England v Australia, 1st Investec Test, Trent Bridge, 5th day July 14, 2013

Haddin epitomises Australia fight

The first Test ebbed and flowed right up until the moment of uncertainty surrounding Brad Haddin's dismissal before the waters finally closed over Australia
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Brad Haddin re-marked his guard like a man who had given the possibility of losing barely a nanosecond's thought. England's fielders swarmed around him, convinced of the edge that would deliver them victory. James Anderson was not so sure, having heard no sound. Behind Anderson, the umpire Aleem Dar was even less aware of the possibility of a nick, not for the first time in the match. Alastair Cook, Matt Prior and Anderson conferred, briskly but calmly, before deciding to review Dar's decision.

Offering them not the slightest bit of notice, Haddin strode down the wicket and conferred with Australia's last man, James Pattinson, ahead of the next ball he looked so certain would come. As England held their breath, Haddin and Pattinson began planning how to whittle those last few runs down. They also had the chance to ponder for a moment how they managed to get within 15 runs of an England team so few had expected them to seriously challenge. A match flashed past their eyes.

Trent Bridge had revealed its charms and dramas slowly. First impressions were seldom the same as final ones. Day one was frenetic but lacking in poise, nerves playing as great a part in proceedings as skills, tactics or conditions. Australia's first man through the wall on day one had not been Ashton Agar, a nervous debutant yet to become the popular phenomenon he is now. It was instead Peter Siddle, who confounded the small army of critics who had questioned his place. England's first blows were struck not by Anderson but Steven Finn, a hair's breadth away from a grand hat-trick with Michael Clarke as its apogee.

Pattinson started the match not as a nerveless tailender, but a decidedly keyed up fast bowler. He hurled down the first over of the Test match, a nervy bouncer to Cook followed up with a series of balls sprayed too wide to be of any danger to the batsman. Haddin made a similarly ginger start to his series, diving over a difficult leg-side chance offered from Pattinson's bowling and then having his defence punctured second ball by a ripping offbreak from Graeme Swann, who was never again quite as dangerous as he had seemed at that moment.

The disarming of Swann was perhaps chief among Agar's many achievements. Apart from setting records for No. 11 innings and partnerships, bringing a smile to cricket watchers the world over with his charismatic batting, and holding his own as a tidy left-arm spin bowler, Agar showed a confidence and assurance against Swann that can only improve Australia's chances of combating him for the rest of the series. The way he advanced to drive Swann on the second morning, lofting him imperiously towards the Trent Bridge Members Pavilion, was to be tellingly repeated by Pattinson as the target ticked closer on day five.

The confidence with which Pattinson and Haddin faced up to Swann, Broad and Finn left an enormous weight of pressure on Anderson. Throughout the match he responded stirringly to Cook's demands, extending his spells an extra over here or there, and coming back more frequently than either of his pace counterparts. Ultimately Anderson's tally for the match reached into a 56th over. Between them, Finn and Stuart Broad bowled 54.5. Anderson's pre-eminence as a fast-medium bowler in this series, and in the world, is unquestioned. But he is highly unlikely to be able to sustain the Trent Bridge effort for five Tests, let alone ten.

Something else that cannot be sustained, at least in Australian eyes, is the disparity in the two teams' use of the DRS. Another slightly misleading point for much of day one had been England's use of the system, notably a poor Finn review against his caught behind dismissal. The more lasting pattern of the match would be established late on the first evening, when Chris Rogers reviewed his lbw dismissal and found himself on the wrong end of a marginal umpire's call.

These would surface again and again to Australia's displeasure, though England were also to be humbugged by Jonathan Trott's lbw exit when bat appeared likely to have been involved. Broad's survival of a clear catch to slip was less the denial of sportsmanship than a reminder of flawed umpires, flawed Australian use of reviews and a flawed system.

Nothing, though, was quite so flawed as Australia's batting. The memorable tenth-wicket stands in both innings played a huge role in ensuring Clarke's team would stay close with England. They were in the same instant a reminder that this side has been essentially relying on freak batting events to keep them competitive for quite some time.

In 2011 and 2012 such happenings revolved around Clarke, who batted as if in a perpetual dream. This year too few of the runs have come from those men who answer to making them in their job descriptions. Clarke has said he does not care where the runs come from, so long as they arrive from somewhere. But no team can reasonably expect tail-end miracles of the kind produced by Siddle in Delhi, Mitchell Starc in Mohali and Agar here to carry them towards any kind of consistent success.

Haddin knew this as he stood side by side with Pattinson, refusing to believe the day was done. English hearts leapt briefly with joy when the replay screen appeared to show a speck of heat on Haddin's inside edge, then returned to a more laboured pulse as the third umpire Marais Erasmus cross-checked Hot Spot with the stump audio. Only three days before he had been oblivious to an inside edge by Trott.

Stern and confident, Haddin hung on to his thoughts of the next ball, the next run and the final victory, right until the moment Dar crossed himself and raised his finger. The younger Pattinson bowed his head, in frustration and defeat. But Haddin stared straight ahead, not willing to lose face. He kept his defiant posture on the walk off Trent Bridge, even if the removal of his helmet revealed a face lined with pain. However Haddin dealt with this defeat, he would not grant England the opportunity to see it. If his stance said anything, it was this: it isn't over.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Bogelking on July 15, 2013, 8:58 GMT

    It was a superb innings from Haddin. While wickets were falling on the other end- thanks to the bowling of Anderson rather than reckless batting- he was there stolid as a rock. The last wicket partnership between Haddin-Pattinson really tested the english bowling. Seriously it reminded us of the Edgbaston test where England had a close shave win of 2 runs. But whatever may come, the ashes have begun on a brilliant note, and we can certainly expect an even contest rather that a lop-sided one, which the viewers had predicted because of Australias recent bad performances. Haddin has been out for a while and he utilised it to work on his technique and come back strongly to the Australian fold now posing a danger for Wade.

  • amir_nirvana on July 15, 2013, 0:13 GMT

    It was exactly that, terrific courage shown by Haddin! You have got to love his spirit and attitude. That is the reason I look at test cricket, for those little moments when champions collide. Haddin refused to back down, Anderson strained every muscle. It was a terrific contest even if it was marred with controversy. The England team deserved a wake up call and Australia's top order need to contribute more. Overall I think this series is going to be too close to call.

  • H_Z_O on July 16, 2013, 11:28 GMT

    @Greatest_Game Think most Aussie fans acknowledge their batting isn't up to the standard it needs to be at. There's no doubt they have some talented batsmen but they've yet to string consistent performances as a unit. Hughes, let's not forget, is a guy who enjoyed a phenomenal debut series in South Africa. Smith looked like a much better player in India. Clarke's probably the one batsman in the world South Africa wouldn't mind having.

    Their bowling's pretty good though, as South Africa's stellar batting lineup will tell you. It's no Steyn, Morkel and Philander, but it's probably next in line. There's a lot of young guys there too, Pattinson and Starc both 23.

    @Jono Makim my gut tells me you won't win this series, although I don't think it'll be one-sided, and I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the series end in a draw. If you can sort a few issues out, though, the series down under should see you start as favourites.

  • H_Z_O on July 16, 2013, 11:19 GMT

    @CalmIndiaFan they just bowled out England twice in a Test match on a graveyard of a pitch. Agar had a cut on his spinning finger, according to Lehmann he was told to bowl with more overspin than sidespin while it heals, but he can spin it sideways as well as get that loop and bounce. Wouldn't write him off as a bowler just yet.

    Might be a case for bringing in Lyon to supplement him, especially if the weather's going to stay this dry. Lords is usually a lovely batting surface and if it stays sunny, there's every chance Watson, Rogers, Hughes, Clarke, Smith and Haddin could get some big runs. Maybe dropping Cowan for Lyon and trying to strike an immediate counter-punch by going in with a five-man attack at Lord's is the way to go?

    Otherwise with Warner gone to South Africa, Khawaja's got to come in for Cowan. He looked all at sea, not for the lack of runs, but the way he got out.

  • on July 16, 2013, 9:35 GMT

    @Rooboy, I agree up until your last sentence. Aus are unearthing plenty of good young cricketers, of that there is no doubt. I think they may be a little short of winning back the urn in the near term though. It's a grand work in progress but our batsmen still aren't putting enough pressure on with bulk of runs and it doesn't really look for now as though that will change, but I do have some hope in Rogers, short term and more so in Hughes and Smith in the medium term. Still a couple of gaps to fill in though. Maybe blokes like Burns and Maddinson can force their way in and produce sometime soon, Khawaja I really don't know what to think.

  • jmcilhinney on July 16, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    @IndianInnerEdge on (July 15, 2013, 13:44 GMT), I think you'll find that quite a lot of tail-enders try very hard not to give up their wicket. It's just that McGrath whinged about getting out a lot more than most others.

  • on July 16, 2013, 5:31 GMT

    @ Gautam N. Shenoy ..... all I can say is "WOW!!!" For almost 4-years Australia has had literally no stable to order. After continual top order collapses, lower order players have continually been called on to win the game, save the game or save Australia from complete embarrassment. There are many examples of Haddin efforts -

    2013 3rd Test Aust vs India : 2 brave efforts after top order collapses. 2011 1st Test Aust vs NZ : Australia is 5/237 trailing NZ by 58 runs Haddin & MC share a 108run p/ship to take Australia to a winning position. 2011 2nd Test Aust vs SA : Australia is 5/165 and combines with MH (50) then MJ (72) to win test. 2010 Ashes Series : In a series remembered for top order collapses 1st Test - P/ship with MH takes Aust from 5/143 to 6/450 2nd Test - Aust were 3/2. At 5/156 BH holds up tail to score 245. 3rd Test - P/ship with MH & MJ take Aust from 5/69 to 7/189 Aust wins Test. 4th Test & 5th Test - Score 55* and 30 trying to stave off inning defeats

  • Greatest_Game on July 15, 2013, 23:59 GMT

    @ Rooboy. You seem convinced Aus is an "up and coming side." Exactly when is the up, or the coming, going to begin? In their last series, Aus did not manage a single win against India or SA. (Close, almost, nearly…don't start with that. A win is a win, not an almost. No win is no win. A series loss is a loss.)

    Aus have been down, & going, against the top ranked teams, but they were even spanked in their last test against NZ! Their top scorers in their last 3 tests were Starc, Siddle and a 19 year old debutant. Their batsmen can't even find the mark in a dark nightclub!

    It is not only the test team. Aus could not scrape up a win in the Champions trophy. India took them down for 65 in a warmup! (Better than 47 all out, but still …) Lucky Bangladesh weren't in their group!

    Please don't get confused - I'm not writing this because I'm an upset Pom. I'm not upset, or a Pom. I'm actually having a good laugh …up and coming … yeah right!

  • on July 15, 2013, 14:51 GMT

    Well fought Australia. I thought the Haddin wicket was out in real time itself w/o the benefit of replays/DRS. There was a clear sound/nick and bat was nowhere close to pad. Tough on Aus as i was hoping that the last wicket would get them through. They played Swann very well, better than the top half played him at least. Anderson is really something.. menacing all the time, bowled really well in India also.

  • on July 15, 2013, 14:24 GMT

    In all my years of watching cricket, this is the first time EVER that Haddin has shown a semblance of a fight and the will to play a responsible innings. This is not the Haddin we know. He is the one who gets frustrated by a few dot balls and gets out trying to loft the bowlers in almost every pressure situation. I am really surprised. And, he is still to play a match winning (test) knock for Australia. Still a long way to go before he can be considered a reasonable wicketkeeper batsman in tests.

  • Bogelking on July 15, 2013, 8:58 GMT

    It was a superb innings from Haddin. While wickets were falling on the other end- thanks to the bowling of Anderson rather than reckless batting- he was there stolid as a rock. The last wicket partnership between Haddin-Pattinson really tested the english bowling. Seriously it reminded us of the Edgbaston test where England had a close shave win of 2 runs. But whatever may come, the ashes have begun on a brilliant note, and we can certainly expect an even contest rather that a lop-sided one, which the viewers had predicted because of Australias recent bad performances. Haddin has been out for a while and he utilised it to work on his technique and come back strongly to the Australian fold now posing a danger for Wade.

  • amir_nirvana on July 15, 2013, 0:13 GMT

    It was exactly that, terrific courage shown by Haddin! You have got to love his spirit and attitude. That is the reason I look at test cricket, for those little moments when champions collide. Haddin refused to back down, Anderson strained every muscle. It was a terrific contest even if it was marred with controversy. The England team deserved a wake up call and Australia's top order need to contribute more. Overall I think this series is going to be too close to call.

  • H_Z_O on July 16, 2013, 11:28 GMT

    @Greatest_Game Think most Aussie fans acknowledge their batting isn't up to the standard it needs to be at. There's no doubt they have some talented batsmen but they've yet to string consistent performances as a unit. Hughes, let's not forget, is a guy who enjoyed a phenomenal debut series in South Africa. Smith looked like a much better player in India. Clarke's probably the one batsman in the world South Africa wouldn't mind having.

    Their bowling's pretty good though, as South Africa's stellar batting lineup will tell you. It's no Steyn, Morkel and Philander, but it's probably next in line. There's a lot of young guys there too, Pattinson and Starc both 23.

    @Jono Makim my gut tells me you won't win this series, although I don't think it'll be one-sided, and I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the series end in a draw. If you can sort a few issues out, though, the series down under should see you start as favourites.

  • H_Z_O on July 16, 2013, 11:19 GMT

    @CalmIndiaFan they just bowled out England twice in a Test match on a graveyard of a pitch. Agar had a cut on his spinning finger, according to Lehmann he was told to bowl with more overspin than sidespin while it heals, but he can spin it sideways as well as get that loop and bounce. Wouldn't write him off as a bowler just yet.

    Might be a case for bringing in Lyon to supplement him, especially if the weather's going to stay this dry. Lords is usually a lovely batting surface and if it stays sunny, there's every chance Watson, Rogers, Hughes, Clarke, Smith and Haddin could get some big runs. Maybe dropping Cowan for Lyon and trying to strike an immediate counter-punch by going in with a five-man attack at Lord's is the way to go?

    Otherwise with Warner gone to South Africa, Khawaja's got to come in for Cowan. He looked all at sea, not for the lack of runs, but the way he got out.

  • on July 16, 2013, 9:35 GMT

    @Rooboy, I agree up until your last sentence. Aus are unearthing plenty of good young cricketers, of that there is no doubt. I think they may be a little short of winning back the urn in the near term though. It's a grand work in progress but our batsmen still aren't putting enough pressure on with bulk of runs and it doesn't really look for now as though that will change, but I do have some hope in Rogers, short term and more so in Hughes and Smith in the medium term. Still a couple of gaps to fill in though. Maybe blokes like Burns and Maddinson can force their way in and produce sometime soon, Khawaja I really don't know what to think.

  • jmcilhinney on July 16, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    @IndianInnerEdge on (July 15, 2013, 13:44 GMT), I think you'll find that quite a lot of tail-enders try very hard not to give up their wicket. It's just that McGrath whinged about getting out a lot more than most others.

  • on July 16, 2013, 5:31 GMT

    @ Gautam N. Shenoy ..... all I can say is "WOW!!!" For almost 4-years Australia has had literally no stable to order. After continual top order collapses, lower order players have continually been called on to win the game, save the game or save Australia from complete embarrassment. There are many examples of Haddin efforts -

    2013 3rd Test Aust vs India : 2 brave efforts after top order collapses. 2011 1st Test Aust vs NZ : Australia is 5/237 trailing NZ by 58 runs Haddin & MC share a 108run p/ship to take Australia to a winning position. 2011 2nd Test Aust vs SA : Australia is 5/165 and combines with MH (50) then MJ (72) to win test. 2010 Ashes Series : In a series remembered for top order collapses 1st Test - P/ship with MH takes Aust from 5/143 to 6/450 2nd Test - Aust were 3/2. At 5/156 BH holds up tail to score 245. 3rd Test - P/ship with MH & MJ take Aust from 5/69 to 7/189 Aust wins Test. 4th Test & 5th Test - Score 55* and 30 trying to stave off inning defeats

  • Greatest_Game on July 15, 2013, 23:59 GMT

    @ Rooboy. You seem convinced Aus is an "up and coming side." Exactly when is the up, or the coming, going to begin? In their last series, Aus did not manage a single win against India or SA. (Close, almost, nearly…don't start with that. A win is a win, not an almost. No win is no win. A series loss is a loss.)

    Aus have been down, & going, against the top ranked teams, but they were even spanked in their last test against NZ! Their top scorers in their last 3 tests were Starc, Siddle and a 19 year old debutant. Their batsmen can't even find the mark in a dark nightclub!

    It is not only the test team. Aus could not scrape up a win in the Champions trophy. India took them down for 65 in a warmup! (Better than 47 all out, but still …) Lucky Bangladesh weren't in their group!

    Please don't get confused - I'm not writing this because I'm an upset Pom. I'm not upset, or a Pom. I'm actually having a good laugh …up and coming … yeah right!

  • on July 15, 2013, 14:51 GMT

    Well fought Australia. I thought the Haddin wicket was out in real time itself w/o the benefit of replays/DRS. There was a clear sound/nick and bat was nowhere close to pad. Tough on Aus as i was hoping that the last wicket would get them through. They played Swann very well, better than the top half played him at least. Anderson is really something.. menacing all the time, bowled really well in India also.

  • on July 15, 2013, 14:24 GMT

    In all my years of watching cricket, this is the first time EVER that Haddin has shown a semblance of a fight and the will to play a responsible innings. This is not the Haddin we know. He is the one who gets frustrated by a few dot balls and gets out trying to loft the bowlers in almost every pressure situation. I am really surprised. And, he is still to play a match winning (test) knock for Australia. Still a long way to go before he can be considered a reasonable wicketkeeper batsman in tests.

  • mk4444 on July 15, 2013, 14:20 GMT

    "eng team are the world beaters the English press have pretended they are"

    No they haven't. Surely you Aussies are smart enough (apparently not) to understand that the 10-0 stuff is a wind up? It's purely and simply a reaction to all the years of the McGrath 5-0 predictions. That's it. No-one believes it but we know it gets you all fulminating so we do it:-) It's no good getting all petulant and precious now when you are getting a taste of your own medicine. Grow up.

    The reason England are perceived to be favourites for this series is that they have been a better team for the last few years against both Oz and most other teams and have backed that up with results, not predictions. How many on the trot have Oz lost now?

  • IndianInnerEdge on July 15, 2013, 13:44 GMT

    The biggest praise u can give this Aus team or som of the OZ teams of the most recent past was that every one remembers each tme they were defeated !That proud record was due to the spirit of fighters like Haddin. Even though glenn Mcg was never a great batsmen, his attitude with bat in hand was exemplary and he tried his damnest hardest for the bowler to earn his wicket. With such spirits, this augurs well for the rest of the series...this test match was from test match nirvana.....Bring on Lords...!

  • Rooboy on July 15, 2013, 13:38 GMT

    'They also had the chance to ponder for a moment how they managed to get within 15 runs of an England team so few had expected them to seriously challenge.' ... speak for yourself. I think there's a lot more than 'so few' who fully expect Aus to challenge england, having not bought into the hype that this average eng team are the world beaters the English press have pretended they are, nor that this average Aus side are one of the worst ever. Seriously ... there are even fools in the english media predicting 10-0 results and lots of fans apparently buying into that idiocy too! An up and coming Aus side with their backs to the wall having been belted by the media 'experts', vs a massively overrated eng team who rely on one bowler and who are so cocky they think they just need to turn up. Pretty clear who will be holding the Urn 12 months from now.

  • 200ondebut on July 15, 2013, 13:34 GMT

    My worry is that England seem to lose their heads when faced with a last wicket partnership. Out of the window goes the line and lengths that had got them into that position - and instead they bowl a load of pies. Finn seemed the prime victim of the last wicket lobotomy. 40% - yes thats correct - 40% of Australias runs were scored from the last wicket. 226 more than Englands tally of 2. It was these two partnerships that made this a close contest. If England get this issue sorted - well we all know what will happen.

  • mikkkk on July 15, 2013, 13:29 GMT

    @dmat

    Swann has never been successful at Trent Bridge even though it's his home ground. I think Aus have far more to worry about with their wayward inconsistent attack. When England were determined to stick in, as they did in the second inns the Aus bowlers had little to offer. Remember, after the first innings Aus had a decent lead to bowl at. After the Trott and Root were given out they had a massive advantage but their bowlers couldn't produce. Talking up is a lot easier than producing thats why Aussies do lots of the former and less of the latter.

  • Montague_Withnail on July 15, 2013, 12:45 GMT

    I don't agree with Dan's analysis of Haddin's reaction to his edge. At the time I had no idea if it was out or not - until he took his helmet off - then I was sure. It was written ALL over his face. Watching the replay as well, you can tell he knew he'd hit it - the way he instantly looked back to see if the catch had been taken. Afterwards there was a great show of looking confused to tell us all that he was ever so surprised and really had no idea at all, I can't blame him for that, no one likes to lose face.

    Of course, this doesn't matter. There's not a cricketer in the world that I would expect to walk under those circumstances. Not Gilchrist himself, and certainly no player I've ever seen for England. No complaints about Haddin not walking at all, BUT egg on the faces of those Aussies fans and journos complaining about Broad not walking. Using DRS is a genuine cricket skill - and like batting and bowling, England are better at it than Australia - that is their problem not ours.

  • dmat on July 15, 2013, 12:29 GMT

    Great test match and I'm looking forward to the rest of the series. However, I've always been concerned that the toss of a coin can have so much impact on a game and a series. I remember someone (I think it was I Chappell) suggesting that the visiting team should choose to bat or bowl in the first test then alternate from there. Seems a fairer way to me. Would be sad to see a team win 5 tosses, bat first and scrape home each game after getting the best of the conditions. Time for a re think on this?

  • dmat on July 15, 2013, 12:13 GMT

    Another great article Dan. England deserved their win but surely must be worried about their bowling. There has been much said about Finn but he is their 3rd quick and a wicket taker who leaks runs - fair enough if the other 3 bowlers are on song. Broad was not 100% but is a class player. For me Swann is the problem. This wicket was made for him and he only took 4/165. Strangely, I believe australia's batting showed something. Watson and Rogers are the right combination to open. Cowan was unwell in the first innings and overly nervous in the second but I expect him to improve considerably. Clark will score runs, both Smith and Hughes got 50's and Siddle, Pattinson and Agar did their job with the bat and ball. Aus will take great heart from this game and realise that this side is capable of beating England and will do so during this series. Before the first ball, I tipped 3-0, I'm thinking it will be much closer now and wouldn't be surprised to see it 2-2.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on July 15, 2013, 12:04 GMT

    @wellrounded87 (post on July 15, 2013, 10:33 GMT): There was a clear (albeit small) mark on hot spot, and Haddin's bat was miles away from his pad. If bat didn't hit pad, then ball must have hit bat, no?

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on July 15, 2013, 11:54 GMT

    Yeah and just think how so many Aus. fans like Mitty2 would have preferred Wade. Unbelievable! Thank heavens the selectors made the right choice.

  • on July 15, 2013, 11:35 GMT

    @wellrounded87- What do you mean "no hot spot"? Go back and look at the footage and have another crack at that statement.

  • concerned_cricketer on July 15, 2013, 11:24 GMT

    To me the australian bowling outfit, as a whole pack, looks better more comfortable and likely to take regular wickets than England's as a whole. Thank goodness for Jimmy's genius. England have to get their bowling act together either through Bresnan or call up Tremlett or someone.

  • wellrounded87 on July 15, 2013, 10:33 GMT

    I have to say i don't think Australia deserved to win. Our batting was deplorable. Both innings we were relying on the tail to pull us out of trouble, even despite the great start to the second innings.

    But man England didn't really earn the win either. Their bowling was wayward and at times tactically baffling particularly against Agar/Hughes in the first innings also their batting was scratchy. Bell's century was the difference in the two teams in the first test. That last wicket was a joke. Last i checked it required conclusive evidence to overturn the on field decision. Since when is a sound, no deviation on the ball and no hot spot conclusive evidence?

  • Jo21 on July 15, 2013, 10:30 GMT

    The closest Australia will come to winning an Ashes Test for several years to come! [I am an Australia supporter :-) ]

  • on July 15, 2013, 10:18 GMT

    It was Agar and Philips in the first outing and Haddin and Pattinson in the second essay who showed that this English attack can be subdued. Australia has it in them to put it acoss a nervous English side. This English side can't flatten opposition and now that Australia has sensed this they will fight back. Watson , Clarke and Smith and Cowan need to bat with purpose, this England side will wilt under pressure. Their bowling resources are thin

  • _Australian_ on July 15, 2013, 10:01 GMT

    Posted by Eddie Alaszewski on (July 15, 2013, 9:32 GMT). How do you think Australia played out of their skins? We bowled a lot of loose stuff in the first innings and the majority batted poorly. Both teams did not play as well as they would have liked I am sure, but it was a great game. As for Botham's prediction the more this guy opens his mouth, the more his good career as a cricker get's tarnished.

  • on July 15, 2013, 9:47 GMT

    Great fight shown by Australia, but they had to break records to even keep up. England on the other hand, haven't even reached 2nd gear. I think Strauss was right, this was the only test that Australia would have been able to win. It is all down hill for the baggy green from here.

  • on July 15, 2013, 9:43 GMT

    @__PK- "Bell's luck century"? Are you for real? How is batting for 6 hours "lucky"? If Bell's innings was "lucky" then Agar's 98 was positively miraculous. Bell was the finest batsman on display. Likewise his test average of 46 must be "lucky".

  • Roger_Dodge on July 15, 2013, 9:42 GMT

    I thought Haddin should have walked!

  • on July 15, 2013, 9:32 GMT

    Basically Australia played out of their skins and lost, England were ordinary and won. Sadly Botham's 10-0 looks a good bet from here.

  • AussieSam on July 15, 2013, 9:14 GMT

    Such a fascinating start to the series. One feature of the whole test was players who people doubted proving their worth.

    I was surprised about how many people doubt Siddle with how well he has bowled in the last few years, he not only got us into the match he got us into the series by bowling out England for a lot less than anyone expected they'd make.

    Haddin's place was actually maybe a little bit at risk until he made that brilliant innings at the end, he'll need to address the issues he had keeping but it was a tough pitch for keepers.

    Hughes showed he won't be Swann's bunny in the first innings and, like Steve Smith, showed he might be very useful in the middle order. Watson showed he can play Warner's role by putting pressure on England in the 4th innings, he obviously needs hundreds to really prove it though and I have a feeling he'll get at least one in the series.

    For England, Bell showed again he is a class player and Root showed he can handle the pressure at the top.

  • on July 15, 2013, 9:05 GMT

    Posted by Venkat Sraman on (July 15,2013) Australians are normally great fighters.They used to fight till the last.They fought well in the first test match against England in the Ashes series.It was a closely contested test match which ultimately England won by 14 runs on 14th July,2013.

  • anver777 on July 15, 2013, 8:38 GMT

    Hard Luck Haddin !!! what an end to this gutsy innings !!!! Aus almost got there...

  • on July 15, 2013, 8:34 GMT

    For someone who has been a perennial Aussie-basher, I can't believe that I am writing this-but, in all fairness & honestly, I loved the way in which the Aussies put up such a dogged fight. With circumstances, DRS, and what not loaded against them, the Australians punched much above their weight and were equal to whatever England had to throw at them. Overall, this was a Test Match of the highest quality & pedigree-akin to a boxing match where the winner is undecided till the final whistle by the referee. Excellent job done by Haddin, Agar, Pattinson and co for taking the fight to the English camp-This isn't over, as Daniel has remarked, and am keenly looking forward to another photo-finish at Lord's. Congratulations to England, Commiserations to Australia! Chin up, mates, for Thursday is a new day and the start of a new battle.

  • on July 15, 2013, 8:28 GMT

    The biggest umpiring error was the (un) stumping of Agar which cost England around 160 runs and a easy win within 3 days

  • CalmIndiaFan on July 15, 2013, 8:27 GMT

    Congratulations to England on a fantastic win; Terrific play by Australia despite punch-gate and coach issues. The first match is always very difficult for a visiting team to adjust and sets the tone for the series. We have a cracker of a series ahead!

    A lot of people wrote that Aussie batting is the weak link but I feel its the other way around. Australia does not seem to have the attack to bowl out Eng twice in a test match in every match. Except Siddle, the attack looks inexperienced. Agar might posses batting skills for lower order but he does not look like a class spinner to trouble the likes of Trott, Bell and KP. However, Agar (and Haddin) landed a major psychological blow to Swann (and Eng) by tackling him easily. The Aussies can now believe that they can handle Swann and will give them immense confidence.

    Bring on the Lords...

  • reddawn1975 on July 15, 2013, 8:20 GMT

    Boy i would really love to see come into this side Shawn Marsh for Rogers i know he scored a 50 but man Shawn Marsh is a very good player he has served his time for naughty problems second Usman Khawaja for Ed Cowan poor old Ed really isnt that good a player at this level harness the skill of Khawaja he's ready go and 3rd Steve Smith move over and get a guy that really should be there Mitch Johnson the guy had a good Australian summer bowled well in India and intimidated the opposition he just bowls nasty and was killing it in the IPL dont break his confidence and one other for stable mid order and to deal with Swan George Bailey he's in very very good form

  • Bubba2008 on July 15, 2013, 8:14 GMT

    Haddin played extremely well either way. To begin an innings in the situation his teammates had left behind would have been extremely daunting for any player. Haddin handled the pressure with class and determination, using his considerable experience to nullify the mental edge England held over Australia at that point.

    Even after his dismissal, the composure he showed demonstrated a massive level of self-control, particularly after such a devastating defeat. That said, it shouldn't have been left to the last four batsmen to chase a large total against the second best paceman and best spinner in world cricket. Watson needs to begin building on his starts, and convert his workable average into one that reflects the quality he possesses. Rogers has shown potential but needs to move quickly before the selectors decide he's too old. And Cowan? I'm sorry. A number three he isn't. Put him in the middle order or drop him, but do not put him in the spot reserved for the side's best.

  • on July 15, 2013, 7:29 GMT

    Watson, Rogers, Hughes, Smith, Clarke, Warner, Haddin, Agar, Pattinson, Siddle, Bird. Im moving Clarke back to 5 where he has had so much success, for some reason he bats so much better at 5 then 4. Smith moves up to 4 and I only see Khawaja coming in for him if he fails continuously, I think warner can cause England some damage at no. 6. opening partnership is the best we have had since Watson and Katich. I think Bird will have a lot more success in England then Starc. infact I would have had bird in the first test instead of siddle but he just got 5 for. so cant drop him.

  • on July 15, 2013, 6:16 GMT

    @Mitty2, I don't think you could say for a minute that Patto underperformed. He busted his gut and did it with plenty of skill and pace and was still there at the very end, not out with the bat. He is a tremendous young cricketer and bloke too.

    Clarke was a little unlucky, he got two very good deliveries in this match.

    Cowan, yes, not quite up to scratch, it has to be agreed. I think he has a confused approach, he is a grafter trying to play an attacking brand of cricket.

    I hope thursday sees the sun out and the aussies winning the toss and having a bat. Then we'll see just how evenly matched these teams are.

  • on July 15, 2013, 6:09 GMT

    Superb Test Cricket battle from both teams, if some reviews not going against Australia, i sure that they may be win this test but this match give them much needed confidence for remaining series, Ashton Agar is like breath of Fresh Air, in win heart with his lovely smiles, i think a new star is already born in Australian team great fightback from Aussies, hope they come hard in next match, Clarke must make runs to give chance to his bowlers.

  • v_singh on July 15, 2013, 5:53 GMT

    coming from a neutral fan (Indian).. @ landl47 : Aussies and English are evenly matched, contrary to what you have suggested. England too got runs aka bowling all rounder (Broad - and if he had walked, Aussies would have won) and where Aussies lack is their batting, esp. in Cowan. Hope to see Warner back in the team (replacing Cowan); Rogers looked decent in English conditions, Watson is getting some runs and Clarke needs to rediscover the form when he kept on scoring tons in Australia. Aussie team : Rogers, Watson, Hughes, Smith, Clarke, Warner, Haddin, Agar, Pattinson, Starc, Siddle.

  • landl47 on July 15, 2013, 5:01 GMT

    The Aussies played hard, as I expected they would, but suggestions that these teams are closely matched wasn't borne out by this test. This was the highest score by a #11 and the biggest aggregate of runs for the 10th wicket in any of the 2090 tests played in almost 140 years since test cricket began. Agar and Pattinson played brilliantly and are clearly better than #11 bats, but Australia can't expect the last wicket to produce 228 runs in every test. Without those 10th wicket runs, England would have completely dominated this match.

    It was a thrilling game and I was (almost) disappointed Australia didn't pull off the win, but England will be the happier of the two sides about their overall level of performance.

  • Mitty2 on July 15, 2013, 4:58 GMT

    Agree @discobob, on all available evidence, the Trott decision was out

  • No_1_again on July 15, 2013, 4:56 GMT

    Australians need good top three to ware down Anderson because they (ENG)totally relied on him. 11th wicket partnership shined when he was relieved from bowling. I wonder if the batsmen were given the opportunity to extend by 1/2 into the lunch, what would have happened to the result. IMO Khawaja in and Cowen out Hughes @4 and Clarke @5. Bowlers did OK, took 20 wickets under 21/2 days.

  • TheBigBoodha on July 15, 2013, 4:44 GMT

    Plenty of positives here with batting, despite a couple of collapses. I think Australia will take a lot out of this test in batting terms. Just about everyone looks to be on the verge of a big score, hitting the ball well. I really do think England were very lucky here. How many hairline decisions went their way? And so many of them game changing? I really do think the batting has the potential to really blossom this tour, and I can see Hughes, Smith and Watson really coming on. It appears England are going to put down dry, flat tracks, so the top order should be able to flourish. England are pinning their hopes in Swann on deteriorating decks, while hoping Anderson can get life out of the new ball. It's quite a risk. It came very close to backfiring in this first test, and if not for the fortunate LBW decision against Watson, they would almost certainly have lost big time.

  • skilebow on July 15, 2013, 4:41 GMT

    I disagree with you about Haddin. You are romanticising it. By the look on Haddin's face he knew he had nicked it and was saying to Pattinson we might get away with this one

  • HowdyRowdy on July 15, 2013, 4:35 GMT

    Firstly, what a brilliant game of Test cricket. My entire family was up watching the match, so at least we were able to mourn together.

    I agree that the top order batting is where the major renovations are required. The Aussie bowling is, and will be, competitive. Having said that, Pattinson and Stark need to be more consistent and to build pressure by bowling in good areas for over after over.

    With the batting, Watson and Rogers look like a technically sound and complementary pair of openers. I reckon that the obvious change is one of Warner/Khawaja for Cowan. Both could come in if Smith fails regularly.

    Unfortunately, Australia is going through the pain of trying to sort out its best batting lineup during a very important Test series. This is the result of the NSP's prolonged ineptness and indecision.

  • CustomKid on July 15, 2013, 4:21 GMT

    Nice one Dan. Pretty spot on and I was pretty gutted to lose such a close on. That said it was out and that is what DRS is for.

    I'm concerned on Clarkes call of I don't care where the runs come from. We need someone in the top 6 to turn a start in to a 100 period. If and it is a massive IF the top 3 can and ultimately the top 6 can negate anderson they're in with a chance.

    Broad is great on his day but very inconsistent. Swan is way over rated, ave of 40 against AU and 38 v SAF IND 32 which is a pass. Agar treated him like it was casual Sunday afternoon back yard game in both innings.

    Rest assured if the conditions suit bowlers we've got the fire power to match England. It all comes down to the top 6 and unfortunately we're out of our depth on this front.

    Great test bring on Lords.

  • harshthakor on July 15, 2013, 4:21 GMT

    Australia gained a moral victory in this test match fighting back with fierce determination at every juncture.It was fitting that Haddin and Pattinson almost turned certain defeat into an improbable victory.It was a true reflection on the fighting spirit of the Aussies who resembled a military batallion almost triumphing against all odds.I don't remember a test match where the same team has produced classic last wicket stands in both innings.

    Above all the game was a victory for test cricket itself containing the intensity and uncertainty of a Hollywood thriller.One of the bets fought Ashes tests of all time.

  • Mitty2 on July 15, 2013, 3:53 GMT

    Brettig, your writing was so (rightly) critical of Australia during the Indian series, homeworkgate and pretty much everything up to Arthur's sacking; and now it has changed to positivity! Look what performance does! And yes, it was performance, onlyCowan/Clarke and maybe Pattinson (he was very unlucky) can say they under performed - although 'under performed' would be putting it nicely to Eddy.

    Hughes' innings was career defining; Smith's to a lower degree, but he defied the perennial critics (of which were formulated from playing against Eng); Watson/Rogers showed potential, although they both disappointingly threw away their wickets; the bowlers were superb with their plans and exception, but were incredibly unlucky in the second half of Eng's second innings; the lower order contributed more than 'useful innings' and of course: Ashton Agar.

    We fought with grit, which was most important. We lost the crucial sessions (expected) but lots of positives. Cowan out, Bird in, Clarke to 5.

  • thelapal on July 15, 2013, 3:51 GMT

    Danger signs for Australia for rest of the series ,England are confident by winning the first test. Batting worries continue for australia but the good thing for them is now they can even rely on their no.11 batsmen that will take off lot of pressure on their top order.England will try to explode the weakness of Phil huges facing spin bowling.old trafford and oval are tracks that will suit for spin bowlers. If England finds a track that spins during this series they will surely have monty panesar and well that can conclude who will be winner of this series. There are chances of Tim Bresnan playing in 11 in rest of the series after oval test if we same level of performance from finn and broad.

  • Samdanh on July 15, 2013, 3:44 GMT

    Thanks to Aleem Dar, who seemed to have slept while standing at the most crucial moment for Australia. England won, else, Aus would have won well before lunch. Credit to Australia for having carried themselves graciously, though it is a fact they were done by this major blunder by Aleem Dar. Also, ICC should revise DRS to declare batsmen out when hawk eye indicates ball clipping bails or stumps even marginally. Else, luck or ill luck with marginal decisions, may continue to impact teams. Eng team, please do not forget to thank Aleem Dar, even as you commend great performances from Bell and Anderson

  • disco_bob on July 15, 2013, 3:34 GMT

    "... when bat appeared likely to have been involved..." How does not seeing the full on side hotspot view and there being no sound (according to Erasmus who was asked by Dar) make it "likely" that bat was involved? Not to mention the foreshortened side on hotspot also showing no bat. If anything it is more likely that no bat was involved. No evidence at all can not make it more likely that something happened rather than not.

  • on July 15, 2013, 3:30 GMT

    Comin Hadds....you are a hero!!!!

  • disco_bob on July 15, 2013, 3:29 GMT

    Each of the four innings in this match contained a failed hat trick ball. Symbolic of the evenness of the competition.

  • Natx on July 15, 2013, 3:17 GMT

    Good stuff from Haddin to show what Aussies are made of. There is nothing wrong in going down hard and the whole team can take heart from this effort. Some poor selections cost the team the match - without going into umpiring stuff. Cowan is out of place and wonder how he is still in the team. Starc needs a break for a match to understand his issues. Bring in Kawaja and Faulkner in their places for a balance and the team can give a better fight at Lords. Also not a bad idea to have steve smith bowl a few overs (though he can throw few pies) in each innings after 2 or 3 down, given the extraordinary record of English batters against leg spin bowling.

  • Ozcricketwriter on July 15, 2013, 2:10 GMT

    There was no certainty that he hit it. Benefit of the doubt is supposed to go to the batsmen when unsure. It certainly looked less than certain to me. That made 8 blunders for the match for the umpires - 5 against Australia and 3 against England. This one, of course, is the most telling, because it ultimately decided the match. Brad Haddin, who tried so hard to give his wicket away, being dropped twice, having a missed run out and at least once almost dragging the ball back on to his stumps, was ultimately out not by a player but by the umpire. That pretty much sums up the game really. At least the umpiring didn't favour one team over the other but oh what bad umpiring. DRS clearly isn't fixing umpiring blunders, and "umpire's call" has a lot to do with that. Benefit of the doubt needs to go to the batsman, not the umpires.

  • Beertjie on July 15, 2013, 1:34 GMT

    Wonderful description! Haddin ought to have been the hero, but well done Anderson. Agree, @Rodell Julien on (July 14, 2013, 20:39 GMT), Khawaja at #3 may help the necessary stability, but probably Warner (eventually) at this spot.

  • straightbreakbowler6 on July 15, 2013, 1:13 GMT

    What an epic to start the series. Both teams fighting it out to the last. Some decisions may tarnish some aspects of the match but the real winner is test cricket. With the worlds eyes on this contest Test cricket is truely alive!!!

  • __PK on July 15, 2013, 0:46 GMT

    The most flawed use of the DRS was the final one. Noone in the English team thought Haddin had nicked it, but they had two reviews left and they were desperate to save the game, so they thought "Why not? Maybe the DRS will make another mistake and give the batsman out." Is this really the sort of dishonest behaviour we want from the use of the DRS? It's EXACTLY as bad as appealing for a catch when you know the batsman's missed it. Broad got the benefit of Haddin's doubt. And if you're talking about freak batting efforts, where would England have been without Bell's lucky century?

  • Chris_P on July 15, 2013, 0:14 GMT

    Haddin's performance was full of courage. He always takes the fight to the opposition, it may not always work, but the bowlers know they have to earn his wicket. He is there for the calming influence & responsibility of the team, a good option for Clarke to have.

  • on July 14, 2013, 21:57 GMT

    I think Australia need to make two changes for the next test match. cowan and starc out khawaja and bird in

    rogers Watson hughes Clarke khawaja smith haddin agar siddle pattinson bird.

  • on July 14, 2013, 21:41 GMT

    As the Australian tail almost always wags, why don't they think about reversing the batting order...in all probability watto, cowan, clarke, hughes might start firing as tail-enders...

  • on July 14, 2013, 20:39 GMT

    Beautiful writing. Looking forward to the rest of the Ashes. Such drama was in this first test! Australia has to become more competitive at the top of the order! Well done to England. It was a well-fought match.

  • on July 14, 2013, 20:39 GMT

    Beautiful writing. Looking forward to the rest of the Ashes. Such drama was in this first test! Australia has to become more competitive at the top of the order! Well done to England. It was a well-fought match.

  • on July 14, 2013, 21:41 GMT

    As the Australian tail almost always wags, why don't they think about reversing the batting order...in all probability watto, cowan, clarke, hughes might start firing as tail-enders...

  • on July 14, 2013, 21:57 GMT

    I think Australia need to make two changes for the next test match. cowan and starc out khawaja and bird in

    rogers Watson hughes Clarke khawaja smith haddin agar siddle pattinson bird.

  • Chris_P on July 15, 2013, 0:14 GMT

    Haddin's performance was full of courage. He always takes the fight to the opposition, it may not always work, but the bowlers know they have to earn his wicket. He is there for the calming influence & responsibility of the team, a good option for Clarke to have.

  • __PK on July 15, 2013, 0:46 GMT

    The most flawed use of the DRS was the final one. Noone in the English team thought Haddin had nicked it, but they had two reviews left and they were desperate to save the game, so they thought "Why not? Maybe the DRS will make another mistake and give the batsman out." Is this really the sort of dishonest behaviour we want from the use of the DRS? It's EXACTLY as bad as appealing for a catch when you know the batsman's missed it. Broad got the benefit of Haddin's doubt. And if you're talking about freak batting efforts, where would England have been without Bell's lucky century?

  • straightbreakbowler6 on July 15, 2013, 1:13 GMT

    What an epic to start the series. Both teams fighting it out to the last. Some decisions may tarnish some aspects of the match but the real winner is test cricket. With the worlds eyes on this contest Test cricket is truely alive!!!

  • Beertjie on July 15, 2013, 1:34 GMT

    Wonderful description! Haddin ought to have been the hero, but well done Anderson. Agree, @Rodell Julien on (July 14, 2013, 20:39 GMT), Khawaja at #3 may help the necessary stability, but probably Warner (eventually) at this spot.

  • Ozcricketwriter on July 15, 2013, 2:10 GMT

    There was no certainty that he hit it. Benefit of the doubt is supposed to go to the batsmen when unsure. It certainly looked less than certain to me. That made 8 blunders for the match for the umpires - 5 against Australia and 3 against England. This one, of course, is the most telling, because it ultimately decided the match. Brad Haddin, who tried so hard to give his wicket away, being dropped twice, having a missed run out and at least once almost dragging the ball back on to his stumps, was ultimately out not by a player but by the umpire. That pretty much sums up the game really. At least the umpiring didn't favour one team over the other but oh what bad umpiring. DRS clearly isn't fixing umpiring blunders, and "umpire's call" has a lot to do with that. Benefit of the doubt needs to go to the batsman, not the umpires.

  • Natx on July 15, 2013, 3:17 GMT

    Good stuff from Haddin to show what Aussies are made of. There is nothing wrong in going down hard and the whole team can take heart from this effort. Some poor selections cost the team the match - without going into umpiring stuff. Cowan is out of place and wonder how he is still in the team. Starc needs a break for a match to understand his issues. Bring in Kawaja and Faulkner in their places for a balance and the team can give a better fight at Lords. Also not a bad idea to have steve smith bowl a few overs (though he can throw few pies) in each innings after 2 or 3 down, given the extraordinary record of English batters against leg spin bowling.

  • disco_bob on July 15, 2013, 3:29 GMT

    Each of the four innings in this match contained a failed hat trick ball. Symbolic of the evenness of the competition.