Ian Bell scoring a match winning ton.
Never mind losing, that was somewhat expected, never mind the batting collapse, letting the arch bottler top score when it really mattered is something not many teams have ever done.
Some think England should have been embarrassed by the Aussie tail holding them up in both innings, what with Agar nearly getting his own hundred in their first knock. But England have history of that. How many players lower down the order have their best score against England? And how many times have they had the Aussies in a tight spot for someone from the wicket-keeper down to get a knock and dent the confidence.
Almost as many times as Bell has got a comfortable 20, 30, 40 then got out with a lazy nothing shot. Roughly the same amount of times he’s managed a decent knock when people are questioning his place in the side. And on that basis you can reasonably ask if you might as well drop Bell now, got all you’re going to get out of him, now he can rest on that score.
Hell of an exciting finish in a too and fro game, much like Edgbaston ’05 as everyone has pointed out.
But the excitement was caused by some bloody awful cricket. Australia spent most of the game bowling absolute rubbish while England chased down most of the wide rubbish and found a way to get out from it. The other way around wasn’t much better either.
The Greatest Bowler That Ever Lived (© English media) while he bowled some beauts, the one to get the Aussie captain the first inning a prime example there was a hell of a lot of right arm fast medium tripe in there.
And well Finn, Cook did his utmost not to have Finn anywhere near the ball. Will England drop him? Bet they won’t, it would be admitting they made a mistake because nothing he’s done this summer has justified his spot for this opening game. If they do bin him then it’ll be classic England selection. Pick Finn for a ground where Bresnan is unplayable, drop him on a ground where Bres isn’t the best.
Everyone now saying it’s going to be close because of this game but if the Aussies can let Bell score a match winning hundred when England are on the ropes, I’d be more inclined to go with Botham’s 10 nil.