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Story Behind Enemy Lines - An Ashes Cricket Story

Discussion in 'Ashes Cricket' started by Rumple43, Mar 18, 2019.

  1. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
    Survival Games Finalist
    Joined:
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    Domestic Team:
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    Ashes 2019 - 14 AUGUST 2019

    2019 Ashes, 2nd Test - Lords, London.

    Lunch Day 1

    England v Australia, Australia lead 1-0

    England 1st innings - 32-4, 13.0 overs, J.Denly 9, M.Starc 7-2-11-2

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    Jonathan Agnew: “Well you hate to be the one to say it, but that was a fairly miserable 50 or so minutes for England. We’ve reached the lunch break here on Day 1 at Lords and England are already reeling after the loss of 4 wickets in pretty quick time. I’ve got two Englishmen with me who look about as glum as the London skyline did when we got to the ground this morning, Geoffrey Boycott and Phil Tufnell.”

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    Geoffrey Boycott: "There's something fundamentally wrong with this England side. You can't stand there Jonathan and tell me these are the best 11 players we have in this country, I wouldn't believe you. They're basic errors. And what's worse, we keep coming back to them time and again. It sounds like I'm picking on him, but Starc has got Denly again. That foot is planted on middle stump and he can't adjust to the ball as it moves. No, not good. They're going to get another hiding here if they're not careful."

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    Phil Tufnell: “And let’s not forget that that it could have been even worse! Very close to an LBW before lunch for Dawid Malan, but even though Australia reviewed it, it was a cracker of a decision from the umpire who saw the little tickle off the inside edge. England have been poor, but Starc and Hazelwood have got the most out of this pitch and the new ball.”

    JA: "It was only a short session but there was plenty in it. Let's take a look back at play so far this morning."



    JA: "Well, where would you like to start chaps? There's more than enough for you to go on after that!"

    GB: “I’ve already mentioned Denly, he looks to have a flaw in his technique that Australia are going to expose time and again. I think we might have seen the last of Rory Burns as well. He needs to do something serious when he bats in the 2nd innings. He was comprehensively beaten by Starc, stumps and bails flying everywhere, he looks over matched. He made 11 runs at Edgbaston, total, 7 here this morning. He has some promise and its nothing against him, but maybe he needs to go back down a level and work a little bit more.”

    PT: “Wrong line, wasn't it for Burns? He was on Bakerloo, the ball was on Jubilee! For me, one of the danger signs for England is that two of their heavy hitters, two of the guys who have managed to do a bit when others have folded, Root and Bairstow, they’re both back in the hutch. You have to feel sorry for Joe as he keeps getting some absolute jaffers, but it is what it is. He’s got to play at it as it’s going to knock down off stump, but then it goes away from the right hander down the slope, takes the edge. Bairstow might want to ask himself what he was doing trying to drive the very first ball he saw though.”

    JA: "Aren't you being a little bit harsh on Denly, Geoffrey? Looking at the Hawkeye, Joe should have reviewed it as the ball pitched outside leg."

    GB: “Well he was out, the man at the other end with the jacket on put his finger up! We’re not here to win any popularity contests, this is international cricket. These are Test matches. They’re meant to be a test. To pit you against the very best and see who comes out on top. At the moment, there’s only ever going to be one winner with some of these players and it's the man with the ball, not the bat. Like I say, it’s nothing personal, but the proof is in the puddling. Look up at that score board, it doesn’t lie.”

    PT: “It’s hard to argue with after watching that morning session. It’s a good job it wasn’t a full two hours or England might have been all out by now! Dire straits really, there’s an awful lot of pressure on Stokes, Buttler and Ali from here. The ball is only 13 overs old, fresh bowlers after lunch, Australia haven’t even turned to Pat Cummins yet and he was excellent at Edgbaston. Hmmmm, not good at all really!”

    JA: “Well, the players are heading back through the Long Room so we’d better vacate gentlemen. Thanks for your input during the lunch break. Bad morning for England, can they do anything to turn the tide?”
     
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  2. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
    Survival Games Finalist
    Joined:
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    Ashes 2019 - 14 AUGUST 2019

    2019 Ashes, 2nd Test - Lords, London.

    Tea Day 1

    England v Australia, Australia lead 1-0

    England 1st innings - 111-9, 45.0 overs, B.Stokes 47, P.Cummins 16-5-38-4

    [​IMG]
    Jonathan Agnew: "England hanging on at the tea break then, they're 9 down it's been another fairly lacklustre session. Australia are exploiting the conditions, the ball is moving around, it's tough going for England. We've got one man who would have hated these conditions in Michael Vaughan, and another who would have loved them in Graeme Swann."

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    Michael Vaughan: "Sometimes as an international batsman you do get taken out of your comfort zone, but you have to prepare for that and be ready to counter. Buckle down, put up the walls, siege mentality. I’m not going to get myself out. You’re going to have to get me out. There’s not been enough of that from England and Australia have rightly taken advantage.”

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    Graeme Swann: “Credit to Ben Stokes, he’s batted well but he’s been a one-man band. There was a glimmer for England early this afternoon when Stokes and Buttler came together and looked like they were going to try and salvage something. Then Pat Cummins came along and put an end to things. He’s so good, very impressive indeed.”

    JA: “It’s tough to be the pick of the bowlers when you’ve got the other team at 111-9, but let’s take a look back at those wickets from Pat Cummins.”



    JA: “So what is it that Cummins does so well that is causing England so many problems this series?”

    MV: “Well for one, he’s been ruthlessly accurate. He is putting the ball where the England batsmen don’t want it. He’s testing that off stump to 4th or 5th stump line and he’s doing it time and again. And what’s more, he’s doing it at 92 or 93mph. All it takes is a little something off the pitch, or using the slope here at Lords, or even a little bit of swing, and that is a very difficult combination to solve.”

    GS: “You generally knew the right end of the bat to hold when you were playing skipper, how would you solve him?”

    MV: “Just survive, I think! You’re not going to get masses of bad balls to score off, but he will drift over to the pads from time to time if he’s searching for those stumps. But he also can’t bowl all day. Australia don’t have a deep bowling attack and we’ve discussed that before. Lyon and Stoinis haven’t even bowled today and England are 9 down. You’ve just got to be patient and hope you don’t get one with your name on it.”

    JA: “One thing to consider of course is that we don’t know how this pitch will play tomorrow, and we don’t know what England will be able to do when they get the ball in their hand. They’re always important questions to ask.”

    MV: “There’s no doubt that it’s going to keep moving around but after this effort, England are going to need something very special indeed. It’s not a dangerous wicket, or something that is going to do something that blows you away. It’s a 250 wicket, and England are going to be about 130 runs shy of par. If Australia can just play the course as it were, they’ll be in the driver’s seat once again.”

    GS: “It looks like we’re forecast for a bit of a slow start tomorrow morning just like we had today, so there’s every chance that England could take advantage of that just as Australia have. We don’t want to write our boys off just yet, but they’re not giving us much to work with at the moment!”

    JA: “Well before we get ahead of ourselves, Australia still need to dismiss either Stuart Broad or Jimmy Anderson, so maybe we’ll have some more fireworks from that pair just as we did at Edgbaston. England need all the runs they can get, so let’s see what they can do.”
     
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  3. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
    Survival Games Finalist
    Joined:
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    Ashes 2019 - 14 AUGUST 2019

    2019 Ashes, 2nd Test - Lords, London.

    Close Day 1

    England v Australia, Australia lead 1-0

    England 1st innings - 119, 48.3 overs, B.Stokes 47, P.Cummins 18-5-42-4

    Australia 1st innings - 85-0, 25.0 overs, M.Renshaw 52*, S.Curran 4-2-7-0

    [​IMG]
    Jonathan Agnew: "That day couldn’t have gone much better for Australia. England were bowled out for a measly 119 and Australia are closing in on the total with all their wickets still intact. Matt Renshaw has looked solid in his first innings of the series, ending the day on 52 not out to help Australia to 85-0. Here to dissect England, or more likely crucify them, are Geoffrey Boycott and Phil Tufnell.”

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    Phil Tufnell: “Well now Jonathan, let’s not be too hasty. Game of two halves and all that! Only kidding, they’ve been rotten. Rotten day for England. They won the toss this morning and although the rain came in, they really haven’t done much of anything. The knives will be out in the papers tomorrow morning, it might even convince me to look at something other than the crossword!”

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    Geoffrey Boycott: “They wouldn’t even get a bat for the Dog & Duck some of this lot, it’s embarrassing. You can say what you like about the weather and the conditions, but we used to play back in the days of uncovered pitches, you and I. You had to have your wits about you were batting on those. You had to apply yourself, work hard and dig in. These boys have got fancy hover covers and you hardly get a spot of rain on the surface. I’m not having it. You can blame the conditions Philip but England would have got skittled here regardless. Poor.”

    JA: “I doubt that's the last we've heard from Geoffrey but first let's take a look at the evening's play."



    JA: “We'll leave Geoffrey to simmer a bit longer as we're delighted to be joined by Pat Cummins. Welcome to TMS!”

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    Pat Cummins: “Thanks for having me Aggers. Proud moment, TMS is well known down under and I'm pleased to be able to come and chat to you."

    JA: “I'd imagine the conversation is a lot more free flowing and easy to do when you've just had a day like you've have today?"

    PC: “Yeah, we’re pleased with that for sure. I’m not sure what we’d have done if we’d won the toss but we ended up bowling and the conditions were a dream, especially this morning. Mitch and Josh both did great and we’re delighted. I think the only person who’s not happy is Nath Lyon. He can’t get his hands on the ball at the moment!”

    JA: “That’s hardly surprising. You have been in some sparkling form so far this summer. You caused England all sorts of problems at Edgbaston and you’ve carried it on here at Lords. What’s the secret?”

    PC: “We all know about the bowler friendly conditions over here, it’s been good to bowl so far for sure. I think with the slow start this morning, that helped as well and although things brightened up I think England were still reeling a bit at that point. I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing, keep my pace up and keep hitting those spots. It’s certainly going well at the moment.”

    JA: “Well thank you Pat, always great to speak to you and we appreciate your time. We’ll have a word with Geoffrey and Phil before we wrap things up. The skies over Lords are going gloomy once again as we’re expecting some overnight rain that may linger into the morning."

    GB: “It’s going to take something special. Even if England can come out tomorrow and do to Australia what Australia did to them this morning, they’ve already spotted them an 85 run head start. You never know with cricket, it can be a funny old game and we’ve all seen a thing or two over the years but one day down and England already look to be heading for 2-0.”

    PT: “Yeah, bit like kicking someone when they’re down. We don’t like to pile on anybody but England have failed with the bat collectively, and now they’re looking to be failing with the ball as well if tonight is anything to go on. Who knows, maybe it rains cats and dogs and something magical happens tomorrow. We just don’t know. All you can say is England have been way below par today, plain and simple.

    JA: “I can already see the rain starting to land on the commentary box window so perhaps you’ll be right Tuffers. We’ll be on air from 10:30am tomorrow morning with coverage of Day 2 of this 2nd Ashes Test from Lords. England have been badly beaten today, but they'll be hoping this game isn’t over yet. Goodnight!”
     
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  4. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
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    England were absolutely dire on Day 1. It was brilliant haha It was just like watching real cricket, I thought I was going to get a wicket with every ball! Very rarely experienced that on Ashes before, but it was good fun.
     
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  5. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
    Survival Games Finalist
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    Ashes 2019 - 14 AUGUST 2019

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  6. Rumple43 Survival Games Finalist

    Rumple43
    Survival Games Finalist
    Joined:
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    Domestic Team:
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    Ashes 2019 - 15 AUGUST 2019

    2019 Ashes, 2nd Test - Lords, London.

    Lunch Day 2

    England v Australia, Australia lead 1-0

    England 1st innings - 119, 48.3 overs, B.Stokes 47, P.Cummins 18-5-42-4

    Australia 1st innings - 127-3, 39.0 overs, M.Renshaw 72, M.Ali 12-1-35-3

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    Jonathan Agnew: "14 overs for England this morning then once the rain had rolled away, Moeen Ali bowled 7 of them and took three wickets. Game on for England you feel if they can keep that pace going after lunch. I've got TMS regular Charles Dagnall with me, and Shane Warne has popped in to speak to us as well."

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    Charles Dagnall: “The first thing you’d probably ask is if Ali can bowl for the whole innings! He’s looked pretty much on the money this morning and it’s exactly what England needed. It had to be quick wickets and in honesty they’ve also done a decent job keeping runs off the board. There was a danger Australia might bat themselves into a really strong position just like they did at Edgbaston, but maybe those thoughts were a little premature.”

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    Shane Warne: “Watching about 4 sessions on this pitch now, it looks to be a pretty balanced strip. I don’t think either team is going to rip big runs. It’s all about making sure you get in, knuckle down and put the hard yards in. England were under par, but I think Australia will still be happy with 300 from here. It could be tough going.”

    JA: "Let's take a look back at Moeen spinning some magic from this morning's session then."



    JA: "Firstly, a word on Matt Renshaw after his first knock of the series."

    CD: "He looked good, didn't he? He'll be as disappointed as anyone not to have made it to triple digits but you feel 70+ on this track is still a pretty good effort. Bad news for England if he hits the ground running with that kind of form and keeps his place the rest of the series."

    JA: "It looks like we had a bit of an issue with the video feed for his wicket, but he fell to a tidy piece of work behind the stumps from Jonny Bairstow after an inside edge. Still, that's a good score. And Shane, we can't escape talking about Moeen.

    SW: "I'm always a fan of the spinners, you know me Aggers! Perhaps not so much the English ones given the present circumstances, but Ali has been solid. He's put the ball in the right areas and this Lords pitch can be a big help for spinners. It gets a lot of chat for the slope helping seamers, but if you can get it right and bowl from the end you need, you can get a good bit of turn and Moeen has certainly done what was needed for his side this morning."

    CD: "You certainly knew a thing or two about bowling here, so I'll take your word for it!"

    SW: "Haha! Thanks Daggers, it's a unique ground and everyone wants to get their name up on that honours board. Another couple of wickets this afternoon for Moeen and he'll do just that. You wouldn't bet against it the way he's bowled this morning."

    JA: "Right, we're set us up perfectly for this afternoon's session, so thanks to Shane for doing my job for me. Also thanks to Charles Dagnall for his input, let's get back to the action here at Lords."
     
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