The Ashes 2015 – Second Test, Day 4: Flogging


It was a cruel morning for me as I stood watching my IPad. Yes, PB II had to stand in my flat such was the size.

I have never felt so helpless. Watching a screen on the AFL website that could only give the changing scores of the Adelaide Crows v Port Adelaide. At three quarter time all was looking good with the Crows 30 points up. What a last quarter to sit through with Power kicking goal after goal.

Well done to both teams before a crowd of 54,465 entranced supporters.

The day starts dramatically at Lord’s when Chris Rogers (49) signals that there is something wrong. He drops to the ground and after some attention leaves the field assisted by two team officials. He retires hurt with the score on 114

Smith and Warner continue the attack with some imperious shots all around the wicket. The 50 partnership comes off 47 balls.

Warner, on the attack holes out to Ali caught by Cook for 83. 1/165 a lead of 419.

Smith continues to thrash the bowling to all parts of the field. He loves it and he reaches 50 off 43 balls. Moeen gets him when he goes for a windy woof. 68 off 48 balls. 2/210. A declaration can’t be too far away… Its one-day cricket now by the Aussies

It looks like Australia will declare at the magic 500 the way things are going. Marsh and Clarke are kept to one run a ball. Conjecture, conjecture on the BBC about the declaration.

As usual Clarke surprises everyone and declares 18 minutes before lunch. This means that there will be at least two overs before lunch. England needs 509 to win in five sessions of play. Clarke himself leaves with 33 and Marsh 27. Marsh’s two last shots where magnificent hits into the members.

Three overs before lunch which Lyth and Cook are able to survive. Amazing how hushed the crowd is for every ball. Great enthusiasts of the game here at Lord’s. 0/7 at lunch.

Lunch and a wicket straight after with Lyth (7) tickling Starc to Nevill. 1/12 and the Englishmen will be looking for the middle order to lift their game. Good ball from Starc.

England is in real trouble with Captain Cook’s navigational skills deserting him. Cook (11) need not have played the ball from Johnson that went straight through to Peter Nevill. Nevill is having a great debut with five catches to date and a fine 45. England 2/23

Johnson continues to be the bogeyman for England and he bowls some fearsome balls to the out of form Ian Bell. A brilliant over from the Australian speed man.

Ballance looks secure but Bell is playing like a man completely out of form. Johnson beats him time and time again. A brilliant spell of bowling by Johnson who has been superb in this match. A far cry from Cardiff last week.

Marsh is on and the batsman Ballance relaxes and is out! Marsh’s first ball he nicks to Nevill (his sixth catch) and is gone for 14.  At 3/42 the Poms are in big, big trouble again.

For the 11th time in the last 18 Test matches England have lost three wickets with the score less than 74. The Lion is in trouble and will need to make changes in the top order if they are to stay in the series.

Clarke’s intuition comes to the fore again and he relieves Marsh for Johnson after a wicket maiden. His modus operandi is all out attack a la Clive Lloyd and his team of magical West Indian speedsters.

Root and Bell continue to struggle and Root is dropped behind the wicket as Nevill dives in front of Voges off Johnson.

The batsmen are defending for all they’re worth and runs have become secondary.

Bell (11) goes forward and hits a simple bat-pad catch to Shaun Marsh from the accurate Lyon and England are 4/48

Stokes makes one of the most elementary mistakes in cricket in not (a) grounding his bat and (b) having his foot off the ground when Johnson’s return hit the wicket. Poor cricket at its best. 5/53 and Stokes is out without troubling the scorer. Elementary my dear Stokes, elementary.

The English crowd are cheering every run. So far there has not been too much of it today and like the team selector and commentators there will be a lot of talk about the composition of the team for the next test. Shades of Cardiff and the Australian media et al.

This is what makes cricket such a great game and the game we can spend hours talking about.

In a devastating session Australia has taken 5/57 and England are in complete disarray at 5/64.

Utter capitulation as Mitchell Johnson gets Buttler (11) caught behind (Nevill’s 7th catch) and Ali (0) caught by Shaun Marsh. 7 for 64 and the bowling of Johnson has been spectacular. He has 3/11 from 7 overs in one of his finest spells ever.

If this was a two horse race the stewards would certainly inquire about how either horse could perform so differently on the same surface with the bat. I think that the answer is simple. The visitors have bowled far superior than their counterparts.

Broad (25) swings his bat but swings once too often and Voges takes an easy catch off the bowling of Lyon. The score 8/101 has shocked the crowd but they can still cheer every run. Stiff upper lip what!

Hazlewood comes on for Johnson and bowls Root (17) England 9/101. Anderson is bowled by Hazlewood for a duck and it is all over. Australia won by 405 runs. A most comprehensive win the English innings lasting little more than two hours

In the words of that great English fighting opener Geoffrey Boycott “amazingly poor” in his scathing report on the performance of the team.

It was the easy capitulation that now has the Lion cringing and one cannot see them getting up of the floor in the next Test.

As Darren Lehmann said at Cardiff “it was only a hiccup”. Wise words from the coach but in my humble opinion it was cockiness that brought the Australian team undone.

A week is a long time in cricket and so it cam to pass an annihilation by Australia of an incompetent England.

Check out Ladbrokes prices for this round

So what are the prices for Edgbaston?


About Bob Utber

At 80 years of age Citrus Bob is doing what he wanted to do as a 14 year-old living on the farm at Lang Lang. Talking, writing, watching sport. Now into his third book on sports history he lives in Mildura with his very considerate wife (Jenny ) and a groodle named "Chloe On Flinders". How good is that.


  1. Dave Brown says

    Thanks Bob, needless to say your grandlad done good. I’m a bit worried that producing dead pitches like the first two gives an unreasonable advantage to the team that wins the toss. In the first the English posted a big first innings and mentally disintegrated the Australians over the following days with questioning of team selection to follow for the losers. We have just seen exactly the same scenario in the second, although a greater flogging. Would hate to see an Ashes series decided by five coin tosses.

  2. Great win. Let’s hope Mitch Marsh stays fit.


  3. Incredible turn around. Isn’t sport just fantastic? I didn’t rate the English much before the first Test (hence my crankiness) and rate them less now. We need to keep our foot on the throat.

  4. Bob Utber says

    Like you Dave I along with my new friend Geoffrey (Boycott) I could not agree more. The Poms have been hoisted on their own petard and the cricket world are coping it.
    Dips – they are a shocking Team and are scratching to find replacements.q
    Glen – marSh and Neville had wonderful matches and brought life to the team. Many of us picked the replacements anyway. Marsh is secur e and Nevill should get the next test even if the mouth is available.

  5. E.regnans says

    Top shelf work again Citrus.
    Living vicariously through your snippets here. Thanks!

    New team members bring a freshness with them, don’t they?
    Interested to know pf the vibe and your thoughts of what comes next…
    Grand stuff.

  6. I reckon Phil Nevill’s keeping and batting in this Test signified the end of Haddin’s career. He was a cut above for agility, anticipation and clean glovework. And his batting much crisper and incisive.
    Haddin has been a great servant, but as Wally Grout said “never give a sucker an even break”.

  7. Bob Utber says

    Pete – the English Press have been scathing this morning on the insipid batting. Lyth will stay despite tickling in 7 out of last 8 digs.
    Johnnies Taylor and Bairstowe keep making runs. One will replace either Ballance or Bell. No Mitchell’s and Josh among the bowlers though. No changes for Aussies.
    Captain Cook gives MCC a serve on pitch and rightly so.

  8. Bob – the ICC is too moribund to take this up, but to do something about hometown pitches in Tests – the visiting captain should get the call on batting or bowling first. Ditch the toss. Prepare a green top for the Mitchells in Perth or Brisbane and Australia get sent in by the visitors. On the sub-continent the visitors at least get first go on the raging. slow, low turners.
    Would at least encourage preparation of fairer pitches. Sport needs to understand that it is in a world entertainment marketplace and dud wickets or Roos/Lyon AFL yawn fests are just catering for the rusted on fans.
    Great to see Hinkley and Camporeale let both teams run and play yesterday. As a neutral it was one of the best games of the year to watch, and that was as fitting a tribute as the close result.

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