selection of the day
It was some surprise that Steven Finn was not included in the England side. Finn is currently No. 3 in the ODI bowling rankings and much of the warm-up to this game was dominated by speculation over his fitness. So it seemed odd when Finn, having come through the third ODI against New Zealand at Trent Bridge, was omitted with Alastair Cook specifying that it was a selection based on form not fitness. Bearing in mind that Graeme Swann was declared unavailable due to back spasms on the morning of the game, it left England without three players - the other being Kevin Pietersen - who are all expected to play a large role in future encounters between these sides. The England camp strenuously denied the conspiracy theory that any of the players, and Finn in particular, were been kept back to deny Australia further exposure to them ahead of the Ashes.

Spat of the day
Both umpires were obliged to intervene after Matthew Wade vehemently expressed his annoyance with Jonathan Trott after an incident which left the Australia keeper sprawling on the pitch. Replays suggested it was simply a misunderstanding and that Wade, in attempting to collect an errant throw, had tripped over Trott's bat. Wade, apparently believing that Trott had hung out his bat on purpose, was clearly irritated and treated Trott to a full expression of his feelings. Trott appeared unruffled and unimpressed, but the umpires intervened before the incident escalated.

Decision of the day
Ravi Bopara had the odd distinction of being given out despite everyone on the ground knowing he wasn't. Umpire Kumar Dharmasena, standing at square leg, noticed a bail on the floor moments after Bopara, on 5, had faced a delivery from James Faulkner and asked the TV umpire, Billy Bowden, to review what had happened. Bowden - and every spectator in a sold-out Edgbaston - subsequently saw that one of the bails had fallen off, not due to the ball or due to Bopara's foot or back-lift, but simply due to a gust of wind. As one wag said on Twitter, England's innings was so dull that even a bail had dropped off. But Bowden somehow pressed the wrong button and adjudged Bopara out on the replay screen. It was a decision quickly rectified, but it left Bopara, and the crowd, bemused.

Let-off of the day
Mitchell Starc's delivery was hit straight to point, yet for some reason, England thought there was a single on. Cook eventually realised there wasn't, and got his bat back in the crease. The problem was that Bell was already at his end. But because the ball had hit the stumps, it evaded the player backing up, and England ended up running two from the overthrows after what should have been a certain run out. To make it worse, the original delivery was a no-ball. It was a lose, lose, lose situation for Australia.

Cheer of the day
Mitchell Johnson was recalled into the attack for the last over, his eighth. Perhaps George Bailey got his sums wrong. But the Edgbaston crowd loved it. It was like the ICC had let the fans vote on who they wanted to bowl. They cheered every step of his run up and hoped for something bad to happen. For the fourth ball, he slung down a predictable wide and overpitched Mitchell Johnson type delivery. When it was called a wide, the crowd had their biggest cheer of the day. Few cricketers can make so many happy through being so incompetent.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo, Jarrod Kimber is 50% of the Two Chucks, and the mind responsible for cricketwithballs.com

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Shanmugam on June 10, 2013, 5:42 GMT

    @darrenh, thanks for reminding us about SiJo in Brisbane 2002-2003. The Aussie crowd's behavior that day was despicable. SiJo, the fighter that he was, returned with a vengeance and tormented Australia in the 2005 Ashes. Unfortunately, injuries cut his career cruelly short. I for one genuinely believed that he would have been an important member of our attack even now had he stayed fit. He had the talent, the aggression, all the needed attributes for a fast bowler. Cannot forget his reverse swing in the 2005 Ashes especially his dismissal of Clarke in OT.

  • j on June 9, 2013, 21:14 GMT

    Awesome bowling from Anderson, all of England's seamers came to the party and absolutely dominated over the bat, and Anderson and Broad's legality with the new ball is well known. Shoddy sportsmanship from Wade, which just goes to show the gulf that always exists when these two teams play each other.

  • Darren on June 9, 2013, 11:31 GMT

    The England fans first took to Johnson after a wayward bowling spell at Lords 2009 when he went at over 6 rpo. Before the 2010/2011 ashes he made a public statement claiming he would target the England captain then bowled like a drain in 3 of the 4 tests he played (15 wickets at 36.93 - Finn took 14 wickets at 33.14 and was dropped after 3 tests). I agree that the Barmy Army's baiting of MJ is often over the top but when compared to aussie fans treatment of Simon Jones as he was stretchered off pitch (pelting him with beer cans and calling him a weak pommie so and so) it looks like gentle leg-pulling.I think MJ is a very talented cricketer and if he developed a Trott -like ability to concentrate solely on the job at hand or if like KP he used a crowds animosity to spur him on to greater heights, he would be a world class all-rounder. Until then opposition fans will bait him and laugh as his game falls apart.

  • andrews on June 9, 2013, 8:44 GMT

    Incompetent. Not Mitchell Johnson, but the two of you. Absolutely woeful. Totally out of line for a former world cricketer of the year. It was actually a very good final over.

  • Kamal on June 9, 2013, 7:29 GMT

    What is this buddy? he is not "incompetent". No.. never. He has done so much of his country. (205 wkts in 52 Test, and 188 ODI wickets)..he is a pride for his country. Being a writer you can't tag like this to a pride and a great player. He has done a very good job for his IPL Franchise , Mumbai Indians. ...I am his fan from India..

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2013, 6:25 GMT

    Even Mumbai Indians do not ask Mitchell Johnson to bowl the last over. (Incidentally, OZ should have allowed Mitchell to play wearing the Mumbai jersey. He would have done far better)

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2013, 3:03 GMT

    Australia is the most exiting team to watch.I love the way they chase the ball to the fence!!

  • TR on June 9, 2013, 2:41 GMT

    They changed the rules to make more runs come out of the bat within 50 overs. But not with Eng and Aus !!

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2013, 0:53 GMT

    Shane Warne kept wittering on about what a par score was in spite of 280 being the record run chase on that ground. I think his wig had slipped down over his eyes and was therefore blind to the solid English top-order batting that resulted in Bell getting Man of the Match.

  • Shanmugam on June 9, 2013, 0:18 GMT

    "Few cricketers can make so many happy through being so incompetent."

    Totally unnecessary comment Messrs Dobell and Kimber. Johnson may have bowled a few bad balls this game but incompetent, he is not. This man was instrumental in Aus. winning a test series against SA in SA after SA had beaten Aus in Aus and everyone expected SA to cruise through at home. He has had more than his share of bad days but he represents his country with pride. He cannot have come this far and had lot of success along the way if he was incompetent. I can understand fans taunting him but think this is too much coming from respectable writers like you and to be published in cricinfo. I kindly request you to edit/remove that line.

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