England v Australia, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's, 2nd day July 19, 2013

A rare five-for and Australia's batting woes

Shiva Jayaraman
Stats highlights from the second day of the second Ashes Test at Lord's

  • Graeme Swann's five-wicket haul in Australia's first innings was his 16th overall and second in the Ashes. His bowling effort was rare enough: he became only the fourth England spinner to take a five-wicket haul at Lord's in the Ashes. The last time an England spinner took a five-for at Lord's in the Ashes was by Hedley Verity, who took 15 wickets in this match way back in 1934.

  • Usman Khawaja's wicket was Swann's 100th in England. He became only the sixth spinner to take 100 or more wickets in Tests in England.

  • Swann's five-wicket effort was the first occasion in over five years (12 matches) of a spinner taking a five-wicket haul in the first innings at Lord's. Before this, Daniel Vettori took 5 for 69 against England in May 2008. The last time an England spinner took a five-for in the Ashes in England was Phil Tufnell's 7 for 66 at The Oval in August 1997.

  • Not since 1984 has Australia's batting lagged behind their opponent's by such an extent. The last time Australia failed to score 150 and conceded a lead of over 200 runs in the first innings was against West Indies in this match in 1984. Australia have conceded a 200-run lead in the first innings of an Ashes Test on 23 occasions before this match, and have managed to save the Test only five times.

  • Only five times in Test history have teams come back to win the match after conceding a 200-run lead in the first innings. One of them was the South Africa-England Test when the teams agreed to force a result by forgoing one innings each after losing three playing days to inclement weather. The last time a team won after falling 200 runs or more behind was the famous Kolkata-Test in 2001.

  • Australia's abject batting performance in their first innings at Lord's summed up how clueless their batting has been in the last year or so. Australia's first innings in this match was the third time they have been seven down for less than hundred in the last year; among Test playing nations, only New Zealand have done worse - they have been in this situation four times.

  • This was the eighth time out of 13 innings that Australia haven't been able to post a score of 300 or more runs in an innings, in the last year. This does not include Michael Clarke's declaration against India at Hyderabad, when Australia were 237 for 9. Among the top Test teams, again, only New Zealand have done worse.

  • Australia's first four batsmen in their line-up have contributed, largely, to their team's batting woes. They have not been allowed to spend much time at the crease by the opposition bowlers. Their top order has faced 52, on average, balls per batsman-innings. The top four batsmen of only West Indies and Pakistan have hung around for fewer deliveries in Tests in 2013.

     No.1 to No.4 batsmen peformance & average deliveries faced per innings
    Team Players Inns Runs Ave BF 100s 0s BF/Inns
    West Indies 5 11 218 24.22 390 1 2 35.45
    Pakistan 5 24 484 20.16 1242 1 4 51.75
    Australia 9 52 1263 24.28 2696 0 7 51.84
    South Africa 5 28 1051 38.92 1868 2 8 66.71
    New Zealand 7 52 1589 31.78 3470 4 5 66.73
    Bangladesh 7 31  962 33.17 2143 1 0 69.12
    India 6  28 1331 53.24 2246 4  0 80.21
    England 7 52 1850 36.27 4435  5 4 85.29
    Sri Lanka 6 24 1341 60.95 2230 5  2 92.91

  • Not surprising then, their top four batsmen are yet to score a hundred from 52 innings in 2013. They are the only Test team not to have a single hundred from their top four batsmen. They are also the team with most ducks - seven - from batsmen at batting at No.1 to No.4

Shiva Jayaraman is a sub-editor (stats) at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • CapitalMarkets on July 19, 2013, 23:06 GMT

    Australia suffer from a lack of good batsmen. Using Trevor Bailey's definition of "good", "very good" and "great" batsmen as averaging 40+, 45+ and 50+ respectively in Test Matches, Australia have one great batsman, Clarke who averages 51 (Viv Richards only averaged 50 in Test Matches over his distinguished career) and the rest of top seven their batsmen average between 29 (Khawaja) to 35 (Watson and Haddin). Contrast this with England's established "five" of Cook, Trott, Pietersen, Bell and Prior who average 47,49, 48, 45 and 43 respectively. It is apparent that Australia are giving more than ten runs away per batsman. Whilst Cook appears to be out of form, it is significant that Pietersen and the entire Australian supporting cast seem to have lost their collective understanding that their wicket is precious. This would appear to coincide with their exposure to T20 where losing your wicket does not matteras long as you don't do that more often than once every two overs. It's pitiful.

  • HenryPorter on July 20, 2013, 7:46 GMT

    Nice timely analysis - and the "value your wicket" conclusion is spot on. The key number in the last Table is the 9 for the number of players that Oz has already tried at 1-4 - and we're only halfway through 2013!

  • CapitalMarkets on July 19, 2013, 23:06 GMT

    Australia suffer from a lack of good batsmen. Using Trevor Bailey's definition of "good", "very good" and "great" batsmen as averaging 40+, 45+ and 50+ respectively in Test Matches, Australia have one great batsman, Clarke who averages 51 (Viv Richards only averaged 50 in Test Matches over his distinguished career) and the rest of top seven their batsmen average between 29 (Khawaja) to 35 (Watson and Haddin). Contrast this with England's established "five" of Cook, Trott, Pietersen, Bell and Prior who average 47,49, 48, 45 and 43 respectively. It is apparent that Australia are giving more than ten runs away per batsman. Whilst Cook appears to be out of form, it is significant that Pietersen and the entire Australian supporting cast seem to have lost their collective understanding that their wicket is precious. This would appear to coincide with their exposure to T20 where losing your wicket does not matteras long as you don't do that more often than once every two overs. It's pitiful.

  • HenryPorter on July 20, 2013, 7:46 GMT

    Nice timely analysis - and the "value your wicket" conclusion is spot on. The key number in the last Table is the 9 for the number of players that Oz has already tried at 1-4 - and we're only halfway through 2013!

  • HenryPorter on July 20, 2013, 7:46 GMT

    Nice timely analysis - and the "value your wicket" conclusion is spot on. The key number in the last Table is the 9 for the number of players that Oz has already tried at 1-4 - and we're only halfway through 2013!

  • CapitalMarkets on July 19, 2013, 23:06 GMT

    Australia suffer from a lack of good batsmen. Using Trevor Bailey's definition of "good", "very good" and "great" batsmen as averaging 40+, 45+ and 50+ respectively in Test Matches, Australia have one great batsman, Clarke who averages 51 (Viv Richards only averaged 50 in Test Matches over his distinguished career) and the rest of top seven their batsmen average between 29 (Khawaja) to 35 (Watson and Haddin). Contrast this with England's established "five" of Cook, Trott, Pietersen, Bell and Prior who average 47,49, 48, 45 and 43 respectively. It is apparent that Australia are giving more than ten runs away per batsman. Whilst Cook appears to be out of form, it is significant that Pietersen and the entire Australian supporting cast seem to have lost their collective understanding that their wicket is precious. This would appear to coincide with their exposure to T20 where losing your wicket does not matteras long as you don't do that more often than once every two overs. It's pitiful.