Australia are on the verge of levelling the series today at Headingley after another meek surender from England’s batsmen during the final hour of the 2nd day’s play. In little more than 7 overs England managed to go from 58/0 to 82/5 with another inept performance from the much vaunted – so called best players in the country according to Geoff Miller – batting line up.
The bowlers didn’t fair much better in the morning either. Anderson looked like he was back to the bad old days of four ball after four ball, Onions was surprisingley left out of the attack until just after 12.30 in the first session after which the damage had been done, questioning Strauss’ captaincy ability again.
Swann looked menacing during the onslaught at times but by now the Aussie batsmen where so far on top they were just taking him on at any opportunity – only Stuart Broad managed any respectability taking 6-91, probably doing enough to again hold onto his place with his last throw of the dice when he should already have been dropped.
Harmison was again short and wide, although this time it is widely acknowledged he was probably bowling to a plan working on the theory that Michael Clarke was struggling with the short ball due to his stomach injury.
Struggle Michael Clarke didn’t as he extended his lead at the top of the Ashes run scoring stats with another majestic innings this time getting out on 93 when yet another century was there for for the taking.
Marcus North again looked assured and solid at No.6 scoring his 2nd century of the series before he holed out in the pursuit of lower order runs while batting with the tail for 110, taking the Aussies to a formiddable total of 445 – a small lead of 343.
Then came the feeble response, Strauss was out to Hilfenhaus who at last got his lbw – dosen’t Strauss ever learn either. Then Bopara summed up his series with a 1st baller, he may have been unlucky with an inside edge but he looked stuck in his crease and was let down by his technique.
Bell surendered to Mitchell Johnson again and Collingwood looked totally out of his depth against the revitalised bowler who worked him over with ease, Cook completed the embarrassment hanging his bat out playing yet another English nothing shot gifting Mitchell Johnson his 3rd wicket while playing him into top form for The Oval test match.
Not much point putting odds up except to say rain(draw) can be backed at 100/1 with Blue Square and 888Sport – you would still be mad to back that!