Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Lord's Test: Day One

I know, I know, I said I might not do this Test, but there's only so much George Eliot you can take before you find your mind wandering to how to represent England's dodgy start. Unlike down at the SWALEC, the Test began on time as Lord's was bathed in a glorious, warm sunshine, something that must've made the Sri Lankans feel far more at home...

Sri Lanka won the toss and decided to field, causing a ripple of mild amusement amongst various cricket fans and journalists. Clearly their batting collapse had had an effect on them, so it was all up to the bowlers...

Strauss got England's bat total off the mark with a clip through midwicket for four...

However, these turned out to be the only runs he'd score as he missed a straight one from Welegedara ...
And was given out LBW by Rod Ducker. 
Strauss considers a review, but as he's playing at his home ground and realises that it all the ball needs to do is hit the stumps, that it would be pointless.

Sri Lanka celebrate. It's not the best of starts for England, but coming to the crease is just the man duck for a crisis, Jonathan Trott.
Unfortunately, today is just not Jonny Trott's day. He too misses a straight one, this time from Lakmal...

And is given out LBW. 

Trott is not happy about the decision and decides to review it.

But it turns out to be a completely wasted one as the ball is shown to be clattering into the stumps. England are 18-2 and coming in next is Kevin Pietersen, a duck in desperate need for some runs.

Lakmal comes running in with KP on 2...

KP, presumably desperate to get a boundary or get into double figures quickly, plays a rash shot...

And hits it to Dilshan, who takes a sharp catch, in the gully.

Pietersen departs and England are 22-3. Suddenly Sri Lanka's decision to bowl looks a good one.

It brings to the crease the third centurion from Cardiff, Ian Bell, who plays his usual mix of defensive and then occasionally aggressive, but beautiful shots...

Such as this drive for four.

Cook, meanwhile, is still in and anchoring the other end. He tucks into Fernando, taking three boundaries off his over, including this pull for four...

A boundary that takes him to yet another half century. Difficult to believe his run of form after looking like being dropped and sent back to Essex last season!

Bell soon follows Cook to a half century, coming off the bowling of Herath. 

But Bell's watchful innings comes to an end as he slashes at one off of Welegedara. 

It's caught by Paranavitana at first slip and England are 130-4. 

In comes Eoin Morgan, another England player at his county's home ground. 

He greets Herath with a massive and well struck six, as Pietersen probably watches from the balcony with a hint of jealousy...

Cook, on 96, looks set to reach yet another century. Unfortunately though, he decides to go for a pull that just wasn't there...

Cook can only watch as Maharoof goes running...

And takes the catch. Cook departs for 96 and England are 201-5.

Despite the fact he's scored more centuries than I've had hot dinners (mild overstatement here) in recent months, Cook still trudges off absolutely gutted at missing out at another one. Sri Lanka can't believe their luck and in comes Matt Prior. England, once again, are in a precarious position.

Morgan, who is presumably making Ravi Bopara weep into his Essex kit, reaches a relatively quick 50.

Prior soon follows Morgan to a 50 as well, playing a sweep shot off Herath.

Prior's 50 is quick and just what England needed. He and Morgan piled on the runs, but did it quickly.

Lakmal, having decided to don a hat and some sunglasses (continuity error, sorry...)  bowls to Morgan.

Morgan is hit on the pad with seemingly no inside edge.

The Sri Lankan appeals fall on the deaf ears of Billy Ducktrove.

Sri Lanka review the decision and it turns out that the ball will be clattering into the leg stump.

Morgan walks off, probably disappointed to not reach what would've been a fantastic century.

In comes Stuart Broad and he and Prior manage to play out the day. 

England reach 342-6 at the close of day one, certainly a lot better than they would've expected after the start of the day. Sri Lanka will be disappointed, having not taken full advantage of England's situation.
Not a bad start to day two, by the way! 


  1. The Sri Lankan bowler should be called "Quakmal"

  2. Also, nice use of a hurling stick for Eoin Morgan's bat. Trying to think of a duck-based pun for his name. Got nothing.