Australia ended Day 1 in a position of utter dominance. Hundreds from Steve Smith and Chris Rogers kept the England bowlers at bay and ensured that Australia didn’t even allow England to relax for a moment. It was a day literally owned by Australia. The English bowlers, in their own backyard looked helpless, exhausted and pale. The positive body language too was nowhere and despite Alastair Cook’s best efforts to rejuvenate the side, it yielded no results. The Australians have surely marauded England and they can only inflict more damage to England. From their current position, it is profusely difficult to see them concede this test. For that to happen, something catastrophic would have to occur in the second innings.
We now have a now look at the five highlights of Day 1:
1. A solid opening stand:
If Australia were to support their skipper’s choice of batting first, it would have been the openers who could have provided them with a solid start. That is what exactly happened on the first morning at the Lord’s. David Warner and Chris Rogers got Australia off to a flying start and they looked solid. Despite James Anderson swinging the ball well, it didn’t make a difference to the openers. The first wicket stand was for 78 runs and more than anything else; the openers negated the effect of the new ball.
2. Ali once again dismissing Warner:
With the pacers looking ineffective, the onus was on Moeen Ali to strike. Even though Ali personally wouldn’t be happy with his day one performance, he was the only bowler to strike. Ali once again got rid of David Warner. The wicket though, was more of a gift as Warner looked to slap the ball away through the covers, where Anderson took the catch.
3. Chris Rogers making a fine ton:
Rogers was unfortunate to miss out on his ton in the first test. However, the veteran opener made his mark at the Mecca of cricket as he got to a well made ton. Rogers played at a decent strike rate and his boundaries were just a treat to the eyes. Rogers looked flawless in his approach and his biggest strength aiding him was his concentration. He ensured that the English bowlers had a great headache while trying to get the better of him.
4. Dropped chances hurting England:
The England catching was simply sloppy on day one. If they are to blame any particular department, then it will unquestionably be the fielding department. Dropping well set batsmen like Rogers and Smith is nothing but a sin. Smith was dropped on 50 by Ian Bell, on the bowling of Ben Stokes. That proved to be a costly drop as Smith raced off to his ton. Rogers too was dropped at leg slip, and like Smith, he too inflicted great misery upon England.
5. Smith making a hard hitting statement:
Before and post the first test, a lot of individuals had doubted the run making ability of Steve Smith. Smith’s willow made sure that his critics were sent a stern message as he amassed yet another ton in test cricket. On a considerably flat Lord’s wicket, Smith seized the opportunity with both hands as he went on tiring the bowlers. His marathon knock was significant in solidifying Australia’s position of dominance.