Trent Bridge, 1st Ashes Test, Day 3
Day three was never going to match day two. 22 wickets fell across the first two days but the Aussies could only manage to pinch 4 on a day where England dug in. Pietersen and Cook resumed at 2/80 looking to build up a big lead. KP did most of the scoring early on, albeit slowly, and was the first to 50 before smashing a thick inside edge into middle stump off Pattinson. A couple of overs later Cook too moved to 50, before day two hero Ashton Agar had him brilliantly caught by Michael Clarke at first slip to snare the first wicket of his Test career. Just as the new ball was due Agar stuck again removing Bairstow who’d crawled his way to 15 off 62 balls. This brought Prior to the crease and he appeared to be the only Englishman with a pulse on day three as his strike rate sat at 70-odd. His quick innings of 31 came to an end when a leaping Cowan plucked the ball out of the air. That was kind of where things got a bit boring if I’m honest. Bell and Broad stuck around, but their scoring was slow – England’s innings is only traveling at 2.45 rpo – as a slight side-note I’d like to highlight that Shane Watson, so far this match, has bowled 19 overs for just 18 runs. England got to stumps with Bell and Broad having compiled a 100+ run partnership with Bell closing in on 100, and Broad nearing his 50. Lastly there was that non-dismissal of Broad that you’ve probably already heard about, slicing a thick edge onto Haddin’s glove deflecting to Clarke at slip – Agar and the Aussies thought they finally had a breakthrough, Broad stood there as he is entitled to do, problem was that umpire Aleem Dar too just stood there. I don’t mind players refusing to walk – or not being given out – for borderline decisions, like an iffy stumping, a sketchy LBW or a feather of an edge. But this was none of these. Unfortunately it’s not the first time that three-time ICC Umpire of the year Aleem Dar has neglected to notice a massive outside edge. Yes, had Australia not wasted its referrals earlier in the innings they could have fixed things, others say the third umpire should have stepped in regardless. Whatever your opinion, Broad is still there, day four looms and the Aussie need wickets, fast.