|Scorecard:||England v Australia|
|Event:||Australia in British Isles 2013|
DateLine: 18th July 2013
By Andy Jalil at Lord's.
In association with INVESTEC.
London Ė Following the gripping opening Test match of the Ashes series last week and amid all the talk of disharmony within the Australian team, the second Test at cricketís HQ where all five days have been sold out, saw England recover from a poor start to reach 289 for seven with Ian Bell becoming the fourth England batsman to hit three consecutive Ashes centuries.
Australia could hardly have wished for a better start after England decided to make first use of the hard, dry pitch as they grabbed three wickets in the first half hour. Both opening batsmen were trapped leg before wicket with Alastair Cook going for 12 in fifth over with Shane Watson being brought on for just one over and the plan worked.
The next over saw two wickets fall to Ryan Harris who was one of two changes in the touristsí side. He was brought in for Mitchell Starc and the other replacement was Usman Khawaja for Ed Cowans who had scores of 0 and 14 at Trent Bridge. Joe Root asked for the decision of his dismissal to be reviewed and after a lengthy look the third umpire decided that there wasnít an edge from the bat before the pad was struck.
Harris then found the outside edge of Kevin Pietersenís bat, three balls later, for a catch behind. The tourists would have been particularly pleased with Pietersenís wicket as he has a fine record against them with an average of 65.66 and on this ground he averages 61. 40, having made his Test debut here against Australia in July, 2005. England had lost three wickets in a space of ten runs to be reduced to three for 28.
Regarded as Englandís most consistent batsman, Jonathan Trott brought about a recovery along with Ian Bell as they settled into a stand of 99. Playing fluently, Trott reached his seventeenth Test half century from 77 balls when he drove James Pattinson to the on side for his tenth four. Bell too played fine strokes the best of which was the straight drive for four off Peter Siddle. Harris struck for the third time having Trott mistime his hit to leg for Khawaja to take the catch at mid-wicket.
Bell went on bring up his 36th Test fifty during a stand with Jonny Bairstow who was fortunate to get a reprieve having been bowled by Siddle for 21 but the replay showed it was a no-ball. At tea England were 185 for four with Bell on 62 and Bairstow on 28 and after the break they further strengthened Englandís position with Bairstow bringing up his fourth Test half century along with the hundred of the stand.
Bell progressed into the nineties square cutting Ashton Agar for four. He had earlier taken three fours in an over from James Pattinson, of which two were lovely shots to cover, off the back foot, and then to extra cover. His nineteenth Test century followed, having faced 203 balls and spanning five hours. With the 144-run partnership with Bairstow he had taken England to 271 for five before edging leg spinner Steve Smith to slip.
Three runs later, Bairstow, on 67, gave a low return catch to Smith who then had Matt Prior caught behind to reduce England to 283 for seven and Smith had taken three for 12 in a 22-ball spell of leg spin bowling.
(Article: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author only.
Copyright © 2013 Andy Jalil)