England ends on a high as 1st Ashes Test drawn

Posted: Monday, November 29, 2010 by Sanya Michelangelo in Labels: , , , , ,

It was a record breaking day at the Gabba. Alastair Cook continued from his overnight score of 132* and scored his first double hundred. Till his 173 against Bangladesh, he used to get out soon after completing his ton but when he got out against Bangladesh, he was in distraught. Alastair Cook is liked by most. England have wanted him to be the permanent opener. He has never been dropped in Tests. He is the king on flat pitches and his concentration is hard to match. In this Test, he stayed on the field for 1705 minutes (over 28 hours), 1302 runs, 402.1 overs. Whoa! Not many players must have spent so much time on the field in a match. In England's 1st innings, it took him 168 balls to score 67, when he got out, England were 197 and were bowled out for 260. He stayed on the field for Australia's 481. Opened in England's innings, England declared on 517/1. And lastly, stayed on the field for Australia's 107/1. Alastair Cook's 235* is the 2nd highest by an Englishman in the last 30 years.

When Strauss declared, I didn't think he did the right thing. The pitch was flat and he posed a target of 297 in 40+ overs. But England's attitude assured me that from no way would England lose from such a situation. Throughout the Test, England did well, whether they were fielding, batting or bowling. Though 260 in the 1st innings was below par, a catch was dropped, overthrows were given during Australia's 2nd innings. England have certainly never been so good in Australia. They dominated the warm-ups, bowled superbly and came back after being 200-odd behind. Though the pitch should take most of the credit. Strauss, Cook (235*) and Trott (135*), Ponting (51* off 43) cashed in.

Man of the Match: Alastair Cook

You would rarely see such a Test where: the pitch helps bowling in the start and slowly becomes flat, one team rattles behind by 221, then declares at 517/1. By the way, this was only the 6th time in history when a team reached 500 with only one wicket down. The instances of 500/1 are listed below.
  • West Indies against Pakistan, 1958
  • Australia against West Indies, 1965
  • Sri Lanka against India, 1997
  • Sri Lanka against Zimbabwe, 2004
  • South Africa against Bangladesh, 2008
  • England against Australia, 2010
But these kinds of records don't help the team much. It may help in managing to draw but usually, when one team scores so many, so does the other, unless it's a minnow side.

The 2nd Ashes Test starts on December 3 at Adelaide Oval at 00:00 GMT. Until next time, take care. Cheers.

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  1. England came back very strongly over the last 2 days... but the lifelessness of the pitch spoiled the show for me. I expected a lot more out of the Gabba wicket (especially because there had been rain during the build up to the Test match)... and to eventually see only 22 wickets fall, it was disappointing!