|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Shop||Mobile|
ESPNcricinfo presents the plays of the day from the first day at The Oval
George Dobell and Brydon Coverdale at The Oval
August 21, 2013
Blow of the day 1
Stuart Broad troubled Michael Clarke with bouncers but it was Shane Watson who suffered the most painful blow during Broad's challenging post-lunch spell. Watson initially wanted to hook the ball but turned away when it became apparent the pace was too much, and as a result copped a fearsome blow on the left side of his neck, just below the helmet. Watson whipped his helmet off and kneeled on the ground with his head down, clearly in significant pain. After some attention from the team physio Alex Kountouris and doctor Peter Brukner, Watson was able to bat on, though with what appeared to be some pain-killing medication.
Spin of the day
The selection of Simon Kerrigan alongside Graeme Swann meant England included two specialist spinners in their side for the first time in a home Test since the Cardiff 2009. On that occasion Monty Panesar was Swann's partner. The previous time that England had included two specialist spinners in an Oval Test was in 1996, when Ian Salisbury and Robert Croft claimed combined match figures of 3 for 141 against Pakistan.
Drop of the day
Watson had scored 104 when he came half forward to a delivery from James Anderson that bounced a little more than anticipated and took the edge of his bat. But Alastair Cook, a much improved slip fielder in recent months, was unable to cling on to the relatively straightforward chance and Watson was able to progress to his highest Test score and build his side a formidable platform.
Blow of the day 2
Michael Clarke has been unsettled by Stuart Broad throughout the series. Perhaps as a result of his back injury, he has struggled to play the short ball, in particular, and as a result has sometimes appeared hesitant to come forward as quickly as he might have done in the past. Here he was fortunate to survive a bounce when he had scored just 1. Taking his eye off the ball, flinching and holding the bat up in front of his face, he was lucky to see the ball hit the handle and fall just out of the reach of Ian Bell at short-leg. It was another false shot for such an accomplished batsman and the reflection of some well-directed pace bowling from Broad.
Stage fright of the day
Kerrigan endured a chastening start to his Test career. With Watson in fine form and determined to attack, Kerrigan conceded six boundaries in his opening two overs including a second over that cost 18. Suffering painfully from nerves and a lack of confidence, the nadir of Kerrigan's opening day came when he produced a horrid, head-high full toss that was pulled to the boundary with dismissive contempt by Steve Smith.
|Comments have now been closed for this article