England v Australia, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's, 4th day July 21, 2013

Broad hits the badge

George Dobell, Dan Brettig and Jarrod Kimber
ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the fourth day at Lord's

Drop of the day

Players with great debut seasons often have second season blues when the opposition work them out and they struggle to adapt. Ashton Agar has sped that up, and his second Test is already the blues. In this Test he was run out by his partner, took no wickets, and had to hobble around the field with a hip injury. The only moment he could pull it back was an easy caught and bowled opportunity that he didn't see. It bounced off his chest. As if in disgust, but more because of trying to keep a batsman at one end, all the fielders walked to the boundary. Ashton still smiled. He only stopped smiling when Tony Hill refused to believe in Hot Spot.

Badge hit of the day

"Hey Aussies, want a representation of what we are doing to you" is not what Stuart Broad said when he was bouncing Michael Clarke. But by bowling a bouncer and bouncing of the badge of Clarke's helmet, that is exactly what he did. Clarke plays short pitch bowling fine when his back is okay. When his back is not working, he's a human piñata. He looked much like the statue of him that may never be built if Australia keep playing this way.

Ominous moment of the day

It probably looked worse than it was. Three balls after playing and missing at a delivery that spun prodigiously out of the footmarks and beat the outside edge, Chris Rogers left one from Graeme Swann that went straight on with the arm and hit off stump. It was a dismissal that encapsulated the problems of a left-hander trying to play Swann on a worn, dry wicket offering him copious assistance: any stroke was fraught with danger, but Swann's drift and natural variation made leaving the ball dangerous. Roger's dismissal was also yet another example of Swann striking in his first over.

Let off of the day

Had Matt Prior been able to complete the stumping opportunity he had against Clarke when he had scored just 2, Australia would have been 38 for 4 and in danger of imploding without meaningful resistance. Swann, enticing Clarke down the pitch with a well-flighted delivery that dipped sharply and defeated the batsman, must have thought he had his man but Prior fumbled the chance and allowed the ball to bounce off his legs and Clarke to regain his ground. He went on to score 51 and add 98 for the fourth wicket with Usman Khawaja. It made no difference to the end result, of course, but it did prevent a degree of humiliation.

Non-referral of the day

As if working to a Police Academy script, Shane Watson made a handsome start before clumping his front pad down the wicket and allowing the ever-so-accurate James Anderson to hit it with a ball headed for the stumps. England's appeal was vociferous and the umpire Marais Erasmus' finger was raised. As ever, Watson wandered down the pitch and pondered whether or not to review. To widespread amusement, he declined, continuing his walk past the non-striker Rogers and Erasmus to the Lord's pavilion.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Cyril on July 22, 2013, 12:22 GMT

    Only a brief reference to Hot-Spot in the article. One thing I've noticed this summer is how much smaller the hot-spots have been on the bat than they were last year. I'm no fan of technology in cricket, but it seems to have obvious issues. When Sky first used it, I think in England vs India, it didn't detect edges from the Indian batters who had stickers on the edge of the bat. Now even clearly visible edges are only showing up as tiny specks and some not at all. It is clear that the technology is not reliable. Remember viewers only see a tiny percentage of deliveries with the hot-spot on, we have no idea of how many errors it makes.

    As for DRS itself, if a batsmen had failed as often in a Test series he would be dropped for the next.

  • Neil on July 22, 2013, 9:11 GMT

    @Jim Garner. yes, they came within 14 runs. but when Australia have to rely on No.11 holding things together and dragging them close to a result, it doens't bode well. To my mind Australia just don't have enough quality within the team to sustain a high enough level to beat England over 5 days of cricket. (Of course they'll have their moments, but can they win 3 or 4 sessions out of 5 ?)

  • Phani on July 22, 2013, 6:05 GMT

    Guys,i am surprised that no one is speaking of Haddin here...his approach behing the stumps is simply vulnerable...if i am correct, Haddin let through a straight forward catch ( ask gilly) of Root when he is on single digits...thats a disaster & more aweful is his suggestions on when to use DRS..no cricketing mind at all....catches wins you matches, proved viceversa also holds good....

  • John on July 22, 2013, 1:17 GMT

    @R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (July 21, 2013, 19:14 GMT), I thought early on that Prior was in for an interesting day and that was the case. He made a number of good takes over the course of the innings but unfortunately that missed stumping wasn't one of them. You could see him move quite a way to his left just beforehand so he obviously though the ball was going to follow pretty much the same path that Clarke did. Could have been an expensive miss in another game and it may have cost Swann a 10-wicket haul, but I doubt that anyone holds it against him.

  • John on July 22, 2013, 1:13 GMT

    @Jim Garner on (July 21, 2013, 19:55 GMT), most people are saying what a dreadful batting lineup those Aussies have and they're pretty much right. It was the bowlers who got Australia so close in the first game with both ball and bat. The England batting was improved in this game and you saw the result. The bowlers will have to perform miracles to avoid a whitewash unless the batting improves markedly. You'd expect Clarke at least to make a big score or two before the series is out but then you'd expect Cook, Trott and KP to put a few together amongst them as well.

  • John on July 22, 2013, 1:05 GMT

    @CapitalMarkets on (July 21, 2013, 20:43 GMT), I'm guessing that Agar dropping Prior was probably due to the fact that the ball came off the bat and straight back at his eyes, meaning that it was a little difficult to judge exactly how quickly the ball was coming. He probably still should have caught it; no, he definitely still should have caught it, but there's a little mitigation there. I think that it's funny that cricketers do things like make the expression Agar did so that everyone was aware that he didn't see the ball properly rather than just dropped it cold.

  • Dummy4 on July 21, 2013, 23:24 GMT

    Time for Australia to get Simon Katich back to open the batting for the next three Tests. Perhaps they should also make a call for Mike Hussey and Ricky Ponting. These are all batsmen with world class batting technique and they should still be in the game. A good example of this is Misbah for Pakistan at age 39.

  • Vatsal on July 21, 2013, 21:13 GMT

    As a hardcore indian fan who has recently moved to melbourne and is thus backing AUssie team, this sight was all too familiar and heartbreaking.

  • Rod on July 21, 2013, 20:43 GMT

    England are still dropping catches and still winning without more than two of their big five batsmen performing well. Goodness knows what will happen if Prior and Cook start scoring. They both have yet to fire in the series, but it really hasn't mattered. Australia should get Watson down to six as soon as possible by bringing back Kaitich. Broad was unlucky today and the third umpire still needs to sharpen up. I'm so frustrated with Watson, but at least he kept walking today. I thought Ashton Agar was unlucky not to get the benefit of the doubt today and I think so did he, but my dead grandmother could have caught the chance Prior gave him. Lyon will come back and I don't think there's enough room in the Australian side for Agar and Smith.

  • G on July 21, 2013, 20:31 GMT

    the side England sent to australia wasn't too bad in 2007, and got absolutely butchered in the end

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