England v Australia, 3rd Investec Test, Old Trafford, 4th day August 4, 2013

Australia's Pratt moment

Plays of the day from the fourth day at Old Trafford

Gary Pratt of the day
It wouldn't be an Ashes series without a run-out from a sub fielder. And this one even featured the Australia captain, just like Gary Pratt's effort against Ricky Ponting at Trent Bridge in 2005. Only this time, it was Michael Clarke's partner, Steven Smith, who was the victim. Smith steered a delivery from James Anderson down to third man and positively Usain Bolted through for the first run while Clarke strolled. Smith was already two-thirds down the pitch for a second run - which was clearly there - when he realised Clarke wasn't coming. A relay throw from Matt Prior found Smith short of his ground and the man who had hurled the ball in from third man was Tom Craddock, the Essex legspinner, who was on the field for Kevin Pietersen. It was a brief and eventful spell on the ground; Pietersen jogged back on as Smith trudged off.

Clash of the day
David Warner bolted out on the field, perhaps hoping to be out in the middle before the crowd realised it was him. He faced 57 balls. None of those were delivered by Joe Root. Root didn't even warm up near him. They might have shared the same field, but that was about as close as it got. But the link between them couldn't be broken that easily. A short ball from Tim Bresnan was pulled out to deep square leg. As it travelled for those fleeting moments, you could hear people start to say "Is that Root?" followed by the catch, and then "That is Root!" Then laughter.

Tune of the day
Whatever Warner achieves in his career, it seems he will always be remembered for punching Root in a bar in Birmingham. Certainly the English crowd will never let him forget it. Here Billy Cooper, the Barmy Army trumpeter making his first appearance of the summer at this Test having been forbidden from playing in the first two games, played the theme from Rocky when Warner came out to bat in Australia's second innings.

Boundary of the day
A pleasing stroke from Stuart Broad in the eighth over of the day, a back-foot drive through cover off the bowling of Ryan Harris, drew prolonged applause from another full-house crowd of 25,000 at Old Trafford. But the applause was not just for a nicely timed stroke from a man who seems to be rediscovering some form with the bat. It was because it was the stroke that ensured England had averted the follow-on and therefore significantly reduced Australia's chances of winning this game.

Walk of the day
After the mountain of criticism Broad attracted for failing to walk after that edge at Trent Bridge, it was particularly noticeable that he did not wait for the umpire's decision here. Prodding forward to a nice delivery from Nathan Lyon that turned enough to brush the edge of the bat, it was a far less obvious nick than the one Broad survived in Nottingham, suggesting he may have reflected on events that day and decided to change his approach. Equally, it may be he decided that, with the follow-on already averted, the circumstances of the match made such a move a canny piece of PR. Graeme Swann also walked a few minutes later in similar circumstances.

Review of the day
Broad was briefly in the umpires' good books when he walked but later in the day he and the officials weren't seeing eye to eye. Broad was convinced he had Warner caught behind trying to hook a bouncer, but Tony Hill disagreed. England reviewed the call and there was no mark on Hot Spot and no evidence that Warner had tickled the ball, and the decision stood. But England were convinced Warner was out, and Broad and James Anderson talked at length to Hill after the decision came down from the third official. Later, Snicko suggested Warner might have hit the ball after all, but there was no way on the evidence available at the time Kumar Dharmasena could have overruled Hill.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ed on August 5, 2013, 10:29 GMT

    @Tamperbay: You talk about England's conservatism & negativism in your comment, but also complain about one of their most successful innovations (the specialist fielding substitute). You criticise England for being defensive & traditional, but also for going out on a limb and doing something decidedly modern and attacking. That simply doesn't tally. If you want to be successful, you have to be ruthless (see Australia's success in the 90s/early 2000s). That is what England are doing now. A draw secures the Ashes, going for the win risks a loss that would let Australia back into the series. Short run negativity secures the long term goal. Cricket isn't a game where you can always attack. Sometimes you have to absorb some pressure. Oh, and if the ICC ban using a sub who isn't the 12th man, England will just name a specialist fielder as 12th man

  • Andrew on August 5, 2013, 10:00 GMT

    It is apparent that players with a history of injuries are the ones who take advantage of the being able to leave the field so I can see why they do it. It is also reasonable that a 12th Man should be able to leave a match to get a game elsewhere otherwise perennial 12th Men like Finn, Onions or Tremlett would lose out on valuable match practice. Considering how so much of the game is now weighted in the batsman's favour I would suggest that maybe it should be perfectly OK for players to leave the field. I seem to recall Dennis Lillee used to do it 'back in the good old days'.

  • k on August 5, 2013, 7:53 GMT

    Those who saw the spot on hotspot...please get a good glasses mate..guess..you guys r overseeing things now

  • Rahul on August 5, 2013, 6:51 GMT

    I agree totally with "tamperbay". It is annoying to say the least seeing English bowlers taking leisure breaks between spells replaced by players not in the squad. ICC needs to wake up and rein in the practice. It is ridiculous to see the 12th man carrying the drinks and someone who is not in the squad replacing as a substitute fielder. ICC has taken an appreciable decision by not allowing the runners any more to the batsmen.It is time to be equally hard on the fielding side and may be let them field with 10 men while the bowlers are off the field. We all have seen what drama it creates on the football field when someone is red carded. These are International athletes and this is test cricket. You are expected to show grit, stamina and determination and you are supposed to be supremely fit to play the game at this level. Lets not make any undue favors here to anybody.

  • Leon on August 4, 2013, 23:34 GMT

    In the previous test Oz had no reviews left - so leave it to the umpire - as he should. This time they had two. He knew he hit it and did not bother wasting time knowing that a review would show it even if the umpire gave it not out. I do not see anything mystical about Broad's 'change of heart'

  • Aditya on August 4, 2013, 23:15 GMT

    "Equally, it may be he decided that, with the follow-on already averted, the circumstances of the match made such a move a canny piece of PR. Graeme Swann also walked a few minutes later in similar circumstances." Rocky Warner rocks! Go punch Root through the covers mate!

  • Dummy4 on August 4, 2013, 23:05 GMT

    Incorrect use to of technology. If you want to get decisions right from the howlers, use hotspot, the stump audio and the snicko. Have all these 3 and you won't go wrong. If there is a sound but no hotspot, snicko or audio then the DRS is useless.

  • David on August 4, 2013, 22:36 GMT

    Snicko hardly gave conclusive evidence of an edge. A noise can be caused by the air "pop" of two objects passing very fast and close to each other in opposite direections without actually touching. With no visible deviation on the ball or change in its rotation on super slo-mo, you have to assume that there wasn't an edge, despite snicko. I suspect it's for reasons like this that snicko isn't part of the DRS suite of resources.

    What we need is not just the fact of a noise, but for someone to come up with a frequency profile of the sound of bat on ball, so that it can be differentiated from other possible causes of the snicko spike.

  • John on August 4, 2013, 22:30 GMT

    Garry Pratt was mentioned in commentary too. I took the Pratt issue seriously at the time and still do. Ponting was lambasted over it so I will probably be too. There is no doubt that in 2005 and in this series that England makes excessive use of substitutes and regularly takes fast bowlers off for rub-downs and warm-ups. This should be monitored and policed. They should be on the filed unless injured or needing a legitimate toilet break, etc. All teams do it but England seems to be more excessive than others. @John Caulfield rightly states that for the Ponting run-out Pratt was out there for a legitimate reason. BUT this brings the second problem with Pratt. A sub is usually supposed to be the ACTUAL 12th man (which Pratt never was) or might be a young local up and comer given a thrill and an experience. Pratt was a brilliant fielder who was dragged around with the team for the 2005 series specifically as a fielding substitute - an unfair advantage that should not have been allowed!