Swann on song as Aussies suf­fer Lord’s col­lapse

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT -

GRAEME SWANN bowled Eng­land into a com­mand­ing po­si­tion on the sec­ond day of the sec­ond Ashes Test against Aus­tralia at Lord’s yes­ter­day.

The off- spin­ner took five wick­ets for 44 runs in 21.3 overs as Aus­tralia col­lapsed to 128 all out in re­ply to Eng­land’s first in­nings 361.

But he in­sisted he’d bowled bet­ter at Trent Bridge.

“I felt I bowled well last week, I didn’t feel I bowled as well here but I’m prag­matic enough to know I’ll take a five­for when­ever they come,” Swann told BBC Ra­dio’s Test Match Spe­cial af­ter 16 wick­ets fell in the day.

“The plan for us will be to score as many as pos­si­ble to­mor­row (Satur­day) and then have two days bowl­ing on a dry pitch.”

With so much time left, and not want­ing to bat last on a wear­ing pitch, Ashes-hold­ers Eng­land, 1-0 up in the five­match se­ries, opted against en­forc­ing the fol­low-on.

Peter Sid­dle then gave Aus­tralia hope with a re­turn of three wick­ets for four runs in five overs.

Eng­land cap­tain Alas­tair Cook and Jonathan Trott both played on be­fore Kevin Pi­etersen loosely carved the pace­man to Chris Rogers at point.

Al­though Eng­land were 31 for three in their sec­ond in­nings at stumps, they still led by 264 runs. Joe Root, missed on eight when wick­et­keeper Brad Haddin didn’t go for a chance, was 18 not out and night­watch­man Tim Bres­nan un­beaten on nought.

How Aus­tralia’s top-or­der per­formed was al­ways likely to be a key fac­tor in whether they could re­gain the Ashes and, un­like the first Test, the tail was un­able to cover up the failings of the spe­cial­ist bats­men.

Aus­tralia were all out in­side 54 overs and, af­ter opener Shane Wat­son was out for an in­nings top score of 30, they lost the rest of their wick­ets for 86 runs.

Bres­nan took two wick­ets to spark an ini­tial col­lapse that saw Aus­tralia’s 42 with­out loss trans­formed into 53 for three.

Wat­son looked good mak­ing 30. But, play­ing across his pad, Wat­son was lbw to Bres­nan.

Soon af­ter lunch Rogers was lbw in bizarre fash­ion – the left­hander, missed a pull at a Swann full toss, af­ter the ball ap­peared to slip out of the bowler’s hand, and was ‘boxed’, al­though re­plays later in­di­cated the ball would have missed leg stump.

Phil Hughes fell next, out for one when he nicked a wide de­liv­ery from Bres­nan to wick­et­keeper Matt Prior.

Dhar­masena raised his fin­ger but Hughes sought a re­view only for Hill to de­cide there was in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence to over­turn the orig­i­nal ver­dict.

There was no doubt, how­ever, about the man­ner in which Aus­tralia were four down.

Us­man Khawaja was dropped on seven off Swann. But he still gave his wicket away to the spin­ner on 14 when he holed out to Pi­etersen at mid-off.

Not for the first time, Aus­tralia cap­tain Michael Clarke, came in with his side in trou­ble. But he couldn’t get them out of it, mak­ing 28 be­fore he was lbw to a full length Stu­art Broad de­liv­ery. – AFP

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