Day 2, Headingley

England already needed a miracle at the start of the day. Marcus North and Micheal Clarke were in too much of a good form to entertain
any chances of that.They just took the game far and away from England’s reach. I couldn’t take good note of the English bowling performance  in
this period but I believe Harmison bowled with a big heart, especially with the second new ball. I did watch Stuey’s cameo later in the
innings. When you’re in that kind of a position in a match, bowlers lose focus while bowling to tail enders.

Coming to the   ‘delaying the inevitable’  English innings, Hilfenhaus was outstanding in his opening spell.His line was perfect right from the start. Siddle bowled a very tight spell and it was pressure from both ends.
This is where Cook and Strauss played well. They played each ball to merit.They were concentrating hard  and got to a good half century stand. Test cricket demands long periods of concentration and that’s where Strauss was found wanting in this innings. It was the usual Hilfenhaus inswinger pitching just outside off and coming back in.The captain missed it and was back in the hut.

Ponting had the luxury of setting a really attcking field and he did that.It was good to see the mid off area left open for Cook, inviting him to drive against the inswing off Hilfenhaus.

It was just a matter of sticking to plans and applying constant pressure for Australia. Pressure alone was enough.Bowlers did’nt need  to do anything extraordinary.
Ravi Bopara has had a nightmare of a series.I thought he played for the outswinger when the ball jagged back and hit his pads.He was a  little unlucky to be given out considering the faint inside edge the ball took before hitting his pads. Shane Warne has called him ‘not international class’ and Bopara
has got a lot to prove now.Bell proded at an angling delivery from Johnson and he wont remember this match for too long.

The wall goes as well

Nasser Hussain called it a classic way to set up a batsman’s dismissal but Colly made a huge mistake of shuffling in too much.There were a few balls angling away and then the full pitched inswinger caught  Collingwood in front.
Mitchell Johnson is still not back in good form. The Sky commentary team thinks he is.If I were Ponting, Ill pick Lee in Johnson’s place for  the decider at the Oval. That’ll make a great bowling attack for Australia.
Lee,Clark,Hilfy and Siddle..all in great form.
Im a huge fan of Marcus North’s batting now. Terrific. I see him as the next Mr.Cricket.
England play for pride tomorrow.

This is the Headingley disaster of ’09.

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