Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Second Test Build up

A quick look back at the first test and a few thoughts on what we can expect from the second one:

  • Steven Finn to keep his place. Although he was probably the weakest of England's bowlers in the first test, Lords will suit him better. England are also quite wary of changing a winning side, and even if Tim Bresnan offers lower order runs/reverse swing, it probably isn't enough to offset what seems like a recent lack of pace.
  • Swann to take a few wickets. Everyone was saying that Nottingham was dry and he'd get hatfulls. What that ignores is that Swanny can turn it most places, and the pitches that suit him best are probably those that have a bit more pace. Also that the 1st test was at arguably his least productive venue. Although Lords is hardly a spinner's paradise, he has done better there, and will probably enjoy the help it gives to the seamers so that he doesn't feel he has to do all the work.
  • Michael Clarke to get runs. It would be nice if we could keep Australia's captain quiet, but realistically, he's likely to get big runs at some point in the series. England's advantage is more about the way their whole top order bats as a unit. Hopefully, a quicker pitch will suit KP's strokeplay more too.
  • James Pattinson to do well. Lords suits a particular type of seamer. One who might or might not be quick (he is) but who also hits a length accurately and forces the batsman to play. Glenn Mcgrath used to clean up at Lords. Pattinson could do so too. Of course, Finn and Broad also like to bowl there, so it won't all be one way.
  • The tailenders to get fewer runs. Agar looked good with a bat. So did Pattinson. Broad did pretty well (obvious edges notwithstanding). But it was a slow pitch. One where they knew they weren't going to get a killer surprise bouncer. That changes the way people play, a lot.
  • Australia to get better use of the DRS. Broad's non-dismissal was a big mistake by the umpire, and not terribly sporting by Broad (although perfectly within the rules, and pretty common on faint edges). But it was also a failure by Australia, because they used up their decision reviews on bad reviews earlier in the match. They tried to use a system designed to reduce bad calls to get a marginal tactical advantage, and it blew up in their faces. They won't make that mistake again.

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