England vs Australia 2nd Test: It’s almost apparent that the very first line of the preview will have Steve Smith mentioned in it. Smith batted for 662 minutes, scored 286 runs & told the world, with plenty of aplomb, how much we’ve missed watching him. There’s an unknown aura Smith carries when he comes out to bat. You hurl 150 kmph deliveries at him, he’ll move like a mantis, the world slows down for him & he then decides where the ball must be played. He’s got so much control over his game, it seems amazingly preposterous. You can’t calculate Steve Smith’s potential energy. Guess why? Because he’s never at rest. If ever there’s a statue of his built, the engineer must make sure he adds 3D effects to it. A motionless Steve Smith is pretty much unable to fathom.
While Steve Smith’s return to test cricket was spectacular, David Warner & Cameron Bancroft had mediocre stints in the middle. Bancroft though pulled off a couple of beauties at short-leg. Australia were down & out after a session & a half on day 1. Smith then took over & there was no looking back. Matthew Wade also was returning to test cricket after a huge gap & he made orchestrated a fine test century. Nathan Lyon a.k.a Gary gets better every game & the Aussie pace attack has a varied variety. Have they left any frailties for the English to work on? While it does appear that the Aussies have all bases covered, but there’s a threat hovering over them & he goes by the name of Jofra Archer.
ENGLAND’s TOP-ORDER IN DISARRAY
Rory Burns was the most impressive batsman from the English corner. The southpaw displayed a lot of character & showed a lot of discipline in the middle. Barring Burns, the rest of the top order insinuated fragility. Jason Roy, Joe Root & Joe Denly added 152 runs in 6 innings. The onus will always be upon Root to get them out of a stranglehold every single time. England’s sporadic batting order needs correction & very soon. The top order for the 2nd test remains unchanged but the approach can be much more positive. Jason Roy’s dismissal in the 2nd innings has only exacerbated English worries at the top. How will the unit respond in the 2nd test?
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When: 14th August 2019, Wednesday
Where: Lord’s, London
Kick-Off Time: 3:30 PM, IST
The 2nd test is in all readiness to be played at the mecca of cricket, Lord’s. England took on the Irish lads not very long ago & the Duke did quite a bit. England were shockingly bowled out for 85 but dismissed the Irish men for 38 in the 4th innings. The Duke was certainly moving off the pitch & the seamers here will have a lot working in their favour. The teams batting 1st have won 50 times, while the teams batting last have won 39. In the last decade, since 2019, out of the 20 games played here, 17 matches have produced results.
Australia have played 38 games at the Lord’s & have won 17 games. The Kangaroos have lost only 7. Their win/loss ratio is the best among all teams at this venue. England, have won 55 & have finished second-best 32 times. The 1st innings average at Lord’s is 32.99 & it doesn’t change drastically in the 4th innings. The 4th innings average on this strip is 28.11. Win the toss & bat first at Lord’s.
This will be the 348th time the two teams will be going head-on against each other. England have won 108 & the Aussies, 145. In the last 10 years, Australia have won 13 & England, 9. Lord’s hasn’t been the best venue for the English lads. They’ve lost 15 times & won only 7.
Australia have already announced their 12-man squad for the 2nd Ashes test. James Pattinson has been rested. Mitchell Starc & Josh Hazlewood have made it to the probable XII.
Mitchell Starc – Played:12, Wickets: 51, BBI: 6/111, 5WI: 3
Josh Hazlewood – Played: 9, Wickets: 37, BBI: 5/48, 5WI: 1
Jake Leach has been called in for Moeen Ali & James Anderson has been ruled out of the 2nd test. Jofra Archer will make his test debut.
EXPECTED PLAYING XI
Rory Burns, Jason Roy, Joe Root(c), Joe Denly, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow(wk), Chris Woakes, Jake Leach, Stuart Broad, Jofra Archer.
David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Matthew Wade, Tim Paine(c/wk), Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle, Josh Hazlewood/Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon.
PLAYERS TO WATCH OUT FOR
Steve Smith was in total control in both the innings. 84% in the 1st innings & 85 in the 2nd. He batted for over 11 hours & there’s no looking past him if you have to choose your fantasy cricket captain.
David Warner averages 46.36 against England in test cricket. He’s scored 3 test hundreds against the Poms & scores at a brisk 64.99 runs per hundred balls. Warner will be an opponent to watch out for.
Jofra Archer will make his test debut in the 2nd test but he’s hogged the limelight throughout. The supple pacer has played only 28 First-Class games & has picked 131 wickets at an impressive strike-rate(45.4). He was the gamechanger in their World Cup-winning campaign & will play a pivotal role in England’s pursuit to reclaim the Ashes.
FANTASY CRICKET TEAMS FOR ENGLAND vs AUSTRALIA 2nd TEST
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