3rd Day’s : Thoughts on observation :
Australian top order needs to tighten their attacking shots. They have a tendency to play loose shots early in their innings, especially in second innings.
I believe like defensive shots/play, even attacking shots need to be practiced. One need to train how to drive the ball on various surface, against uneven bounce and on flat surface. Training and practicing horizontal and vertical attacking shots is a necessity for all batsmen, playing any format.
Watson’s always scores runs playing the pull off the front foot – perhaps this time, his weight transfer was not timed, and might have played early. And it was good to see Rogers playing the cut shot so early in his innings. I believe he can do better than that.
Attacking shots, is a very fascinating skill, as its basically based on situation of the innings/game.
In LOIs (including T20s) games, one would see all kind of shots played in last few overs, and does not matter whether that player is tail end or top order – the attacking range will be there, irrespective how correct its played.
Similarly in Test matches, when teams are ahead in the game, and are trying to set a target. It does not matter how the runs were scored, or how it was played. M Clarke missing the sweep shot, or Haddin trying to loft over mid-off, all is good. However at the beginning of an innings its not very easy, unless you are in form, and have confidence to play the attacking role.
This kind of cricket Australia were not playing during the tour of India, and the beginning of last Ashes in England. I guess they have realized the importance of aggressive cricket, and hope they can continue exploring and improving this brand of cricket, which in past assisted them to dominate world cricket.
Speed : England bowling within themselves
Was surprised to see English bowlers not using the condition to bowl at full pace, or is it on purpose they are not bowling full throttle in this Test. I am sure they did the same during the tour games, so that they can focus on their length which is the most important factor for bowlers (especially visiting side) whenever one is touring Australia. If this is the reason, than David Saker( Aussie born, played for Victoria) England bowling coach has done an excellent job in helping them to focus on length.
However am little surprised by Swann’s speed, and maybe that is the reason he was not getting much purchase from Gabba. Interestingly both Root and Lyon got more bite than Swann.
Here is a list of bowling speed from last Ashes (2013) and comparison to Gabba Test.
|Eng(Ashes 2013)||1st Test(1st nn/2nd inn)||2nd Test(1st nn/2nd inn)||3rd Test(1st nn/2nd inn)||4th Test(1st nn/2nd inn)||5th Test(1st nn/2nd inn)|
|England||Gabba(1st nn/2nd inn)||Australia||Gabba(1st inn)|
Note : Speed in above table is average mph.
I have included average and not maximum speed. I believe it’s a tough job to bowl fast therefore consistency is key. The more often you touch your peak pace, the average will inevitably increase.
Meanwhile, since Haddin has come back to Test XI, Australia middle order partnerships is getting some density. Here is a comparison from last Ashes in Eng(2013).
England 2nd inning: intent good of batting for long, but wrong batsman for role-play.
M Carberry : doesn’t have a defensive batting style. He likes to look for runs. Initially one was shocked to see him in the touring party, but it only suggested that England’s intention was to get aggressive start at the top.
This intention was quite obvious during last Ashes, when they dropped Neil Compton, and replaced him with middle order bat Joe Root. Although Root manage to score a big hundred, but since then his form has taken a slide. He failed miserably as an opener, therefore selectors have reverted his batting position to middle order, and replaced him with Carberry. Carberry is natural aggressive batsman, and has done extremely well for Hampshire in all format.
However in both innings at Gabba, one thought he was advice not to play aggressively and play a sheet anchor role. In the second innings he got into a shell and was never looking for runs. The pressure got the better of him, and was bowled.
From his dismissals I was curious to know how many times he has been bowled in first class cricket this year?… never!.
This year, in all formats only twice he has been bowled, the first was in a ODI game @Cardiff v/s Australia this September. For Hampshire in all formats (total of 38 inns) not a single time he has been bowled.
My curiosity is from this fact that openers do get bowled regularly, and most are for low scores.
This year (2013)in all Int. formats, there were 157 (24.26%) openers bowled (53 low scores >10) out of 647 total bowled.
Close of play Day 3 – Eng (2nd inn)24-2 (15 overs)
Here is a link to meaning of all ndicators/formula – http://allthatcricket.com/?p=1489