England v Australia, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's, 3rd day July 20, 2013

Root's landmark day flays Australia

182

England 333-5 (Root 178*, Bell 74) and 361 lead Australia 128 by 566 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Joe Root has shown an ability to adapt to any given match situation in his brief international career. The brief for England on a Lord's Saturday was to take the heat out of the game and bat Australia into oblivion. And so Root did. Around the time that Australia were conscious only of the fact that there was no hope, he raised his bat to celebrate a maiden Test hundred as an England opener.

"Grind them down, Joe" would have been the message. It is a rare young player who feels so comfortable with such an instruction. If an occasional back-foot drive was reminiscent of Michael Vaughan, in the first two sessions there was a touch of Geoffrey Boycott in his fastidiousness.

The benefits then accrued in a rush as England, who made 141 off 58 overs against solid but uninspired bowling in the first two sessions, piled up a further 162 in 32 overs after tea. Root's well-structured 97 blossomed into an unbeaten 178 which left his quality incontestable. England closed the third day with a lead of 566. No side has chased that to win in the fourth innings in the history of first-class cricket. Australia were not thinking about it. They were just thinking about bed.

Root took five-and-three-quarter hours for his hundred, poring over it so intently that he might have replaced his helmet with gown and mortar board. He, too, has been in his year of graduation, and now he has emerged with honours, stilling the discussion surrounding his supplanting of Nick Compton as opener at the start of the Investec Ashes series.

If he had been caught on Friday evening on 8, when wicketkeeper, Brad Haddin, and first slip Michael Clarke left the catch to each other, life might have felt different. Instead, once his hundred had been achieved and with England looking for impetus in the final session, he gambolled along, his inventiveness at its height, particularly against the left-arm spin of Ashton Agar.

Australia's quicks had shouldered a heavy workload over the past 11 days and, with Root's hundred settled eight balls after the new ball was available, Clarke chose not to take it to spare his quicks further punishment. It became an increasingly perplexing call. Root and Ian Bell became increasingly carefree until a stand of 153 came to grief when Bell, on 74, hauled a long hop from Steve Smith to midwicket.

Australia were aggrieved that Bell, when only 3, had not fallen to a catch by Smith at gully when Ryan Harris forced the edge. The umpires handed it to the TV umpire, Tony Hill, to determine if the ball had carried. It was a tough decision, as there was the vaguest suspicion that the ball might have burst through Smith's hands, but the foreshortening of a TV lens notoriously can make good catches seem illegal and it was probably out.

If Clarke was to bowl spinners so avidly in the final session, he could have done with a proven one. As Agar and Smith bowled in tandem, it felt like an educative process, the teaming up of a fledgling slow left-armer and a legspinner who has largely shelved the craft while putting more emphasis on his batting. There is nothing wrong with education. It just felt odd that it should be taking place in the middle of an Ashes series.

Australia's three-wicket burst at the close of the second day had lifted heartbeats, but as the match progressed past its mid-point, they were searching for a pulse. In the first two sessions, they took only one wicket, that of the nightwatchman, Tim Bresnan, whose disciplined innings ended when he flat-batted a pull against James Pattinson to midwicket, a reward for Pattinson, who had made the previous ball rear awkwardly.

Bresnan's batting and bowling statistics have declined markedly since his elbow operation, but he is having a decent Test. Two successive boundaries against Siddle possessed some fortune - an edge in front of Phil Hughes at third slip and a leg-side clip - but Australia were unable to maintain the threat.

Australia's collapse to 128 all out on the second day had been inexplicable, but the quick loss of three England wickets to the new ball had left the slightest unease. The ball was turning, and would turn more, and there was occasional uneven bounce, but nothing untoward. Root's response was faultless.

Only in the final session as the pace of the pitch lessened and the bounce of the ball became more erratic did it become a more challenging surface for batting and by then England's batsman were in the mood to disregard it.

England's nightwatchman tactics do not please everybody, but twice in this Test their logic has been hard to fault. In the first innings, the use of James Anderson as a nightwatchman to protect Stuart Broad, a No . 9, was felt by some to be risible, but Broad and Graeme Swann embarked upon a crowd-pleasing last-wicket stand which lifted England's mood.

As Root walked onto the Lord's outfield on Saturday morning, it seemed shrewd that this time the nightwatchman should be Bresnan, a fellow Yorkshireman able to offer a few words of counsel if his mood ran away itself, and with enough credentials with the bat to have the chance of making a contribution of his own.

England settled carefully. It was six overs before Root risked a cover drive against Pattinson, not entirely securely. Pattinson, who has struggled to settle to the vagaries of the Lord's slope, had a much more solid day. But Root met everything judiciously. Australia, recognising his strength on the back foot, sought to draw him forward, but two easeful straight drives against Siddle had suggested by lunch that his weaknesses are merely comparative.

In the afternoon, he batted time. But he is a calculating batsman behind that smile and he would have liked his hundred before tea. Clarke challenged him to do just that in the last over before the break when he introduced the legspin of Smith. A cut boundary took him to 96, Agar dived at extra cover to prevent another boundary and he could only hack a full toss to mid-off. There had been no over with such incident all day.

Back out again he came after tea, on 97. Shane Watson made one leap, Agar made one creep out of the footholds. Smith made a great diving stop at gully. Root grinned at the fun of it all. Then he cut Agar to reach his hundred. Immediately, the shackles were off and a quietly appreciative crowd sensed that things had become more frolicsome. In the penultimate over, he rounded things off by twice heaving Smith over midwicket for six, any inhibitions of the morning long since cast aside.

Soon after his hundred, a member of the MCC groundstaff brought him a drink. It was his brother, Billy, not a bad player himself apparently. They shook hands formally and then broke into a quick hug. Life is going your way when the family can stroll on to congratulate you during a Lord's Test match Saturday.

David Hopps is the UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • jmcilhinney on July 21, 2013, 3:40 GMT

    @talkcric.com on (July 20, 2013, 19:41 GMT), so Australia now have a chance to bat for two days yet, if they had followed-on when the pitch was in better condition, they couldn't have? The best Australia could have done if they'd followed on would have been 400 yet now, on a significantly more worn pitch and against fresher England bowlers, they can do better than that? Is finishing the game early really something to strive for for its own sake? The game might still finish a day early but Australia have new spent an extra day in the field. You are overstating things considerably. I wouldn't call Cook's approach aggressive but it's not negative.

  • landl47 on July 20, 2013, 20:03 GMT

    England followed the blueprint pretty well today. The morning was almost perfect, no wickets lost, 83 runs added and Australia made to toil in the field. I thought Australia bowled very well in the afternoon session, especially Siddle and Pattinson, and England did well to survive with only one wicket lost. In the last session, with the Aus bowlers exhausted, England kept them out in the field and piled on the runs. I suspect they might bat for a few minutes tomorrow mornnig just to tire the Aussie attack some more, then it's 5 1/2 sessions on a worn pitch for Aus to survive.

    This is attritional cricket, looking to the rest of the series as well as this game. England has drawn the line in the sand; it's for the Aussies to step up now.

  • citizenkc on July 20, 2013, 19:27 GMT

    The resounding crash that one heard around the Lord's cricket ground today was also heard all around the cricketing world. It was the sound of a mighty oak falling to the ground. The dominant team of the last fifteen years has been felled and when great teams fall to the ground there is always a sense of regret. What never seemed possible when Warne and McGrath were weaving their spells, when Waugh and Ponting were grinding down opposing teams, and when Gilchrist and Hayden were flaying the best bowlers as if they were club cricketers has now come to pass. The Australian team is now facing six straight losses. The signs were obviously there in India, but one could make excuses about subcontinental conditions; the spirited innings by Agar and Siddle's bowling in the first test only hid what was inevitable. This test has finally made it impossible to ignore the rotting branches; the tree has fallen, but may the sun continue to shine on this marvelous game.

  • MartinC on July 20, 2013, 16:07 GMT

    Good knock from Joe Root, showing the Aussie batsmen how you build a Test innings. Good effort to keep going from the Aussie bowlers but England have reminded us all how you build a Test innings today and bat the opposition out of the game.

    Tomorrow we will find out if there is any spine in this Aussie side as they try to scrap for a draw or at least make England work for the much more likely win.

  • Blade-Runner on July 21, 2013, 11:05 GMT

    No surprise here.. LBW's follow Watson where ever he goes. The only surprise is that he didn't review it.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 21, 2013, 11:03 GMT

    If only Rogers could score at better than snail's pace, Australia's opening pair could actually put a decent 70+ partnership, that will give confidence to the rest of the batting as well. Right now, Watson has to do the bulk of the scoring and when the wicket falls at say 40, he has scored around 35 of those runs. For example, Aus is 24/1 with Watson out for 20. There is absolutely no contribution coming from Rogers. Aus must have thought that Rogers would be a good addition to the Aussie team. To the contrary, his addition at the top of the order has completely destabilized the Aussie batting. Someone like Phil or Warner would have complemented Watson very well. With Rogers at the top, I do not see any 100+ opening stand, let alone a 300+ team total.

  • TheBigBoodha on July 21, 2013, 10:51 GMT

    With no pressure after the inexplicable innings of 120 in perfect batting conditions against bowling that never rose above ordinary, England's batsmen had zero pressure, and were free to bat at their preferred two runs an over. Avoid risk and wait for the opposition to make mistakes.

    For me the 120 was the worst ever performance by an Australian batting team, simply because of the farcical self-destruction in perfect batting conditions. On that track on days 2/3, 400 would have been a par performance. At least with the 47 vs SA it was a total minefield, and SA were just as bad that day - lost 9/47.

    The bowlers have done nothing wrong, and Engand underscored in both innings, IMHO. It's just that the AUS innings made them look good.

  • on July 21, 2013, 10:08 GMT

    I think I can pinpoint the start of the gradual Aussie decline. It was not with Warne and McGrath's retirement. Rather it was in the 2nd test In Sydney in Jan 2008 against India. Australia won that test in very controversial circumstances to secure the Border-Gavaskar trophy following an appalling umpiring performance by Steve Bucknor. India then seemed to get inside Australia's head and turned the controversy to their advantage. In the following test in Perth on the bouncy fast bowlers paradise, Australia were supposed to be certainties to win, but with an incredibly timid performance they lost. They managed to draw the next and final test in Adelaide to win that series 2-1, but from then on they were never same with for example India defeating them in the one day triangular tournament immediately following the tests. I give you one guess to work out the main thorn in Australia's side in this controversy. As for this test and series, the final result is now a foregone conclusion.

  • whoster on July 21, 2013, 9:59 GMT

    England, and in particular Root with his magnificent century, have been ruthless. Saturday was probably an even more catastrophic day for the Aussies, as it put into perspective just how dire their1st innings effort really was. Time and time again the Aussies just don't show the application and discipline required, and that's why, over the past 2-3 years, they keep getting bowled out for ridiculous totals - in all forms of the game. I feel sorry for guys like Siddle and Harris - two fine bowlers who keep running in and giving it everything, only for the Aussie batsmen to make their efforts worthless. On and off the field, Australian cricket is a shambles. England are a tough side with plenty of talent and mental strength, but the fact that this Aussie side are making England look as good as their own legendary side of a few years ago is embarrassing. Having said all that, it's jolly good fun to watch!

  • landl47 on July 21, 2013, 9:46 GMT

    Interesting that Harris got so little bowling yesterday. Has Clarke already given up on this test and is saving Harris for Manchester, or has Harris picked up another injury? Otherwise why would the best of Aus's bowlers in the first innings get less overs than anyone except Watson in the second?

    I said before the series started that Harris and Pattinson in the same side was asking for trouble. Yesterday's inexplicable (as yet) failure for Harris to play a major role shows that assessment was right.

  • jmcilhinney on July 21, 2013, 3:40 GMT

    @talkcric.com on (July 20, 2013, 19:41 GMT), so Australia now have a chance to bat for two days yet, if they had followed-on when the pitch was in better condition, they couldn't have? The best Australia could have done if they'd followed on would have been 400 yet now, on a significantly more worn pitch and against fresher England bowlers, they can do better than that? Is finishing the game early really something to strive for for its own sake? The game might still finish a day early but Australia have new spent an extra day in the field. You are overstating things considerably. I wouldn't call Cook's approach aggressive but it's not negative.

  • landl47 on July 20, 2013, 20:03 GMT

    England followed the blueprint pretty well today. The morning was almost perfect, no wickets lost, 83 runs added and Australia made to toil in the field. I thought Australia bowled very well in the afternoon session, especially Siddle and Pattinson, and England did well to survive with only one wicket lost. In the last session, with the Aus bowlers exhausted, England kept them out in the field and piled on the runs. I suspect they might bat for a few minutes tomorrow mornnig just to tire the Aussie attack some more, then it's 5 1/2 sessions on a worn pitch for Aus to survive.

    This is attritional cricket, looking to the rest of the series as well as this game. England has drawn the line in the sand; it's for the Aussies to step up now.

  • citizenkc on July 20, 2013, 19:27 GMT

    The resounding crash that one heard around the Lord's cricket ground today was also heard all around the cricketing world. It was the sound of a mighty oak falling to the ground. The dominant team of the last fifteen years has been felled and when great teams fall to the ground there is always a sense of regret. What never seemed possible when Warne and McGrath were weaving their spells, when Waugh and Ponting were grinding down opposing teams, and when Gilchrist and Hayden were flaying the best bowlers as if they were club cricketers has now come to pass. The Australian team is now facing six straight losses. The signs were obviously there in India, but one could make excuses about subcontinental conditions; the spirited innings by Agar and Siddle's bowling in the first test only hid what was inevitable. This test has finally made it impossible to ignore the rotting branches; the tree has fallen, but may the sun continue to shine on this marvelous game.

  • MartinC on July 20, 2013, 16:07 GMT

    Good knock from Joe Root, showing the Aussie batsmen how you build a Test innings. Good effort to keep going from the Aussie bowlers but England have reminded us all how you build a Test innings today and bat the opposition out of the game.

    Tomorrow we will find out if there is any spine in this Aussie side as they try to scrap for a draw or at least make England work for the much more likely win.

  • Blade-Runner on July 21, 2013, 11:05 GMT

    No surprise here.. LBW's follow Watson where ever he goes. The only surprise is that he didn't review it.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 21, 2013, 11:03 GMT

    If only Rogers could score at better than snail's pace, Australia's opening pair could actually put a decent 70+ partnership, that will give confidence to the rest of the batting as well. Right now, Watson has to do the bulk of the scoring and when the wicket falls at say 40, he has scored around 35 of those runs. For example, Aus is 24/1 with Watson out for 20. There is absolutely no contribution coming from Rogers. Aus must have thought that Rogers would be a good addition to the Aussie team. To the contrary, his addition at the top of the order has completely destabilized the Aussie batting. Someone like Phil or Warner would have complemented Watson very well. With Rogers at the top, I do not see any 100+ opening stand, let alone a 300+ team total.

  • TheBigBoodha on July 21, 2013, 10:51 GMT

    With no pressure after the inexplicable innings of 120 in perfect batting conditions against bowling that never rose above ordinary, England's batsmen had zero pressure, and were free to bat at their preferred two runs an over. Avoid risk and wait for the opposition to make mistakes.

    For me the 120 was the worst ever performance by an Australian batting team, simply because of the farcical self-destruction in perfect batting conditions. On that track on days 2/3, 400 would have been a par performance. At least with the 47 vs SA it was a total minefield, and SA were just as bad that day - lost 9/47.

    The bowlers have done nothing wrong, and Engand underscored in both innings, IMHO. It's just that the AUS innings made them look good.

  • on July 21, 2013, 10:08 GMT

    I think I can pinpoint the start of the gradual Aussie decline. It was not with Warne and McGrath's retirement. Rather it was in the 2nd test In Sydney in Jan 2008 against India. Australia won that test in very controversial circumstances to secure the Border-Gavaskar trophy following an appalling umpiring performance by Steve Bucknor. India then seemed to get inside Australia's head and turned the controversy to their advantage. In the following test in Perth on the bouncy fast bowlers paradise, Australia were supposed to be certainties to win, but with an incredibly timid performance they lost. They managed to draw the next and final test in Adelaide to win that series 2-1, but from then on they were never same with for example India defeating them in the one day triangular tournament immediately following the tests. I give you one guess to work out the main thorn in Australia's side in this controversy. As for this test and series, the final result is now a foregone conclusion.

  • whoster on July 21, 2013, 9:59 GMT

    England, and in particular Root with his magnificent century, have been ruthless. Saturday was probably an even more catastrophic day for the Aussies, as it put into perspective just how dire their1st innings effort really was. Time and time again the Aussies just don't show the application and discipline required, and that's why, over the past 2-3 years, they keep getting bowled out for ridiculous totals - in all forms of the game. I feel sorry for guys like Siddle and Harris - two fine bowlers who keep running in and giving it everything, only for the Aussie batsmen to make their efforts worthless. On and off the field, Australian cricket is a shambles. England are a tough side with plenty of talent and mental strength, but the fact that this Aussie side are making England look as good as their own legendary side of a few years ago is embarrassing. Having said all that, it's jolly good fun to watch!

  • landl47 on July 21, 2013, 9:46 GMT

    Interesting that Harris got so little bowling yesterday. Has Clarke already given up on this test and is saving Harris for Manchester, or has Harris picked up another injury? Otherwise why would the best of Aus's bowlers in the first innings get less overs than anyone except Watson in the second?

    I said before the series started that Harris and Pattinson in the same side was asking for trouble. Yesterday's inexplicable (as yet) failure for Harris to play a major role shows that assessment was right.

  • on July 21, 2013, 9:18 GMT

    very sad that the australian cup is empty.I remember back in 1984 thay were not winning much ,but all could see that a new crop of young cricketers slowly moving into limelight,Tom Moody, dean jones,steve waugh,craig mcdermott,Bruce reid geoff marsh,Boon were some who belonged to this list.Soon in 87 they won the world cup in India and have been a force to reckon with till recent past.Now we do not see any young talent coming through.very very sad.

  • VivGilchrist on July 21, 2013, 9:16 GMT

    England have outplayed Australia no doubt. Australia have a very good bowling attack, I would say better than England's. The problem is, is that they are only getting short break from being out in the field. They have bowled well to restrict England, but only have a little rest before going back out to score the bulk of the runs, and then return to the field to start bowling again. I think they're just knackered at the moment. On a side point, Bell should've been given out on 3, even Mr Gower was shocked!

  • CricketingStargazer on July 21, 2013, 9:09 GMT

    Talk of a declaration is ridiculous. Don't get soft and let the Australians off the hook. There are six sessions left. Does anyone really think that there is any danger of Australia surviving six sessions? If they could, they would make these runs... 150 more than any side has ever made to win a test.

    Declare no earlier than mid-morning. You can even make a case for making Australia come out for an over or two after lunch. Go for the mental disintegration that they used so much on us in the past. Five sessions is plenty. Get Joe Root up to his 200. Get Jonny Bairstow a 50 and some confidence. And leave the fielders want to die to end the pain.

  • on July 21, 2013, 8:13 GMT

    I being neutral felt day belonged to England...Still, I don't believe Root played extraordinary innings, he just exploited poor fielding placements and below par Aussie efforts.

  • thelapal on July 21, 2013, 8:12 GMT

    The only way australia can draw this test match is another great innings from Agar and a fighting knock from pattinson and some pathetic bowling from anderson,broad and swann. lets wait and see if any of the above is possible when england already knows that they cant loose this match. i can smell the timber from watson bat he can't stay there he knows that he don't have that much patience.

  • YorkshirePudding on July 21, 2013, 8:11 GMT

    @kdevil3, why do you have such faith in Watson, the guy is a liability as an opener. You might have a point about clarke but he'll need a triple batting for 6 sessions after being in the field for 7 out of 9 sessions will have been draining mentally and physically, and to be honest I think the main issue for aus is finding someone to stay with clarke long enough.

    Last night we saw he was just waiting for the declaration from about tea onwards, his refusal to take the new ball was insane as while the bowlers may have gone for a few runs, he would have picked up wickets and could have attacked.

    Finally at the current point in time the maths are simple, Aus need 3.11 runs per over to win by close of play tomorrow england need 11 wickets.

  • on July 21, 2013, 8:07 GMT

    Australia look like clueless India which last 8 test in a trot. Clarke need to wear thinking cap , need to rotate bowlers. spinners need closing fielders, even for new batsmen pressure wasn't applied. Haddin hided behind the stump can't help spinner, instead more visual communication reqd. For Aus 2nd innings Clarke & Ashton can open, Ashton to take risk and shouldn't allow Brit bowlers to settle in rhythm. Watson should be used to strengthen middle order, Clarke should anchor to make 250+. It looked like after Bell reached 13 Aussie let of the game, if they loose this they should know they will be COOKed.

  • kdevil3 on July 21, 2013, 7:41 GMT

    I need Aud to win this in record breaking fashion ..Hope watson double & clark century, Haddin 50 will make it 350 ,,,, Rest of useless top order batting line 100.Tailenders 150 .final target ..600

  • Jeremy303 on July 21, 2013, 7:40 GMT

    Wearing Australia's bowlers out for the third test is not a bad ploy. Psychologically it will hit the Australian dressing room hard, but physically there is enough depth in the pace bowling ranks to sustain the rotation of two bowlers. Jackson Bird and Mitchell Starc are both test quality and Faulkner might get a run as the team's allrounder.

  • on July 21, 2013, 7:36 GMT

    Get Roots 200 then declare. I fancy it to be overcast today or at least really muggy so the seamers can profit as well as swann .

  • volmitius on July 21, 2013, 7:36 GMT

    "Life is going your way when the family can stroll on to congratulate you during a Lord's Test match Saturday." root has surely shown what he is capable of and his struggle against aussie quicks late friday and early saturday paid dividends late in the day. he is a class act.

  • on July 21, 2013, 7:35 GMT

    Australia's problem is significant...

    What is a cricket team's ultimate dream situation, a lead of 250, 3 days to play in an Ashes test ?

    Australia's problem is they could not confidently do what England did in the same shoes and have not looked likely for a couple of years !

  • on July 21, 2013, 6:45 GMT

    Why haven't they declared? 400 lead was more than enough... Maybe they are looking for the mental edge but if they bat through another session they are starting to risk a draw...

  • on July 21, 2013, 6:45 GMT

    England won't declare overnight, they'll wait till Root either gets his 200 or gets out. So at the latest, Aus will be batting by drinks.

  • YorkshirePudding on July 21, 2013, 6:37 GMT

    Basically england had to try and extinguish any hopes australia had of winning this game and also put doubts in their heads, ready for the rest of this series, and the next one.

    I have doubts about about the Old trafford pitch as its had some very low scoring games, and spinners could be a handful.

  • Partyman on July 21, 2013, 6:32 GMT

    England despite being favourites, still need to put in a lot of hard work to win this test. Doubt the Aussies will fold easily in the second innings. I remember the 2006 Lords test against Sri Lanka, where the Sri Lankans batted over 2 days to save the test. I hope England don't go through that here again, despite this pitch being flat as a road.

  • dunger.bob on July 21, 2013, 5:31 GMT

    I don't know any one who thinks it will take England 6 sessions to bowl us out again, so I reckon the safest option for them to take is to declare over-night. .. They already have more than enough runs in the bank so the only reason to keep batting is to mess with our bowlers heads and bodies some more. I suppose that's fair enough. We'd do it if we could. .. however there is some risk involved in it. .. Risk of injury to either of the o'night batsmen for a start. .. perhaps the weather might do something unexpected and wipe out a session or two. ... Maybe, just maybe the Aussies will show some decent skill in the 2nd dig and hold you up longer than expected. .. yeah, well, anyway I hope you get my drift. I just can't see that there is more to gain than lose by continuing to bat this morning.

  • Lmaotsetung on July 21, 2013, 5:18 GMT

    @ glennaki - If you want to know whether the next generation of English cricketers are going to be as good as the current crop look no further than the Yorkshire youth system. Sam Robson, who the Aussies would love to have on their side right this moment might not even get a sniff at playing for England because there is another young Yorkshire opener name Alex Lees who just scored a double and a half this week. Simon Kerrigan who has been in the Lions set up would have already made it into the main team were it not for a couple of finger spinners name Swann and Panesar. Not to mention Johnny Bairstow getting an early start as Prior's replacement without disturbing the current setup. ECB is so far ahead that it'll take a lot of money and hard work to get back on even terms. Nothing short of a total reconstruction is needed to get CA back to where they can compete again...that's just MHO.

  • cric_J on July 21, 2013, 5:05 GMT

    Yesterday was probably the first day of this Ashes series that belonged wholly and solely to one team , from the first session to the last.

    A heartening century for Joe root. A very special one for him being an Ashes hundred and at Lord's. He had to fight it out at the end of day 2 and in the first session yesterday , but hardly put a foot wrong thereafter. This innings just goes on to show his grit , patience and maturity. And yeah , I simply loved the smile that he flashed after hitting those consecutive sixes in Smith's over later on and one that he just keeps on flashing even while being sledged. Hopefully he can get a double ton tomorrow.

    Brilliant by Bell and well done Tim Bresnan too.

    IMO England will (and must) declare once Root gets to 200. And they almost look certain to go 2-0 up as getting almost 100 runs per session to win the match would have been tough for the Aussies of 2006 as well , let alone this team.

  • Sandt on July 21, 2013, 4:58 GMT

    Australia needs to change the captain.Clarke is not able to control his team or have any idea how to react when a partnership is going.He is not a good captain and was evident in 2nd morning when he tried with his fast bowlers who was hit all around the park by Eng last pair and added 60 plus runs.He didn't try smith who has bowled so well on first day and he didn't use him properly.Also he is not influencing the team as he is the most senior player and needs to inject some confidence in his side.

  • Shekahr_123 on July 21, 2013, 4:45 GMT

    Now is the right time for Aussies (inducing Clarke) to write an essay on "What is the Test Cricket and How to build innings." It looks all of them have landed on earth today like aliens and asked to play test match. Since last 1 year Clarke is being bold / talking bold about future , improvements and learning's from mistakes. Well the whole cricketing world sees the improvement. Every test match they are degrading. Bring Haydon , Hussy / Warne / Punter back they will lift the spirit and game for Aussies.

  • Makkumatr on July 21, 2013, 4:36 GMT

    One important aspect being overlooked is how awful a day of Test cricket it was for audience and fans. Boring without excitement, very one-sided, a slow scoring rate and both teams slowly progressing towards a certain result in the 3rd day itself - days like these demonstrate why Test cricket will die a slow death.

  • jmcilhinney on July 21, 2013, 3:49 GMT

    @TropicPleasure on (July 20, 2013, 17:34 GMT), my comments are quite consistent. The ball DID carry to Smith BUT it then burst through the fingers of his right hand. The ball DID NOT bounce BEFORE getting Smith but it looked like it DID touch the ground afterwards. That's what I'm saying. Smith was completely justified in believing he had caught the ball because it did go straight into his fingers but it then pushed through his fingers and looked like it did touch the ground. How much of the ground it touched and how much is enough to disallow the catch is the question. The commentators talked about the ball bobbling up afterwards and that was clearly because Smith did not have control of the ball with both hands. Smith did have pressure on the ball with both hands but he was not genuinely holding it with his right. I think far too many people are saying that it was obviously out it wasn't obvious. The batsman got the benefit of the doubt, as many people have said should be the case.

  • on July 21, 2013, 2:56 GMT

    I'm glad Root finally shed the bunny tag that he had built up since being moved up top. I honestly thought it was a huge error by England to move him so early. Glad he proved me wrong. Australia really are dire.

  • on July 21, 2013, 2:38 GMT

    I can't believe that some people are calling for the recall of Warner to the test team. Take a look at his figures in Zimbabwe for Australia "A" (6+11). What a joke!

  • BravoBravo on July 21, 2013, 2:37 GMT

    AUS team selectors need to retain the same time (barring injuries) for the rest of series again. I don't think it will cause any further humiliation which they are receiving now. Let Khwaja and Warner and Hughes settle down, and Clarke needs to lead and inspire from front like Ponting and Waugh were doing. AUS team recovery will take a while. AUS haven't recovered so far since they got thrashed by PAK at a total of 88 (July 2010, 2nd Test at Leeds). Even in their heydays, many team defeated AUS on occasions but PAK has been only team which gave them thrashing. Now, ENG is demolishing them and continue to do so, unless AUS stop doing frequent changes in their.

  • glennaki on July 21, 2013, 2:36 GMT

    Unfortunately, it would appear that England will win this test easily, and therefore retain the Ashes as I don't see Australia winning the next three!! England should enjoy their superiority as it wont last. Yes they are the better team now and deserve to be in the commanding position they are in. Their batting has been much more consistent; they don't get out playing shots a la Hughes and Khawaja in Australia's first innings. Their bowling has been a class above ours. They have used their reviews much more sensibly than us. However, the form of teams goes around in cycles. It may not change for the next Ashes series in Australia in our summer, but it will change. Is the next generation of English players going to be as good as Anderson, Swann, Bell etc?? I suppose only time will tell. I hope Australia put up some sort of fight in the next innings. Go boys!!

  • pharaohsdad on July 21, 2013, 2:06 GMT

    Congratulations to this superb young cricketer !!! His temperament will gain him many supporters and fans as time goes by and may he prosper in his openers role.

    The comparisons between Root/Watson and Merv Hughes/Atherton by Nasser Hussain was enjoyable.

  • on July 21, 2013, 1:59 GMT

    Cook was right not to enforce the follow-on, the crowd, spectators, the ticket sales, all appreciate it, the English batsman appreciate it, His bowlers having a break appreciate it, Swann appreciates the pitch becoming more fun, Australians have toiled in the field for over 200 overs now, and psychologically have been damaged by being set over 550 to win, He should declare if and when Root gets his ton, and give Australia 5 sessions to either survive or get out. If I was Cook I wouldve done exactly the same thing, and I don't see it as defensive at all.

  • on July 21, 2013, 1:39 GMT

    Popcorn. That was clear not out. The ball hit the ground and then Smith grabbed it. Please do not lead.

  • picket23 on July 21, 2013, 1:04 GMT

    3rd day couldn't have gone much better for Australia. The game was lost the day before, bowling England out half way through today would have been a disaster. Australia now penciled in to draw this match and take the series 3-1.

  • Shaggy076 on July 21, 2013, 0:47 GMT

    As for the Bell non dismissal it shows the greatest decline in sportsmanship in world cricket. The batsman is clearly out but they know video evidence of low catches are inconclusive. Bell in my opinion you should have walked this is lower than Broad not walking.

  • Shaggy076 on July 21, 2013, 0:40 GMT

    Those talking about the extent of the Aussie decline and comparing to Bangladesh should remember this same side beat Sri Lanka home and away, west Indies away so its not as far as you suggest. this has been one ordinarytest the English batsman showed today how good this pitch has been all game. imagine for a minute Haddin caught root 4/31 and different game I don't blame the Aussie bowlers they have been good.

  • hb1970 on July 21, 2013, 0:32 GMT

    After the one nervous innings put away, Khawaja will come good. He is too good a talent.

  • Jonathan_E on July 21, 2013, 0:06 GMT

    Bell was fully within his rights not to walk: it wasn't clear whether the ball had carried properly or not. The question of "walking" or not, is for when it's obvious that the catch is clean, but not so obvious whether the batsman has actually hit the ball.

    And, if the umpire saw fit to refer to a TV replay, then it means there was sufficient doubt as to whether the ball carried, that by the law of cricket, he could not have given the batsman out, since the benefit of any doubt MUST be given to the batsman.

    Obviously, the replay camera is intended to remove any such "doubt". Unfortunately, it failed to do so, therefore the third umpire was obliged - by law - to give the same verdict as the on-field umpire would have had to give, were there no replay: "not out".

  • dunger.bob on July 20, 2013, 23:51 GMT

    I thought the Aussies toiled away stoically in the field. .. The bowling was better than the first innings but the fielding was a bit flat .. they bowled pretty well but obviously still nowhere near good enough.

    Congrats to young Joe on a beautifully crafted knock. He looks to have really taken root doesn't he. It's good to see a young bloke show such a deep understanding of how a Test match innings can be built. .. I know 7 or 8 of our guys who could learn a hell of a lot from that knock. .. Ian Bell, what can you say. Mr. Dependable. Mr.Durable. Mr. Total Pain in the Backside. .. great player, good bloke, good luck to him.

    The really scary thing about this series so far for me is that England have been at about 60% of their batting potential. .. There's been very little from Cook so far, virtually nothing from KP and not the usual river of runs from Trott. .. of the England batters that we know and stress about, it's really only been Bell that's been firing. . That's bloody scary

  • USIndianFan on July 20, 2013, 23:46 GMT

    Its not all bad, though Australia are getting thrashed. Steve Smith needs to keep trying. The Aussie's need to play to stay - Rodgers seems to be doing good there. Agar seems to be doing really well. Basically treat it as a test and not as a one day.

    Hmmm. Arm-chair quarter-backing feels good. Hopefully the Aussies play better tomorrow..

  • citizenkc on July 20, 2013, 23:44 GMT

    @coldcoffee123 : You're right. This particular team was not dominant. Certainly the batting has never been this weak in a very long time. I meant the Australian team in general. After all, they still beat a decent India team 4-0 less than 2 years back.

  • on July 20, 2013, 23:30 GMT

    Australia's starting lineup for ashes series should be: 1. chris rogers 2. shane Watson 3. alex doolan 4. shaun marsh 5. Michael Clarke 6. steven smith 7. brad haddin 8. peter siddle 9. ryan harris 10. chadd sayers 11. fawad ahmed

  • brusselslion on July 20, 2013, 23:16 GMT

    @ landl47: I was at today's play and I have to disagree with you that Australia bowled well. Being generous, you might argue that they contained England but they rarely threatened OK, the pitch was clearly a factor behind this as it is still a belter, however, given the match situation, containment was never going to be enough; they needed wickets and this rarely looked likely.

    @Cpt.Meanster: I was at the Oval for a 2020 game on Friday night - got to get the money's worth out of the membership - and was bored titless. So, here's a proposition for you. You give up your anti-Test campaign and I won't start my anti-2020 campaign.

    A week or so ago on another thread, an Indian poster asked if there was a better young batsman in the world than Kohli? Certainly is.

  • on July 20, 2013, 23:15 GMT

    Interesting those saying this is Australias best team have forgotten about Patrick Cummins....currently playing for Australia A...and already has a 6 for in Test cricket vs Sth Africa. Time to ease him back into test cricket. Ahmed may also lay claims to being in Australias " best" team but so too may Lyon, Agar has shown very little with the ball so far and some one on one coaching with Dan Vettori would help him immensely.

  • on July 20, 2013, 22:53 GMT

    Australia is missing Huusey, Haden, Symonds, Gilchrist and of course Warne and Mc Grath, their replacement are so poor they should all go back to Sheffield Cricket. Poor Clarke he does not have the teams that Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting Had , This will take another 5 Years

  • on July 20, 2013, 22:24 GMT

    Now we know why David Warner had punched Joe Root. He knew what Root would do. It was anger in advance.

  • disco_bob on July 20, 2013, 21:42 GMT

    The first half hour will be where this game hinges. I'd have to say England have their noses in front maybe even their ears but if we bowl with discipline and allow them to reach 601 quickly then we can lull them into a hasty declaration and then unleash a piece of cricketing brilliance the likes of which has never been seen. I would, if I were Lehmann, advise Clark to open the chase with the batting order reversed with a licence to play their shots and if a wicket falls late in the first seesion put Watson in as the lunch-watchman to protect Agar.

  • Flighted_kiwi on July 20, 2013, 21:40 GMT

    @popcorn - it was not a 'howler'. Personally I thought it bounced but I concede others will see it as having carried and that's part of the problem. The on-field umpires weren't sure so referred it and the 3rd umpire obviously wasn't convinced and gave the batsmen the benefit of the doubt - a cricket convention although not actually in the rulebook. In the current climate of batsmen from both sides (and other nations) not walking, Bell was entitled to stand his ground. It was an almost identical situation to an ODI against Sri Lanka when Jayawardene claimed a catch and Ponting stood his ground. The same result followed - he was given not out. But I expect there'll be howls of outrage from Aussie supporters and dismissive comments from English supporters. Gotta love this game. Re the twitter message - when are CA going to get their administrative act together? They seem to have lost control of their game.

  • _Australian_ on July 20, 2013, 21:26 GMT

    How I miss the 90's. Back then I knew that golden time would end but I never would have expected the shoe to be on the other foot. Whilst our bowlers are doing an admiral job our batting is awful. Should all be put on notice if they don't show some mettle to try and draw this test.

  • JG2704 on July 20, 2013, 21:21 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster on (July 20, 2013, 17:44 GMT) Funny , I remember another team being whitewashed in consecutive away series and yet they've returned the favour on one of the whitewashers. Even if Eng whitewash Australia , Australia still have to play Eng at home which will be a much harder series and we must also remember that Aus only lost by a solitary test to SA after being on top for the prev 2 tests not too long ago and SA are head and shoulders above everyone else in tests right now. Oh and yes Eng are dominating right now but the previous tests and the Eng 1st inns had so many twists and turns any neutral would be gripped

  • on July 20, 2013, 21:07 GMT

    I completely disagree with the comments above....... After Australia's pitiful all out for 128 in the 1st innings, there was no way they were going to win this test. Therefore from that moment onwards, every over that England batted was one less that the Aussies would need to survive to save the match. As was evidenced by when the new ball was (or more to the point wasn't taken). Australia would be happier than England if Joe Root gets his 300 tomorrow!

  • Herbet on July 20, 2013, 21:04 GMT

    Why are Smith and Agar playing in this series? If they are better than Hauritz, Lyon or even Krezja then I am watching a different game. Australia are in total disaray, from the very top down.

  • BRUTALANALYST on July 20, 2013, 20:53 GMT

    If KP is out next Test I'd have to replace him with Carberry no doubt. KP has to be replaced with a like for like attacking batsman to slot in between Trott and Bell and Carberry is the best choice. He also comes off a 100 and has some all but brief international experience I don't think it's right to add another youngster thrown in the deep end of an Ashes series .

  • on July 20, 2013, 20:48 GMT

    Australia need to dismiss useless batsmen like cowan, khawaja, hughes and Watson. im sick and tired of these batsmen giving wickets away every match. we need to pick alex doolan at no 3. his batting average is close to 40 only but I think we will be a solid player for Australia. he can bat for long period of time and doesn't give his wicket away like cowan, hughes and khawaja. Australia desperately need young batsmen performing consistently in domestic cricket next season.

  • MartinC on July 20, 2013, 20:45 GMT

    To change tack from slamming the Aussie batting (much deserved as that is) what about the much hyped Pattinson? He has looked like someone who could develop into a very good bowler but on the evidence of the first two Tests he is not world class yet. He bowls at a good pace but is not express and while he does shape it away from the right hander as Michael Holding pointed out today he only gets significant movement when he starts it wide and so is less dangerous.

    He bowled well today in keeping things tight today but never looked threatening.

  • Twinkie on July 20, 2013, 20:42 GMT

    Does the benefit of the doubt still go to the batsman? Why are we calling close calls howlers? The jury is in. Aussies are terrible whiners and shall be made to eat their sour grapes. Please, stop questioning every umpiring decision and follow your own advice when you were getting the benefits. "Suck it up! The umpire's decision is final!'' Or is that just fror West Indians?

  • Guernica on July 20, 2013, 20:41 GMT

    Finally seen the Steven Smith 'catch' and can't believe all the fuss. He seemed to think he had caught it - but there is no way he could have been sure. He wasn't looking as he fell backwards onto his backside trying to keep it off the ground. None of the fielders seemed sure either. It may well have been a clean catch, but you have to accept that if you can't be sure about it, you can't give it. That's not to say Australia haven't been unlucky with some of the other decisions in this game.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 20:31 GMT

    @citizenkc "The dominant team of the last fifteen years has been felled"... No, that team fell years ago. When was THIS team dominant?

  • East_Ender on July 20, 2013, 20:24 GMT

    The Bell catch was not out. The ball clearly touched the ground as well as Smith's fingers The laws do not say it has to bounce! If the 3rd umpire has any doubt then it's NOT OUT. All the talking heads sagacity re lens foreshortening does not change that. Ball, blade of grass - not out.

  • popcorn on July 20, 2013, 20:16 GMT

    Catches win Matches. The simple, regulation,dolly catch that Joe Root gave to the wicket-keeper - first slip combine went abegging. Imagine 4 / 31.Now that has hurt us more. Either the English are running scared that we will score 567 and win this Test in the next two days, or they want to rub our noses to the ground for all the humiliation we have caused them over the years. Steve Smith took a clean catch. How many more howlers from the Umpires?

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 20:14 GMT

    @talk.cric What planet are you on? In the last 12 months Cook has a century against SA, 3 centuries in India, plus centuries home and away against NZ.

  • punter-gilly-haydos-mcgrath-warne on July 20, 2013, 20:12 GMT

    The Aussie selectors have no choice! They need to start building on a team of test specialists and then on teams for the shorter formats, they can't juggle all at once. They need to get Alex Doolan in for number three Khawaja to open with Warner HUughes at 4 Clarke at 5. Steven Smith at 6. Wade in at 7 and then the bowlers they can choose from and I think they need to Get Jackson Bird in and stick with him. But to keep trying new players who are playing T20 or ODI's is killing the Aussie team. It will take them time to settle but thy will get there. The only reason why it won't happen is because TV rights needs marketing and the best players will be in the test squad not playing the flashy T20s

  • YorkshirePudding on July 20, 2013, 20:10 GMT

    @H_Z_O, It wasnt those that said his promotion was too early I was aiming at (even I thought it was too early, Im appy i was wrong), even now on various boards they are calling for Root to be dropped down to 6 again and bring back Compton.

    I think Today showed that he has that ability to play both sides of the game the cautious run getter then the sweet stroke maker. The two 6's at the end of the day were lovely shots, and he plays around the wicket which makes setting a field difficult.

    I also suspect that England promoted Bresnan to Night watchman was to help steady root with a familiar face at the other end first thing, if that is what they did it was inspired and worked.

  • ansram on July 20, 2013, 20:07 GMT

    A weak Aussie side will not hurt the legacy of the Ashes. After all, England were at the receiving side for most part of the last three decades. Australia will probably bounce back, but this time they will be beaten to a pulp. 5-0 is a distinct possibility, with luck 4-1 may be.

  • GermanPlayer on July 20, 2013, 20:02 GMT

    @talkcric.com It wasn't a bad decision. The thing is that Smith was getting a lot of grip and Swann did take 5 wickets. On the evidence of that, England did not want to bat last. I think it was wise decision. Aus batting is highly unlikely to play out two days. Even if they do, they will still be 1-0 down. To be honest there is nothing threatening about this Aussie team. Yes Clarke and Watson will have their days but what then? England have got a settled team and each player can get stuck in. You can't say that for the Aussies...

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 20:00 GMT

    We've been hearing about Michael Clark's captaincy, how he always stays ahead of the game. Well Captain Marvel lost the plot after tea, retaining the old ball for an extra 30 overs while his inexperienced spinners got taken to the cleaners. As for his instinct for field placing, when he removed himself from slip Bell reverse swept repeatedly and Root edged twice.

  • gm47 on July 20, 2013, 19:57 GMT

    @talkcric Get wise England, you will only be 2-0 up cause the opposition are rubbish

    England can only thrash whatever is put against them....... India...Australia whatever country :)

  • H_Z_O on July 20, 2013, 19:57 GMT

    @64blip on (July 20, 2013, 18:58 GMT) Same goes for the follow-on. They had 445 runs on us, more than enough to bowl us out with that attack (we only scored 370).

    They had a day less left in the match too (they had 7 sessions left; we had 10). But they still didn't enforce the follow-on, because they were confident they'd still have plenty of time to bowl us out and setting a mammoth target (648) applies pressure because the batsmen are only batting for survival and the field can stay up.

    It's actually the Australian way. Psychologically wear your opponents down, weight of runs, let the opposition batsmen contemplate the Herculean task that awaits, as that only makes it easier for your bowlers to apply pressure.

    The other thing is, people forget how reckless Australia's batmen were, and I doubt they'd be quite as reckless again. What will be interesting is whether, because they know the target's almost impossible, they bat too conservatively to try and make up for the first innings.

  • on July 20, 2013, 19:52 GMT

    A magnificent innings by Root, and one he needed, in my opinion. If the chance had been taken last night, a penny for Compton's thoughts? Maybe an hour's mayhem tomorrow morning, to totally crush Australia's mental resolve, not just for this Test, but the three to come, and with an eye on the winter's Tests as well? No mercy on the Australians, I think they've demonstrated in the past that this was also their policy against England when they were on top.

  • maddy20 on July 20, 2013, 19:51 GMT

    @BradmanBestEver "Make hay while sun shines" After reading Lehmann's criticism of the Aussie FC cricket, it seems like when the Aussies do bounce back, I will have enough hay to feed the world's cattle for a decade atleast!

  • on July 20, 2013, 19:42 GMT

    Stumps upRooted. One format in cricket please. Players are more valuable than managers. Fair income to all and only that.

  • talkcric.com on July 20, 2013, 19:41 GMT

    @talkcric says England have again missed the chance of finnishing the game early by not following on when their opponents are on the ropes. Now the Aussies have a chance, although slim of being able to bat for 2 days and draw the match. If England would have enforced the follow on and the Aussies scored even 400 it would be a piece of cake but this negative England way of thinking is carryingnon where boring Strauss left off.

    I do not like Cook as Capt as he has not got it. Vaughan was a natural agressive and crafty Captain who really got at the oposition, Cook seems to dither and let situations carry on and his thinking on many occaisions has been foggy. Its getting to him with the bat as well. Its a long time since he looked world class with the bat.

    The bowlers will have a tougher time bowling the Aussies out over the next 2 days than iff they faced the follow on.

    Get wise England, you will only be 2-0 up cause the opposition are rubbish

  • sarangsrk on July 20, 2013, 19:36 GMT

    @C.A-SA1987.. even though I am an Indian, I still feel bad for such poor show by Aussies, not just in this series but also in India (4-0). However, I don't think Ashes is the pinnacle of cricket, leave alone other sports. Yes, its the oldest tradition and I am all for traditions/heritage etc but the Ashes in last 20 years has been way too one sided ( barring 2005 ofcourse which is the greatest test series I have seen and also, bit of 2009). When was England competitive from 90s to 2005? During this period, Aus-SA, Aus-Ind and Ind-Pak series have been much more competitive and worth watching. There is so much hype and build up (which you can be sure of from british media) but there is hardly a contest. I watch cricket for the love of the game (be it any format test/ODIs/T20s) and I even liked eng series in India which Ind lost because the cricket was of high quality and well contested. If this is the level of cricket coming up in next 8 Ashes matches, I am sure I would not be watching.

  • Biggus on July 20, 2013, 19:33 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster:-If you have 'illustrious' things to do what are you doing here posting? Shouldn't you be off curing global warming or nuclear proliferation or something befitting your abilities?

  • H_Z_O on July 20, 2013, 19:33 GMT

    @YorkshirePudding on (July 20, 2013, 16:35 GMT)

    "Well Played to Root, at least this should shut up the doubters and naysayers."

    I have to admit, I was one of those, I wasn't entirely sure about him as an opener just yet (I've never doubted his talent, I just thought it might be a bit too early).

    I was wrong. Not because he scored a century. I've always said Joe can bat. What worried me was that we might lose some of that freedom he plays with, the thing that makes him such an exciting player. He looked tentative and nervous until now but today he came out of his shell and showed the same batting ability he's shown down the order. Hopefully he takes the confidence from this and bats like this next Test and beyond.

    And I don't say this to rub it in, but I do hope someone like Phil Hughes was paying close attention to today. He can bat, he showed it in the last Test, but he needs to learn that being an attacking batsman doesn't mean swishing at a wide one when your team's in trouble.

  • MartinC on July 20, 2013, 19:31 GMT

    @CaptMeanster - your correct in your assertion that Test cricket relies on too many variables - the relative skill of 22 players for example.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on July 20, 2013, 19:30 GMT

    One of those times I am very happy to admit I was wrong, and my doubts about Root opening were very much unjust. Fantastic knock indeed! Lacklustre, downcast bowling yes, but difficult batting surface and nervous Lords vibes too. Definitely sorry and take all my moaning from yesterday and this morning back, and I'm even concerned about KP - is he O.K?

    Australia really must regroup to prevent this from being a one-sided series. Bowlers need to bounce back, and Clint McKay/Bird are needed instead of Pattinson/Starc in U.K. conditions. Batsmen like Warner are not the answer; scores of 6 and 11 against Zimbabwe should highlight that. Never understood why Katich was axed, and Clarke's dancing around the batting order when he's best at 5 is not helping. Still keeping their heads up though, which is great to see.

  • Lmaotsetung on July 20, 2013, 19:29 GMT

    Keep in mind Cook, Trott, KP, and Prior have had a very quiet Ashes so far. Like I mentioned before, the days of massive score and innings victory like the last Ashes and against India in 2011 are long gone. This will be more the norm where 1 or 2 batsman will fire while the rest bats around them. I don't think we'll see scores like 620/5d, 591/6d, or 710/7d, that often going forward and certainly not 517/1d. Very hard for every batsmen to be in top form at the same time but at the end of day class will prevail as we are witnessing now. As long as the batting lineup does not implode too often I'm fine with it. England will go up 2-0 and in all probability they'll get there without scoring over 400 runs in an innings. Scary thoughts if I was an Aussie fan.

  • IcTP on July 20, 2013, 19:25 GMT

    @ Kitschiguy on (July 20, 2013, 17:43 GMT): 1) Yes, people commenting on technical issues in an official/professional capacity ought to study at least the basics first.

    2) Yes to David Lloyd's doubts regarding the certainty of a low catch viewed by a camera pointing *even partially* downwards. Because of the downward angle, the ball appears in front of the grass, from the viewer's POV. At such a moment, one cannot be sure if a) the ball and grass are in contact, or if b) the fielder's fingers are between them.

    3) Further, the experts speak of the fielder's fingers being "under" the ball: one demonstrated a low catch, his ten fingers forming a solid curtain between ball and grass.

    But in practice the fingers are often split, forming "V"s under the ball, with enough room in between for the ball to touch the grass, before coming to rest in hand.

    4) But perspective compression *does* make legal catches look illegal, reducing *apparent* dist b/w ball & the ground behind it.

  • dropoutguy on July 20, 2013, 19:17 GMT

    Well, that is the opener debate resolved. I suspect that Root will have to make a change or two though. Press forward more and start playing the square cut against the new ball instead of the back foot force. I can see him nicking off in Australia on the bouncier pitches unless there is a little fine tuning. But a very fine innings.

    I doubt Compton will get back in. I don't believe England's selectors will take a third opener to Australia.

    If Pietersen is unfit for Old Trafford, I would bring in Taylor. I would also select Panesar and play him in place of Bairstow.

  • dscoll on July 20, 2013, 19:14 GMT

    Precisely when Eng declare will not affect the result of this match. Aus have no chance, it's just a matter of how big the victory is. But, this is the 2nd match of a 10 match series and it's an opportunity for Eng to inflict a massive psychological blow to Aus, so batting on and humiliating the Aussie attack is the correct decision. I suspect Cook will declare about 45 minutes before lunch tomorrow, then Jimmy and Swann will do the rest.

  • MartinC on July 20, 2013, 19:14 GMT

    For those asking why England don't declare as they have enough runs already (which they do) - its not about the runs it's about the state of the pitch and letting it continue to dry and wear for Swann to bowl on the 2nd innings. Let's not forget we have 2 full days to go in this Test.

  • thekaz on July 20, 2013, 19:06 GMT

    What an inning's by Joe Root, definately the best knock ive seen since Pietersen in India last year. The way he absorbed all the early pressure then when he got to 100 just took the Aussies apart, was signs of a true class player in the making. Micheal Clarke not taking the new ball said it all, they have given up already, where's the Aussie fight? I really do think 5-0 is a possibility now, Australia need to start batting properly quickly, a positive for England is that arguably our 3 best batsmen havent even got going yet. Payback for the 06/07 tour.

  • Cpt.Meanster on July 20, 2013, 19:05 GMT

    @whatawicket: It's easy to answer you. Technically, I DON'T watch test cricket in that I don't sit glued to my tv set all day wasting my time when I know I could have done something more illustrious or useful during that time. I could be informed about it through Cricinfo or any other cricket site. Also, there are highlight reels for a reason. Makes no difference to me. T20 cricket makes it an even contest for both teams as do ODIs. We actually have a contest in those formats. Test cricket relies on too many variables. The only real time when there is anything happening in a test match is on day 5 in the LAST session when a team is about to score runs to win or take wickets to beat the opposition. Plus, there is also this drama created around the Ashes which does tickle a bit of curiosity from the layman. After today's one-sided show, I am convinced about my judgement.

  • Shekahr_123 on July 20, 2013, 19:03 GMT

    Please don't play away tests with this team , you need to bring in confidence in this team. They can only win at home , play at home for couple of years and bring in confidence that they can win. For now , please bring in your U-19 team, they would fight with more intensity. Current team is a big ZERO in confidence , all these players should go back and play domestic cricket. Clarke doesn't look like a charged Captain, at times clueless about what to do.

  • CapitalMarkets on July 20, 2013, 19:01 GMT

    Firstly, I take no pleasure in seeing an abject and inept Australian side thrashed by England, as I don't think a whitewash will help England when they take on India and South Africa. I've been particularly disappointed with Brad Haddin's keeping thsi game (plus the run-out for which he was 100% responsible). He should have taken Root yesterday and he missed a stumping today. I'm not saying that England wouldn't have got to the position where the game is gone for Australia but, at 35, I think Haddin is a defensive selection and it is unclear to me what he gives over Matthew Wade.

    Secondly, I think that 6-1-4 has another weakness (aside from the obvious one, where England can introduce two batsmen but could never introduce a new bowler like Ashton Agar to Test Cricket). 6-1-4 means that it is difficult to envisage any circumstances in which Cook is going to enforce the follow-on. If you won't do it to shell-shocked men knocked over after 53 overs, you never will. That's defensive too.

  • 64blip on July 20, 2013, 18:58 GMT

    To all the posters saying England are conservative or even 'lack greatness' for setting a huge target for Aus, why don't you remind yourselves what the Aus side that included McGrath, Lee and Warne set England in the first Test of the 06/07 series?

  • on July 20, 2013, 18:56 GMT

    Oh, whoop - dee - doo!! So England are thrashing possibly the worst Aussie team that ever existed. Get some perspective people.

  • jackthelad on July 20, 2013, 18:55 GMT

    England need to bat another hour in the morning, just to drive it home; they'll still have time to bowl Oz out at least twice for under 600.

  • Shan156 on July 20, 2013, 18:54 GMT

    KP is out of this test and most likely out of the OT test too. Who do we have as a backup middle order batsman? Whatever happened to Taylor who, though did not set the world on fire, played decently against the Saffers last summer? Or, they may bring in Bopara? If it is Bopara, this probably would be his last opportunity to be around the test side. Hopefully, it won't be Morgan whose test career most likely finished in the UAE.

  • TheScot on July 20, 2013, 18:52 GMT

    @Greatest_Game: You are missing the point. By technology DingDong420 referred to the DRS as it is designed and used currently in cricket and not all the generic forms of technology. Same is the case with BCCI, they are not averse to technology (it would be a ridiculous thought) but the current DRS technology and its complicated use in a match. A belief that has recently been confirmed by Adam Gilchrist and other cricketing pundits.

  • jackthelad on July 20, 2013, 18:44 GMT

    I think 'young Joe' came of age today; he crafted a hundred and then - as any great batsman would have done - he didn't jump around and gift his wicket, he just settled himself to make another. I think this guy has a great future ahead of him.

  • whatawicket on July 20, 2013, 18:37 GMT

    cpt meanster.we know you do not like test cricket. this is the ashes and is always 5 tests. the grounds in eng and aus will be packed home and away with the coffers bulging that's whey its 5 tests. my biggest thought in replying to you is " why are you watching it". i feel the same for T20 that's why i don't watch it. lol

  • sarangsrk on July 20, 2013, 18:27 GMT

    @Greatest_Game...haha..looks like someone has been hired to defend the DRS here. Seriously, whats the point of using technology which is open for interpretations of 3rd umpires, leave alone its own "predictive" methods? A dismissal can't be overturned by 3rd umpire if not sufficient evidence. The questions are why not sufficient evidence even after spending so much on the technology and secondly, why can't an umpire overturn the on-field decision when the technology can't prove original decision wrong? Example - Trott LBW in 1st innings and Hughes caught behind yes'day when the hot spot didn't show any mark and the decision was given solely based on the sound (snicko is not part of DRS)? The sound could be of the bat handle which I have seen happening (you can't rule it out). So, If something is open for interpretations and human judgement, surely there would be differences which will lead to controversies. As it stands, DRS is creating more howlers than it is supposed to avoid.

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 18:26 GMT

    Too many greats left the Aussie team all at once. Cricket Australia should have seen it coming. They should have tried to get some youth in there sooner to give them some experience of winning games and playing cricket with people who knew what hard cricket was about. These lot don't value their wicket, they play the game as if it's a one day game. If I was an Aussie bowler I would be going mad, they are out there putting all the effort in and the batsman are just throwing their wicket away

  • RohanMarkJay on July 20, 2013, 18:25 GMT

    Well that was a thumping by England to Australia. England played very well. Can't wait when they go to Australia at the end of the year. Aussies play better in their own stadiums down under even this weaker aussie team are tough to beat down under, As Sri lanka, India, South Africa found out recently. It looks like England the only team that plays well downunder. No doubt they will be many Aussie citizens who will be upset. However Aussies don't despair. By next week the smile will return as they realise they live in one of the most liveable country's in the world. They have the best lifestyle of all the cricketing countries, aussies are a lucky bunch who on the whole live really well compared with most other countries. So I doubt they get depressed for long. Even though they care about the game of cricket and the Ashes a lot. Maybe their youngsters have had the good life for too long and forgotten what it means to grind out a tough fight like previous era aussie cricketers used to do.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 18:17 GMT

    To all those who are saying Smith took a clean catch and the TV umpire needs to get educated about camera angles,.... I have this to say: CASE (A) Let us for a moment assume that Steve took a clean catch and had his fingers covering the ball at all times. Let us further assume that the TV umpire knows all about camera angles and therefore declares it a CLEAN CATCH. Here is a problem with this decision: CASE (B) What if a catch is taken that on cameras looks very similar to the Steve catch, with the only difference being that the ball actually does touch the ground. Now, since the TV umpire is "educated" to ASSUME such catches are clean, he would declare case B to be a clean catch as well. My point is, umpiring is like being a judge. And a judge MUST NOT take decisions on GUT FEELING. When the cameras can not prove a catch was clean, IT IS NOT OUT. Bumbble is spot on. As an umpire, you can not give it out. Period.

  • on July 20, 2013, 18:16 GMT

    Clarke not taking the new ball made sense. As the article says, their fast men need some rest. No point pushing them so hard now that the test is out of reach. Also Australia don't need England to declare, some quick wickets might have prompted that. They need England to take as much time out of the game as possible just in case there's rain. I thought England should have made them bat like 10-12 overs today, maybe grab a wicket or two. I'm very surprised actually.

    Clarke has gone into damage limitation mode. He has to. Its not just the 3 remaining tests he has to think about, its also the 5 down under.

  • neo-galactico on July 20, 2013, 18:14 GMT

    Once again England get their tactics wrong and once again they'll win and harp on about how victory is validation of their tactics. England are a good team but this conservative, plan-everything-to-latter robotic thing of theirs stops them from moving towards greatness. If Swann is such a great spinner why does he need an already dry wicket to deteriorate even further? Anderson is a great bowler (supposedly), Broad is good and Bres is accurate and great at reverse swing. Oz is poor in batting. So why are they destroying an Oz team that's already outta it? On the other hand, great knock by Rooty, love how he plays the ball under his eyes unlike other T20 players of his generation.

  • whoster on July 20, 2013, 18:10 GMT

    Interesting to hear Shane Warne say it would've been much more attacking of England if they declared after Root got his century. Warne is a legend of the game, and probably talks more sense than any other ex-Test player, but can't agree on this one. There are still TWO DAYS left in this match, and not a drop of rain in sight. England should bat on in the morning and give Root the opportunity of getting 200. The way things are going, nobody would bet on the Aussies batting a whole day, let alone nearly two. The Aussie way was to grind teams into the dirt, and England should bat on in the morning until the lead is 600. For those of us who remember the hidings the great Aussie sides gave England between 1989 and 2002/3 (plus the 06/07 whitewash), this is payback time, so let's make them bowl a few more overs in the morning and demoralise them further. Well played Joe Root - an innings that was a hybrid of his fellow Yorkshiremen, Boycs and Vaughnie!

  • strikeforce2003 on July 20, 2013, 18:09 GMT

    Root roots out Oz's.. What a shambles of an Aussie team we see here.. routed in spirit, zilch technique, no vision, lacking the thirst to apply in batting more, lacklustre plans, Zilch depth in particular with the batting or in the spin department, more undercurrents off-field seen later in appalling performance on field? Where is the Australian team headed post the glorious two decades started by Allan Border onto Steve Waugh. They will now need to chase a probable 600, and seek redemption to their many recent years of under achievements now!! Are there no other Aussie players in their county levels, choosing yet again more of the same faces, hoping against hope for a turn around? no one can plosive blame on their coach or support staff, the entire blame lays with the team, head to toe. Watson needs a shake up..perform now or quit is to be the straight call.

  • Jeppo on July 20, 2013, 18:01 GMT

    On day two, sixteen wickets fell. Today only two batsman lost their wicket. There really is nothing more that can be said regarding the mismatch of both sides.

  • Blade-Runner on July 20, 2013, 17:56 GMT

    England should have declared their innings way earlier. They could easily have wrapped this up in 4 days n have an extra free day. I guess they haven't still done with rubbing salt on the wound quite yet. :))) Its totally one-sided. RIP Aussie Cricket.

  • Cpt.Meanster on July 20, 2013, 17:44 GMT

    @CA-SA1987: Either you must be an Aussie living in SA OR a Saffer living in AUS. But the reality is, Australia are FINISHED as a test team. They might win here and there on occasion but I can't see them become like the legendary teams of the past. As much as I hate test cricket, I can still understand the history behind the Ashes. Technically, England and Australia are the only teams who care about tests. Honestly, test cricket is finished in the near future. Too many inconsistencies associated with the format as a whole. One team dominates most of the time and that is not good for any sport. England have been too good and it's not their fault. It's just that 10 Ashes tests is an OVERKILL. A best of 3 would have been quite good. Test cricket's future will be determined following these tests I guarantee.

  • Kitschiguy on July 20, 2013, 17:43 GMT

    Why do commentators/writers etc keep talking about 'foreshortening of the lens'? There's no such thing. You are talking about perspective compression which happens when a long/telephoto lens is used. The focal length of the lens remains the same.

    Telephoto lenses make the distance between the lens and the subject appear to be less than it really is and this also causes perspective compression, making objects in the scene appear closer together, therefore the distance between the ball and the ground/Smith's hands will appear to be less than it really is making it appear like a catch when it likely isn't.

    So, perspective compression will NOT make good catches appear illegal, it's the other way around. David Lloyd is right, it should not have been give out.

    Commentators/writers/officials/third umpires should learn about the technology and/or basic optical principles before bandying around meaningless phrases like 'lens foreshortening'.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on July 20, 2013, 17:42 GMT

    The fact is that no matter how much certain people may whinge, Cricket Australia must stick with this team for the next test, as it's the only one they have got. As bad as they are, this is the best team they have got, and is full of players that need an extended (5+ years extended in some cases) run in the team, even if they lose again and again. It looks like it's only going to get worse for Australia in this Ashes.

  • YorkshirePudding on July 20, 2013, 17:37 GMT

    @LBain88, the crowd where actually chanting Root,Root,Root, rabidly they werent booing anyone. The mics just couldn't probably didnt pick it up properly due to maybe a couple of thousand people taking part.

  • HomesickAlien on July 20, 2013, 17:37 GMT

    Wonderful knock from Joe Root. Game over tomorrow. Aussies not taking the new ball was as good as waving the white flag.

    By the way - nobody was booing Root - they were saying Rooooooooooooooooot!!

    Well played lad

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on July 20, 2013, 17:36 GMT

    So England absolutely hammer Australia. Again. This time it's the promising Joe Root, who has more technique than the entire Australian top 11 combined. Great innings Joe, bring us more tomorrow.

  • browners76 on July 20, 2013, 17:35 GMT

    Some seriously delusional comments on here. Electro Pap anyone. As for bad luck well that tends to follow the poorer teams. England had the horrendous injury quota on the 94/95 tour, the Michael Slater run out that wasn't in 98/99 and some crucial dropped catches that could have turned matches. But still even in our darkest days we still competed. We won 5 tests and drew 4 I believe in the 90's ashes tests home and away. If the weather stays good then 5 zip looks a good bet.

  • jondavies01 on July 20, 2013, 17:35 GMT

    "Beating them easily inside four days would be far more damaging to morale" @ Pyketts. Given this opposition, will still may not get four full days ;) Go England and congratulations to Joe Root!

  • TropicPleasure on July 20, 2013, 17:34 GMT

    @jmcilhinney, you stated "the replays show quite clearly that that catch did indeed carry to Smith" and in the same breath you added "I can understand the decision but I would also not have complained if it had gone the other way." How can you understand the decision if it was clear that the ball carried? Doesn't your final comment suggest it wasn't "quite clear"? In this case, didn't the third umpire make the right decision?

  • YorkshirePudding on July 20, 2013, 17:33 GMT

    @Puffin, there was a time though when Australia would have looked to try and take wickets, and restrict the lead, it didnt look like clarke was interested from about lunch onwards, and just waiting for the declaration. The fact he didnt take the new ball when due to try and get some wickets was very telling.

  • brittop on July 20, 2013, 17:30 GMT

    LBain88: I thought at first it was booing, but I think it's a cry of "Root", "Root", "Root".

  • welovepakistan on July 20, 2013, 17:30 GMT

    australia rapidly decling.....end of an era!

  • strikeforce2003 on July 20, 2013, 17:29 GMT

    What's on with Aussie cricket..absolute shambles.. No fight..as seen under a Border to Waugh days No depth in team composition, batting, spin dept in particular No hunger to win..defeated in their body language ors it the tool of team politics No patience..in building an innings No clarity in approach tobbowling or foiled sets, captaincy lack-lustre No recent success, seem accustomed to being losers No punch in team selection either by board or captain, floater-like attitude No fear of an Aussie fightback, seen in earlier days worn in baggy greens Unless ofcourse 600 is chased down & they rpwin the 2nd Test, redemption to all that's happened!!

  • Greatest_Game on July 20, 2013, 17:28 GMT

    @ DingDong420 asked "...whats the point of technology if you still get the wrong decision? BCCI I salute you!"

    How do you KNOW that it is the wrong decision? Are you the umpire, out there? Are you the player? If not, how do you KNOW? What PROOF do you have that it is the wrong decision? Are you perhaps using technology to justify that the decision is wrong? Is technology the basis for your knowledge, & your proof? Are you claiming the decision is wrong because of what you have seen on TV, or the internet?

    If so, if you are relying on technology to claim a wrong decision, then the BCCI would disapprove. The BCCI would object. The BCCI would not want to play cricket with you, and would not want your salute. The BCCI does not want decisions to be made using technology.

    You are using computer technology to salute the BCCI for not wanting to use computer technology. Do you not see the inherent conflict? If you truly salute the BCCI, get off line & don't watch TV. No technology allowed

  • ExtraCoverDriver on July 20, 2013, 17:27 GMT

    Firstly, a brilliant batting performance by Joe Root. What a superb talent he is, I'm sure he will do brilliantly in years to come if he remains consistent and keeps focus on playing cricket and not on the celebrity status that he is bound to attain following good performances. Now, more importantly, coming to the other young player, Ashton Agar, his performance left much to be desired, his batting heroics in the first test match apart he is showing signs of inexperience and is only a raw talent and nowhere near the finished product. I think Australia should bring back Lyon for the next match because Agar as a bowler is very mediocre to say the least. While he gets some bounce because of his top-spinners, he is not giving the ball enough revolutions so that it turns square instead of bouncing, because turn is where the spinner earns his bread and butter. He should get back to concentrating on the basics and try to spin the ball more by flighting it and imparting more revolutions.

  • Shan156 on July 20, 2013, 17:27 GMT

    Well played Joe Root, hopefully he will go on to get a double ton tomorrow morning. A few more overs of Steven Smith pies and he should get it easily. Give a target of 600 to the Aussies and roll them over.

  • alexrdavies on July 20, 2013, 17:27 GMT

    Re: Cook and the declaration - declaring at tea would NOT have given England more time.

    Even scoring slowly, Australia would make about 80 runs/session. Therefore England would have had 5 sessions to bowl them out (or they'd win the match).

    This way - as we have a bigger lead - even if they make 90 runs/session, England should still have 6 sessions to bowl them out - i.e. a greater chance of winning! (That's surely the point of tactics?)

    As bonuses, Root - who had come under criticism - has now got runs under his belt and secured his place for the time being, which should mean he can bat with renewed confidence. Also, our bowlers are rested, and theirs must be completely fed up.

    I say it was the right choice. There wasn't even any point taking the last 10 overs of 'gloom' to bowl at their openers, because at this time of year, it's still bright sunshine in England.

  • 2.14istherunrate on July 20, 2013, 17:27 GMT

    In general today went well for England. They extricated themselves from a tricky overnight position, made themselves safe in the morning with Bresnan there while Root mov4ed to 64, moved too slowly in the afternoon, then went berserk in the evening as Root moved past 100 up to 17*, while Bell partied h9is way to 74. Excellent stuff but I thought the declaration could have come tonight with 10 overs to bowl and the possibility to rock Australia with a wicket or two. Anyway England cannot lose, and Root has his berth opening for a while to come. He did bat very well as did Bell who displayed most of favourite shots. I wonder though whether there is not a faster route than this to victory which sides follow more readily as they become surer. When Australia were top under Waugh they seemed far more attacking than previously, and with time I hope England do so. Following on Aus may well have lost by now.

  • dustbowls on July 20, 2013, 17:27 GMT

    There is absolutely no need to prolong the English innings.....

    Aussies r gonna fold up for less than 200.

    I guess what McGrath's prediction would be this time. is it 5-0 as usual.........

  • Shan156 on July 20, 2013, 17:25 GMT

    Those questioning Cook's tactics and accusing him of negativity - care to explain why Clarke was not bowling his main bowlers much after the tea session? It looks like the pitch has flattened out a bit and while there will be some help for the spinners, that's about it. After 16 wickets tumbled on the 2nd day, only 2 has fell on the 3rd. I can't forget SL's effort here in 2006 and SA's in 2008. Why would England want to wear their own bowlers out when we still have another 8 Ashes tests after this one instead of wearing out Australia's? There are still 2 days to go in this test and who is to say that the match won't be over tomorrow. Ensure that the Aussies have no hope of chasing the target and let them go into the defensive. That is pressure too and that will yield wickets too.

  • ADB1 on July 20, 2013, 17:21 GMT

    LBain88: I think the booing was actually England fans saying "Root".

  • Puffin on July 20, 2013, 17:19 GMT

    This is the inevitable result of handing the opposition a 200-run 1st innings advantage - the Aussie bowling isn't that terrible, but that sort of deficit is asking for achievements that will stretch most decent bowling attacks. Australia's batting is plainly quite rotten and their failures simply pile too much pressure onto their bowlers.

    Root has given a lesson in Test batting, well done to him.

  • C.A-SA1987 on July 20, 2013, 17:19 GMT

    As a South African, this makes me very sad (more sad than our ODI loss today).

    The Ashes is, in my opinion, the absolute pinnacle of all sports. It's heritage and legacy is as old as the game of cricket itself. I follow it religiously.

    If Aus are not able to compete, then i fear the worst for future of Test Cricket as a whole. A weak Australia does no good for the future of the pure form.

    Please Australia, please put up a fight. I am begging you.

    You're at Lords, playing in The Ashes, wearing the Baggy Green... SHOW SOME FIGHT!

    Aside, very well done to Root and Bresnan - classy play. Those criticizing the rpo clearly should stick to watching the pyjama cricket.

  • jmcilhinney on July 20, 2013, 17:17 GMT

    Root is lucky to be there after offering a simple chance that should have been taken while still on single figures but, as you must do in such situations, he has really made the opposition pay. Hopefully this is the innings that will give him the confidence to fulfil his potential at the top of the order.

    England continue to get the better of the luck so far this series. I think that the replays show quite clearly that that catch did indeed carry to Smith off Bell but the shot from Smith's right also shows clearly that the ball did push its way through the fingers of his right hand and touch the ground. I guess the question is how much of the ground did it touch and how much is enough to warrant disallowing the catch. The ball can touch the ground even if your fingers are under it completely if they are spread so you have to allow for a little contact. I can understand the decision but I would also not have complained if it had gone the other way.

  • on July 20, 2013, 17:11 GMT

    1)Watson 2)Warner 3)Doolan 4)Smith 5)Clarke 6)Marsh 7)Haddin 8)Siddle 9)Cummins 10)Pattinson 11)Lyon the series is yours

  • LBain88 on July 20, 2013, 17:09 GMT

    Well played to young Joe Root, May I just display my dismay for all those bitter Aussies who dampened his wonderfully well played 100 and further 150 with an undeserved booing.

    For a first hundred plus at Lords, any batsman, English, Australian, South African, Indian or any other test playing nation DESERVES RESPECT.

    Shame on you detractors who cant see the skill, temperament and sheer will of a fine young batsman.

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 17:08 GMT

    There won't be many smiles in the Aussie dressing room. They have just been hammered into the ground. Good work by England, you've given these Aussies a lesson in test cricket

  • Trickstar on July 20, 2013, 17:08 GMT

    @ DingDong420 If you got nothing worth saying, it's better to keep quiet. You look rather bitter mate.

    Anyway absolute massacre by England, it will never ever get boring, nothing better than the Aussies being grounded into the dust.

    What an innings by Root, chance-less today, showed the other lot exactly how to play Test cricket. It will hopefully shut up those rather sad Somerset fans who where wishing his failure, true England fans aren't they. Good inning by Bresnan as well, exactly what was needed from a NWM.

  • YorkshirePudding on July 20, 2013, 17:07 GMT

    @5wombats, Taken apart isnt the phrase. I think clarke gave up in the end, by not taking the new ball he sent a message that he wasnt interested in taking more wickets or wanted to save his fast bowlers because they were gone.

    England to bat on in the morning, for the first hour, to give root a chance at getting a double ton.

  • RandyOZ on July 20, 2013, 17:05 GMT

    Poor umpiring, and dropped catches have ruined this innings for us, no wonder the bowlers are fed up

  • Pyketts on July 20, 2013, 16:52 GMT

    Negative from Cook again.

    I'm sure England will be able to bowl out the brittle Aus batting line up but no wonder the ECB lkes Cook as captain as he extends matches beyond their natural conclussion and minimising the number of refunds required for lost days!

    I don't buy the "grinding Aus into the ground", beating them easily inside four days would be far more damaging to morale.

  • 5wombats on July 20, 2013, 16:50 GMT

    Australia well and truly taken apart. Superb innings from Root seeing England from 3/30 to 5/310. Great stuff lad.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 16:48 GMT

    If Australia bowls like this for the next 3 years, they will be competing with Bangladesh for the 9th rank. I mean it. If you think that day will never come, look where Sri Lanka and New Zealand are currently in Test rankings.

  • DingDong420 on July 20, 2013, 16:47 GMT

    ...whats the point of technology if you still get the wrong decision!

    BCCI I salute you!

  • glance_to_leg on July 20, 2013, 16:46 GMT

    There are plenty of good Australian cricketers, but they need to be nurtured. There is, in fact, a lot of talent among the XI currently playing. But while Clarke is a fine captain in tactical terms, he seems less assured as a judge of character and leader of men. Give the youngsters a chance. I recall a lot of young English rugby players who were humiliated playing Australia in the late 1990s, who went on to win the world cup. Players need confidence and time to grow. Smith and Agar & al will be fine if their spirit is not broken, and they are not ruined by too much Big Bash rubbish.

  • DingDong420 on July 20, 2013, 16:45 GMT

    COOK is a negative captain!

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 16:39 GMT

    Agar finding his slot in the Aussie side as declaration bowler.

  • GopShal on July 20, 2013, 16:36 GMT

    No other way. Clarke has to swallow his ego and SOS Katich. Need some solid player up in the top order considering Clarke is also not in an great form.

  • YorkshirePudding on July 20, 2013, 16:35 GMT

    Well Played to Root, at least this should shut up the doubters and naysayers.

    May this be the first of many 100's in the Ashes.

  • Jagdish3k on July 20, 2013, 16:31 GMT

    AUSTRALIA have forgotten how to bat in test matches. The bowlers are still ok. But pathetic top & middle order batting is making it no contest.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 16:29 GMT

    Oh dear Lord, England is now reverse sweeping Aussie bowlers, in a Test match .... If this was a movie, I would have Shane Warne walk right out of that commentary box, replace the tie with the Aussie Baggy, pitch one up there 2 feet outside leg in the rough, and smack the bail off, sleeping on that off stump since Trott's misadventure yesterday.

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 16:29 GMT

    Surely Smith has never had a bunny before. And now he has Bell.

  • glen1 on July 20, 2013, 16:19 GMT

    Is it necessary to play the other remaining tests? Ian Chappell has pointed out several times that there is no budding talent coming up through the Australian System, unlike India, and therefore rebuilding will only be a dream. There may never be a replacement possible for Ponting, Hussey, and Clark and Australia will be delegated to the lower heap. Tests are at most viable only for the top four teams. There is lot more possible in one-day cricket. Is Australian Cricket heading the way of Australian Tennis ??

  • vinodbhatia on July 20, 2013, 16:08 GMT

    Eng showing Aus the way test cricket is played. Its about patience and facing the deliveries and not entertainment as in limited overs games. If wearing the baggy green or the Lord's venue or the Ashes urnand the history involved cant motivate the Aus current team to show what they stand for and what their greats had achieved in the past then I don't know what will motivate them. Well done Eng though you have not been tested at all but really pathetic opposition performance.

  • on July 20, 2013, 16:07 GMT

    prolongation of torture and the inevitable

  • on July 20, 2013, 15:54 GMT

    this Aussie side has no batsman capable of playing a long test innings barring their captain. in first test also the match became interning due to 10th wicket partnerships. Although Agar has battled well so far, as a test class spinner he is far below average

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 15:53 GMT

    Let us be honest, Gilly, Ponting, Warne had another 2-4 years of cricket left in them. Hussey and Katich had another 5 years at least.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 15:48 GMT

    I hate to say this but for his 98, Ashton would not have made it to the second test. Nathan might be a better choice for the rest of the series. Ashton is struggling with his line. He also needs more variety. It is a tough life being a spinner, let alone a leg spinner. With huge footmarks to exploit, Ashwin, Ajmal, Warne and even Ravindra Jadeja would have ripped apart the batting line up.

  • Beertjie on July 20, 2013, 15:45 GMT

    @lankymanky on (July 20, 2013, 14:12 GMT), agree about the pathetic umpiring souring the games. England's best result v Aus was 5-1 during the Packer series of 78-79. Certainly that was a 2nd XI, but this lot looks like a 2nd XI compared to the team of 7 years ago. Like Pakistan whose batting is poor, Aus cannot hope to win though their bowlers alone. CA ought to shelve their Big Bash if they are serious about regaining #1 or the Ashes. As Lehman says no one is playing the usual long innings. Partly this was because of the pitches which themselves were affected by changing climatic conditions. But when you've identified unchangeable factors, you still need to address factors within the system that hinder batters playing longer innings.

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 15:42 GMT

    Make it a daddy, Joe. Wonder if he will use his feet to the spinners at any point. Doesn't really seem to be his method.

  • SirViv1973 on July 20, 2013, 15:38 GMT

    @buvesch buch, nothing wrong with wot eng have done, as I expected them 2 they r now pushing on after tea. I'm expecting a lead of around 500 by stumps & unless aus r able 2 bowl eng out they will probably come back 4 45 mins - an hour tomorrow & have a lead of over 550 by the time aus bat. There is no prospect of anything other than eng win here.

  • electric_loco_WAP4 on July 20, 2013, 15:32 GMT

    Root riding his luck and for scoring 100 . But Aus bowlers were well below full steam and bowling within them. If anywhere near their best Root will be joining Cook in his struggles past 1-digit figs.Useful knock but you think he had it easy facing mostly the spinners. Aus bowlers were a little bit stiff after the 1st test in b2b tests . Imagine if Mitch Jonson in the form he is in and hurling 95 mph bolts the Eng inngs will barely be 100 in 2nd inngs with Mitch taking 7/8 of them himself. With Johnson in 3rd test the 4 man Aus attack will be a fearsome and delight for fast bowling connoisseurs ! vice versa for Eng -:)

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 15:25 GMT

    Agar is no test spinner. Having to bowl around the wicket. He must be trying to bore England out.

  • AUSSIESFAN on July 20, 2013, 15:24 GMT

    i am big aussies fan.one of the worst worst performance by aussies , and clarke captian is not gud, when ball is turning why cant he give ball to smith and bowl himself where both has wicket taking ability, atleast clarke learn from england captian , one of the worst and worst test matches i have ever seen , agar bowling more than 20 plus with out taking wickets and his length and turn is more predictable, and even fast bowers not up to mark always bowling to wicket full , fast bowlers learn from craig mc dermott stragegic bowling full and good lenght with swing in n out , learn from james anderson and broad how well they are bowling. when craig mc dermott was a bowling coach how many test matches u won and bowling discipline, now one of the worst worst, please improve. i cant see u keeping on loosing n defeated, improve ur game plan how to take wicket , improve ur bowling techniques n batting techniques....

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 15:20 GMT

    England will get 500 lead and put Australia in tomorrow lunch. Very attacking fields with lots of men around the bat.

  • cheguramana on July 20, 2013, 15:16 GMT

    I think Eng Are doing just fine, with their calm and slow approach. There's no rush! They can take lead to over 500 and crush Aus. I think these wounds wl fester in Aussie minds for a long time to come. Am afraid their come back to world dominance is very far off now.

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

    @USA_Res - this happens quite often with low slip catches. It was a catch, Steve Smith had every right to claim it, and we'll leave it at that. Gower and Warne, both experienced campaigners, knew the score, but it's hardly a crucial decision - forget about it and get on with the game, just don't cast any aspersions the way of Smith. Root is 97 at tea and has really impressed me with this innings - he and Cook at the helm could form a formidable partnership for ENG in the future. Technique wise he is very sound, just wish he was playing for OZ! The OZ bowlers have bowled well today, they haven't served up rubbish but the ENG batsmen have held their nerve and played each ball on its merits. I doubt the same can be said of OZ after our 2nd innings - I reckon the pitch will suddenly look like a minefield, with the all too familiar procession of OZ top order batsmen wandering off with a bemused expression planted on their mugs after playing across the line and with reckless abandon.

  • on July 20, 2013, 14:50 GMT

    I think Cook should have asked Aus for follow on,,,, Now pitch is smooth for batting,, though England going with 2 RPO,, which is stupid,,,,,,, I think either Aus will won or it will be draw test

  • Shekahr_123 on July 20, 2013, 14:48 GMT

    Looking at the way both sides are batting it seems Aussies are batting on Mars.!!! When they bat , batting looks almost impossible.After 2 good starts of 84/42 the Aussies couldn't score enough runs. Right from position 1 to 6 , they are uncertain , no one looks good to stand for more than an hour, its better to see Warner who at least goes after bowling and SOMETIMES scores big runs. Poor batting , ego , wrong use of DRS , poor spin and seam bowling. This team doesn't even match the under 19 performance. Clarke's captaincy is also in check after loosing 5 matches in rows and wonder it will be stretched to 9 straight losses.

  • coldcoffee123 on July 20, 2013, 14:35 GMT

    Can't fathom this Eng 2 rpo approach, on this placid pitch. As Warne said, the ruthless Aussie team of the last decade would have scored at 5 rpo and killed the opposition. Some ordinary batting on display. I wonder what happened to all the fast bouncy pitches of the world? I guess only SA has those kind of pitches left. Seeing the timid batting on display, I think more than 90% of the batsmen (from both teams) would hardly be able to put a bat to a ball in SA conditions.

  • on July 20, 2013, 14:34 GMT

    The memories of 2009 Ashes series Lords test are large looming in my head. I miss Freddie a lot. Go on England and get the Aussies n win the Lords test. Love you England.

  • Englishmanabroad on July 20, 2013, 14:21 GMT

    What is disgraceful is commentators condemning umpires for not overturning decisions without evidence (re. chance given by Bell).

    If the ball makes any contact with the ground before it is brought under control, then it is not a catch. Watching the side on view, it looked pretty clear to me that the ball was effectively trapped 40% left hand, 40% right hand, 20% ground.

    In any case it was not clear that the ball DID NOT touch the ground, therefore the call on the field stands.

  • lankymanky on July 20, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    England fan but I am become exasperated by the number of bad decisions.

    That was a fair catch by Steve Smith and it is as if the 3rd umpire was swayed by the crowd reaction. Utterly stupid use of technology which is common for 3rd umpires with those kind of catches and it has been proved a few times than the 3rd umpire is in a much worse position to decide on these than the on field umpire. But even then the pictures showed it went straight in.

    The umpires are ruining this ashes series more than usual and I am utterly fed up of it.

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 13:54 GMT

    Clark is not confident with the spinning options, you would have thought they would have been on more by now. Swann would have been bowling all day if England were in the field

  • BradmanBestEver on July 20, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    maddy20 - actually I am refreshed with this temporary low level of performance by Australia. It became so booooooooring watching year in, year out the Aussies flog the living suitcase out of the opposition.

    A country does not provide the best batsman of all time, the best wicketkeeper-batsman of all time, the best fast bowler of all time and the best spin bowler of all time without being a strong cricketing nation - so the Aussies will be back - you can bet your money on that.

    Make hay while the sun shines non-aussie supporters!

  • maddy20 on July 20, 2013, 13:02 GMT

    Aus has been going through the phase which England was in during the 90's and India was in(once their big three were hopelessly out of form). Their rotation policy has meant that no bowler got the chance to build on any success they have had. The future of Aus looks really bleak. There's a lesson to be learned for Aus fans making fun of other teams when they were down. Don't mock teams when they are down, if you don't want to get mocked when you get humiliated. England look good to build a lead of 500. Aus will lose by around 300 runs(or around 200 if their tail wags again). 5-0 whitewash looks very certain now. England will settle their score with Aus(reg 2007 5-0 whitewash in Aus)

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 12:43 GMT

    Despite bowling on 2 dry turners, Agar's bowling average now exceeds that of Xavier Doherty.

  • ADB1 on July 20, 2013, 12:37 GMT

    Great to see Bressie doing well in the first session. How Haddin must be regretting that miss off Root last night.

  • on July 20, 2013, 12:33 GMT

    night watchman at no.5 bresanan is really batting like top order batsman giving enough and much needed support to root/England.keep it up boys for some more time time.that will vanish the remaining hopes of ausi boys of making face saving exhibition in this 2 nd test.better luck boys for the remaining time in this match.

  • on July 20, 2013, 12:31 GMT

    Great session just what England needed now push on get another 200+ today and if possible bat on into the 4th morning. Australia are lucky Cook is out of form, Trott was unlucky and Pietersen was suicidal or there would have been a much bigger problem. The fact that England won the 1st test and are likely gonna win this test without playing all that well just shows what a sorry state Australia are since their greatest players have retired...not even Siddle and Clarke can get them out of this mess unless they get 4 or 5 wickets in the first hour after lunch

  • disco_bob on July 20, 2013, 12:28 GMT

    I must admit that this series has taken on some sort of cosmic karmic proportions, maybe for the decades of humiliation we heaped on England or for other more obscure reasons. Whatever it is, the pain is so great that it has transcended into a sort of chimeric dreamlike haze. What do we do? Do we try to keep Root and Bresnan in until England declare, or do we knock ourselves out trying to dismiss them and bring Bell to the crease. Oh the pain, the pain...

  • hhillbumper on July 20, 2013, 12:21 GMT

    the greatest bowling attack ever being held up by a kid and a bloke with a didgy elbow. Yep that 5-0 white wash we were promised by the Aussie press looks like it is still on.

  • hhillbumper on July 20, 2013, 12:21 GMT

    the greatest bowling attack ever being held up by a kid and a bloke with a didgy elbow. Yep that 5-0 white wash we were promised by the Aussie press looks like it is still on.

  • disco_bob on July 20, 2013, 12:28 GMT

    I must admit that this series has taken on some sort of cosmic karmic proportions, maybe for the decades of humiliation we heaped on England or for other more obscure reasons. Whatever it is, the pain is so great that it has transcended into a sort of chimeric dreamlike haze. What do we do? Do we try to keep Root and Bresnan in until England declare, or do we knock ourselves out trying to dismiss them and bring Bell to the crease. Oh the pain, the pain...

  • on July 20, 2013, 12:31 GMT

    Great session just what England needed now push on get another 200+ today and if possible bat on into the 4th morning. Australia are lucky Cook is out of form, Trott was unlucky and Pietersen was suicidal or there would have been a much bigger problem. The fact that England won the 1st test and are likely gonna win this test without playing all that well just shows what a sorry state Australia are since their greatest players have retired...not even Siddle and Clarke can get them out of this mess unless they get 4 or 5 wickets in the first hour after lunch

  • on July 20, 2013, 12:33 GMT

    night watchman at no.5 bresanan is really batting like top order batsman giving enough and much needed support to root/England.keep it up boys for some more time time.that will vanish the remaining hopes of ausi boys of making face saving exhibition in this 2 nd test.better luck boys for the remaining time in this match.

  • ADB1 on July 20, 2013, 12:37 GMT

    Great to see Bressie doing well in the first session. How Haddin must be regretting that miss off Root last night.

  • 2MikeGattings on July 20, 2013, 12:43 GMT

    Despite bowling on 2 dry turners, Agar's bowling average now exceeds that of Xavier Doherty.

  • maddy20 on July 20, 2013, 13:02 GMT

    Aus has been going through the phase which England was in during the 90's and India was in(once their big three were hopelessly out of form). Their rotation policy has meant that no bowler got the chance to build on any success they have had. The future of Aus looks really bleak. There's a lesson to be learned for Aus fans making fun of other teams when they were down. Don't mock teams when they are down, if you don't want to get mocked when you get humiliated. England look good to build a lead of 500. Aus will lose by around 300 runs(or around 200 if their tail wags again). 5-0 whitewash looks very certain now. England will settle their score with Aus(reg 2007 5-0 whitewash in Aus)

  • BradmanBestEver on July 20, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    maddy20 - actually I am refreshed with this temporary low level of performance by Australia. It became so booooooooring watching year in, year out the Aussies flog the living suitcase out of the opposition.

    A country does not provide the best batsman of all time, the best wicketkeeper-batsman of all time, the best fast bowler of all time and the best spin bowler of all time without being a strong cricketing nation - so the Aussies will be back - you can bet your money on that.

    Make hay while the sun shines non-aussie supporters!

  • Iddo555 on July 20, 2013, 13:54 GMT

    Clark is not confident with the spinning options, you would have thought they would have been on more by now. Swann would have been bowling all day if England were in the field

  • lankymanky on July 20, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    England fan but I am become exasperated by the number of bad decisions.

    That was a fair catch by Steve Smith and it is as if the 3rd umpire was swayed by the crowd reaction. Utterly stupid use of technology which is common for 3rd umpires with those kind of catches and it has been proved a few times than the 3rd umpire is in a much worse position to decide on these than the on field umpire. But even then the pictures showed it went straight in.

    The umpires are ruining this ashes series more than usual and I am utterly fed up of it.