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Plays of the day from the second day of the Chester-le-Street Test
George Dobell and Brydon Coverdale at Chester-le-Street
August 10, 2013
Wise calls of the day
Twice Alastair Cook was pressed by his bowlers to ask for lbw reviews that they were convinced were out. Twice Cook declined to give in to them - wisely. On the first occasion, Shane Watson lunged forward to defend off Stuart Broad, and the bowler seemed certain the ball had flicked the pad on the way through to the bat. Replays showed it was a perfect forward defence with no hint of pad. Smiles went through the England cordon when the big screen revealed Broad's misjudgement. Later, Jonathan Trott rapped Chris Rogers on the pads with his part-time medium offerings and wanted a review. You didn't have to be a trained lip-reader to understand Trott's words to Cook: "Definitely pitched in line." Replays showed the ball had pitched well outside leg.
Decision of the day
It says much about umpire Tony Hill's decision-making in this series that he was at the centre of yet more DRS intrigue. Here Hill gave Rogers out to a catch behind the wicket off the bowling of Broad when the batsman was on 20 only for Rogers to utilise a review. That review showed that Rogers had not hit the ball but suggested that the ball would have hit the stumps in the margin of 'umpire's call'. As a result England celebrated, thinking that the 'umpire's call' verdict covered any appeal off the delivery and not specifically the decision about the catch. But Aleem Dar, the other on-field umpire, stepped in to clarify that Rogers should be given not out as Hill's original decision had not applied to an lbw appeal. It was a circuitous route to making the correct decision.
Drop of the day
Maybe it was fitting that Rogers should bring up his half-century with an edge to slip that was dropped and ran away for a single. Rogers' innings, much like Cook's the day before, had been torturous. But despite playing and missing often, Roger continued to battle and provided just the contribution Australia required to keep them in the game. The edge, off the bowling of the deserving Broad, was dropped by Graeme Swann, diving low to his right and coming close to taking an outstanding catch at second slip. But, had Swann left the ball, it may well have carried to Cook at first slip and would have reduced Australia to 89 for 5.
Tune of the day
It was always likely that Watson would be haunted by memories of his first visit to Durham and Lumley Castle, in particular. In 2005, Watson was so perturbed by what he took to be a ghost in the room of his hotel in the castle that he asked to move rooms. He also reportedly spent one night sleeping on the floor of Brett Lee's room. The England supporters will never let him forget it so, when Watson came out to bat, Billy Cooper, the Barmy Army trumpeter, played the theme from the film Ghostbusters.
Miss of the day
As Tim Bresnan tormented Watson with the moving ball, a weird subplot almost threatened to take the biggest star, DRS, off the back pages. Watson had wafted at a ball he was only going to edge and, amid the excitement, oohs and aahs, he tried to pretend it was business as usual and walked down the wicket to do some gardening. Then Matt Prior rolled the ball at the stumps, with Watson still out of his ground as it rolled past. Prior then talked to umpire Hill, perhaps asking if the ball had hit the stumps, would it have been out. Watson wandered slowly back into his ground.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: George Dobell
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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