Bangladesh v Australia: second Test, day one – as it happened
Bangladesh end day one 253-6. Nathan Lyon takes 5-77, his third five-for in a row. Australia must win in Chittagong to level the series.
This article titled “Bangladesh v Australia: second Test, day one – as it happened” was written by Jonathan Howcroft, Sam Perry, and Adam Collins, for theguardian.com on Monday 4th September 2017 11.16 UTC
Bangladesh end day one 253-6
This excellent Test series has delivered another fascinating day’s cricket, one that will give both sides cause for optimism.
Australia tore into the Bangladesh top order courtesy of four consecutive Nathan Lyon LBWs but from 117-5 the home side fought back spiritedly. A 105-run partnership between Sabbir Rahman and Mushfiqur Rahim ground the visiting attack into the Chittagong dust during a sweltering afternoon and evening when Australia’s selection policy came under serious scrutiny. It was a jolt to the system when Lyon returned late on to capture his fifth of the day to restore an evenness to proceedings.
It was Lyon’s third consecutive Test five-for, making him the first Australian to achieve the feat since Glenn McGrath. He was ably supported by Pat Cummins, who, worryingly, had to leave the field with exhaustion during the final session.
The pitch has played flat and true for most of the day and cannot be faulted for any of Bangladesh’s wickets. The only question now is how will it deteriorate over the coming days, and how important a toss was it for the home side to win?
To find out, join us back here for more of the same tomorrow.
90th over: Bangladesh 253-6 (Mushfiqur 62, Nasir 19)
Lyon back for the final over of the day and Mushfiqur Rahim sees it off in the peach-hued twilight.
And so ends an enthralling day of Test cricket.
89th over: Bangladesh 253-6 (Mushfiqur 62, Nasir 19)
Penultimate over of the session bowled by Agar and Bangladesh continue to pick up runs late in the day. After both batsmen share a few nurdles Nasir unleashes that sumptuous in-to-out cover drive that rockets to the fence.
88th over: Bangladesh 246-6 (Mushfiqur 60, Nasir 14)
More runs against O’Keefe who has looked worryingly innocuous on his controversial recall.
Despite the day drawing to a close Mushfiqur and Nasir both look to attack the left-armer, targeting the cover boundary and both find it with the minimum of fuss but no little elegance.
87th over: Bangladesh 237-6 (Mushfiqur 55, Nasir 10)
No end switch for Lyon with Agar the man replacing the stale cheese straw formerly known as Pat Cummins.
From around the wicket Agar makes Nasir play out a maiden.
In other subcontinental cricket news…
I’m sure there’ll be more to read on this in tomorrow’s papers.
86th over: Bangladesh 237-6 (Mushfiqur 55, Nasir 10)
Steve O’Keefe replaces Nathan Lyon (who’s presumably switching ends) and Nasir sees it off without any bother, including a lovely flowing inside-out cover drive for three.
85th over: Bangladesh 234-6 (Mushfiqur 55, Nasir 7)
Pat Cummins is desiccated. He is a limping, staggering, dehydrated husk of a man, but he continues to ignore his body’s cries for help and charges in for his captain.
There’s nothing out there for him though, in the air or off the pitch, and with his pace dropping into the 130s kph he is robbed of wicket taking options.
84th over: Bangladesh 232-6 (Mushfiqur 54, Nasir 6)
Since the wicket Lyon has looked more energetic at the crease and consequently he’s finding more bounce than we’d become accustomed to. It’s forced the batsmen to think on their feet and they’re both getting in awkward positions trying to get off strike. That is until Nasir Hossain rocks back and carves Lyon through the offside like he’s shadow batting the ideal backfoot drive to bring up his 1000 Test run milestone.
83rd over: Bangladesh 225-6 (Mushfiqur 52, Nasir 1)
Cummins continues to toil but the poor guy looks like the tin woodsman in The Wizard of Oz before the WD40. His trudge to the top of his mark between deliveries is increasing, which allows for plenty of replays of that incredible stumping. Scandalously bad delivery, whip crack glovework, and such unfortunate batting. A delightful illustration of the glory of Test cricket.
Back to the primary news of the session, I am duty bound to share this.
82nd over: Bangladesh 222-6 (Mushfiqur 50, Nasir 0)
The new ball and the golden arm GOAT do the business again for Australia. You could barely design a more borderline stumping in your life. It could have gone either way but it went in favour of the keeper and Australia are back in this day.
WICKET! Sabbir st Wade b Lyon 66 (Bangladesh 222-6)
Lyon to share the new ball for the second time in the day (I’m not sure how often I’ll need to reuse that sentence).
What on earth has happened here!? Rank delivery short and wide down the legside, Sabbir tries to pull it but can’t get near it. Wade whips the bails off while the batsmen pirouettes awkwardly on his right foot, with his left in the air. From one side-on view there’s nothing behind the line, from the other there may be a spike’s width.
TV umpire says OUT! Huge huge moment in this match and it’s Matthew Wade’s!
Is this a stumping?
81st over: Bangladesh 222-5 (Mushfiqur 50, Sabbir 66)
The new ball has been taken immediately… and Pat Cummins takes it, interesting. The day now takes on a final 10-over mini-session. Can this set pair readjust from the gentle pace of the spinners to the venom of the quick with a fresh conker?
Not a great start for Cummins with his fourth delivery spearing wide and wild down the legside and away for four wides byes! That is rank bad luck for Wade behind the stumps, they should not be his runs. Cummins in the 130s kph that over and he looks shattered bless him. A terrific start to today is getting a little bit messy for Australia.
80th over: Bangladesh 217-5 (Mushfiqur 50, Sabbir 65)
Last over before a potential new ball and Mushfiqur uses it to milk the couple he required to bring up his 18th Test fifty, and the century partnership.
The game has swung in the last 33 overs and this fightback sets up the remainder of the Test beautifully.
79th over: Bangladesh 215-5 (Mushfiqur 48, Sabbir 65)
Another decent but unthreatening Cartwright over with an inordinate amount of leaves from Saabbir.
Have Bangladesh decided to shut up shop before stumps, or is this the intake of breath before a final assault?
Spot on Gary, and yes, both probably could do that, but it is searingly hot out there and I think it’s now a damage limitation phase for a few overs until the new ball. It would be an old-ball seamer’s surface if Australia had one though, the Matthew Hoggard type.
78th over: Bangladesh 215-5 (Mushfiqur 48, Sabbir 65)
Into the final hour of play now with the last drinks break taken. O’Keefe to continue. Not much doing again for the suspended New South Welshman but he could have earned something with another top-edge sweep but again it falls safely.
Sorry Adam, Geoff Wignall has chimed in with some sense:
I feel Paris is an unimprovable suggestion; however for those of a certain vintage there are only 3 truly eminent Cartwrights outwith the cricketing sphere ( the great Tom): Ben, Hoss and Little Joe – the seldom seen Adam being too seldom seen.
77th over: Bangladesh 213-5 (Mushfiqur 47, Sabbir 64)
Another mistimed uppish drive works in Bangladesh’s favour. This one from Sabbir squirts over point, and proves my point, about Cartwright from earlier. It’s as though on this surface every delivery is a slower ball, the batsmen forcing their hands through much sooner than required.
My prolapsed disc and I know that role depressingly well.
76th over: Bangladesh 211-5 (Mushfiqur 47, Sabbir 62)
Better from O’Keefe who finds a smidgen of bounce that Mushfiqur isn’t happy about but otherwise all eyes on the forthcoming new ball and the fitness of Pat Cummins.
This was not a toss Australia wanted to lose.
75th over: Bangladesh 210-5 (Mushfiqur 47, Sabbir 61)
Bec, AKA Paris, almost jags a wicket with a mistimed drive that lobs through the covers without finding a fielder. Cartwright’s pace hasn’t been picked properly yet by either batsman and if he finds a good length consistently that could become an issue.
74th over: Bangladesh 209-5 (Mushfiqur 47, Sabbir 60)
O’Keefe is really just offering up deliveries now. They’re arriving apologetically, without any revs, turn or bounce, and Mushfiqur fills his boots with a slog sweep for four through the on side and then a meaty drive for four through the off.
Australia need a fillip from somewhere, this partnership is motoring along.
73rd over: Bangladesh 201-5 (Mushfiqur 39, Sabbir 60)
Bec Cartwright (AKA Paris) comes on for his second over. Sabbir likes what he sees but he has to wait until the final delivery before he pierces the infield and celebrates a textbook driven boundary through the covers.
200-up for Bangladesh.
72nd over: Bangladesh 197-5 (Mushfiqur 39, Sabbir 56)
O’Keefe really lobbing them up gently now, little looping nudies. Feels like the middle overs of an ODI out there and a huge opportunity for Bangladesh to accumulate.
71st over: Bangladesh 193-5 (Mushfiqur 38, Sabbir 53)
Agar continues what is a pretty thankless task. Five dots are met with a two from the final delivery courtesy of some excellent outfielding from Cummins. At long off the fast bowler was mopping up after a lofted drive over extra cover that had a few shouts of ‘catch it’ from the cordon.
70th over: Bangladesh 192-5 (Mushfiqur 37, Sabbir 53)
Runs back on the menu against O’Keefe, five to be precise. As mentioned earlier the radically different strike points of both batsmen is proving awkward to bowl to, not allowing the spinners to forget their length. Partnership up to 75 and becoming very handy indeed.
69th over: Bangladesh 188-5 (Mushfiqur 36, Sabbir 50)
Agar gets away with a wide long hop in a maiden over to Mushfiqur.
Matthew Wade’s cry from behind the stumps for Ashton Agar is presumably ‘Aggers’ but it sounds suspiciously like ‘Aggots’. The latter would please me more.
Good news for Australia; Pat Cummins is back on.
68th over: Bangladesh 188-5 (Mushfiqur 36, Sabbir 50)
O’Keefe replaces Lyon and he’ll be dirty with Maxwell for some overthrows cluttering up his figures, overthrows that contribute to Sabbir Rahman reaching an excellent tempo-raising momentum-shifting 50, his fourth in Tests.
Amod Paranjape isn’t getting carried away:
This Sabbir is dangerous. Danger works both ways. Can have a rush of the blood to his head. Aussies have to hang in and keep digging.
67th over: Bangladesh 184-5 (Mushfiqur 36, Sabbir 46)
Ooooooh lucky lucky Mushfiqur. He tries the Sabbir sweep approach but gets a top edge that loops high in the air and hangs like a kite but there’s no Australian fielder within cooee so there’s no catch. Agar with another solid over.
News on Pat Cummins is that it’s heat and hydration related…
66th over: Bangladesh 182-5 (Mushfiqur 34, Sabbir 46)
Sabbir continues to manipulate Australia’s spinners into gaps, Lyon this time worked for two, one and then four into awkward to defend spaces. He has an exceptional sweep played with powerful forearms, and it’s that stroke that earns him his boundary. Australia need to dig deep here late in the day in the heat.
Peter Salmon is on Adam’s ‘Bec’ Cartwright bandwagon:
Hi Jonathan, just wanted to add my weight to the push for Hilton Cartwright’s nickname being ‘Bec’ (over 59). I’ve done a quick Wiki search of the name, and it appears that she is indeed the most famous Cartwright going, although I’m sure both Fairfax Leighton Cartwright (the British ambassador to Austria Hungary from 1911 to 1913) and Edmund Cartwright (inventor of the power loom in 1784) had their fans back in the day. So can we lock that in as his nickname, home and away?
Am I too late to the party to suggest anyone with the first name Hilton should be immediately nicknamed Paris?
65th over: Bangladesh 174-5 (Mushfiqur 33, Sabbir 39)
Sniff for Australia as Sabbir attacks Agar over extra cover and it only just clears the fingertips of the leaping Glenn Maxwell. Clear him it does though and four more is added to the scoreboard.
Excellent graphic from the broadcaster reveals the strike points for both batsmen – Mushfiqur a long way back, Sabbir a long way forward. Shows clearly how much a little strike rotation can make life awkward for the bowlers.
Raymond Reardon joins in with a delightful witticism following an earlier post of Adam’s:
Adam, I notice that you said that they were celebrating Eid in Bangladesh, but they are not adhering to normal celebrations by killing a goat. Instead the GOAT is slaughtering them.
64th over: Bangladesh 169-5 (Mushfiqur 33, Sabbir 34)
Another over of Lyon bowling around the wicket to the right-handers. Not much doing beyond a couple of singles.
I think that’s a fair assessment. Lyon bowled a heap of deliveries in the first innings in Dhaka that were just too good – spun way too far to hit – yet here, just a little deviation has bought him four innocuous LBWs.
63rd over: Bangladesh 167-5 (Mushfiqur 32, Sabbir 33)
Agar continues but he’s now up against two reasonably set batsmen on a fair surface late on a hot day. So set in fact that a few shared singles brings up the first 50-partnership of the innings. Excellent batting from these two, and a sign of where the home side’s heads really should have been at much earlier.
Meanwhile, in more sophisticated bangers and mash news:
62nd over: Bangladesh 163-5 (Mushfiqur 31, Sabbir 30)
Nathan Lyon resuming his excellent day from around the wicket to the right-handed Mushfiqur. The Bangladesh skipper is playing Lyon from the crease, which is getting the fielders excited, either side of a clubbed thwump of a sweep for two towards midwicket.
61st over: Bangladesh 161-5 (Mushfiqur 29, Sabbir 30)
Agar to bowl the first over after Tea, around the wicket to the right-handed Sabbir. It’s all on a good line and length for three deliveries, including a hefty shout for LBW, after which Sabbir sashay’s down the track and lofts the ball over mid-on for a comfortable four. A thick edge just wide of slip earns him another couple.
In ominous achey-brakey news, Pat Cummins has not come out to field after lunch; the objet d’art otherwise known as Jackson Bird is proving he’s (just a little bit) more than a touring net bowler.
Back to Bangers & Mash…
According to Wikipedia, it was narrated by actor Jonathan Kydd, whose career highlight was providing the voiceover to THE Ferrero Rocher commercial. Today is a good day.
The over-rate is ball perfect so far, meaning we’re scheduled for 30 in the final session and so should end around two hours from now – weather permitting. Speaking of which, it has been mercifully dry considering how sodden it’s been leading up to this Test.
Thanks Adam – enjoy your stint on the telly!
Another beautifully poised Test is in store for us. I’d argue Australia have their noses in front courtesy of some persistent bowling and lackadaisical Bangladesh batting. This is a decent surface, Australia only have one seamer, but until the last half hour or so before Tea the home side lacked urgency, allowing the game to drift too often.
They’ll still enjoy bowling last, but will Australia have much of a target to chase?
Anyway, onto Tea break time-wasting… Since the first Test and the (in my opinion) over-the-top reaction from some of the red tops to Australia’s defeat I haven’t been able to get a certain TV theme song out of my head. For some reason, when getting irate in print, it’s impossible to call Bangladesh their full name, and so it’s often shortened to Bangas or Bangers.
Does anybody else remember this late 80s, early 90s classic? Clearly most notable for the Chas and Dave masterpiece of a theme tune.
TEA: 155-5 (Mushfiqur 29, Sabbir 24)
60th over: Bangladesh 155-5 (Mushfiqur 29, Sabbir 24)
Oh, cancel my last post, Bec is on! Cartwright operating with Wade up to the pegs. It’s very friendly and floaty first up, Sabbir leaning into the easiest boundary he will score today, a full-toss through cover. Two catching midwickets in place, but not required, Mushfiqur getting his chance and not missing, a boundary scored with a dashing cover drive. Half-volley nearly, but he really pinned the ears back. Not the best way for Australia to move to tea.
Two wickets and 85 runs across the 30.2 over session. Australia didn’t do much wrong until that last over, Agar especially good. He picked up the big wicket of the stanza, winning Shakib’s edge with one that shot through beautifully from around the wicket. Earlier, Lyon collected his fourth leg before decision of the day.
But in the last hour and a bit, the two incumbents added 38 and didn’t give a chance. A couple of top edges that could have proved problematic, but neither went to hand. On the whole, some aggressive strokeplay from Sabbir and solid defence from the captain Mushfiqur. Has to go on with it now.
Righto. That’s me done for now. As noted before, I’m handballing to JP Howcroft who will see you through to stumps. Thanks for your company as always. Look forward to doing it again tomorrow.
59th over: Bangladesh 146-5 (Mushfiqur 25, Sabbir 19)
Cummins to bowl the penultimate over before tea. He does the short/full set up to Mushfiqur as he did last over, albeit without the slower balls this time. Lot of ooh and aah about the ‘keeper and captain. Must be a decent pace.
On White Line Wireless they are after a nickname for Hilton Cartwright, who is yet to bowl today. I’ve been calling him Bec (to myself) all week. Pretty keen on that. Also, Rory. As in former Richmond footballer Rory Hilton. You have JP Howcroft with you after tea, I’m sure he will embrace this.
58th over: Bangladesh 146-5 (Mushfiqur 25, Sabbir 19)
Agar has been outstanding in this spell, at either end. Sabbir has been trying to take on the Australian spinners, but can’t do so here with Agar landing in a shoebox with ample flight, but then skidding from the same length with considerable pace. Maiden. Another classy one.
57th over: Bangladesh 146-5 (Mushfiqur 25, Sabbir 19)
Cummins really charging in hard here. Massive job as the only seamer at Smith’s disposal. Able to take his time to get through the over; they’ll be well ahead of the rate by stumps. He’s short of a length then full to Mushfiqur. Handles it well, gets off strike with a clip. Tries a couple of slower balls, the second of which prompts an error, Sabbir top-eding high… but doesn’t carry to the deep backward sqaure fielder. Always eventful when Pat Cummins is on.
56th over: Bangladesh 144-5 (Mushfiqur 24, Sabbir 18)
Agar spun around to the northern end for the first time today, replacing Lyon. He’s been the best of the Aussie tweakers in this middle session. Taken for a couple first up though, Mushfiqur benefitting around the corner. The West Australian into the groove soon enough, getting the Bangladesh captain on the pad with one that again doesn’t spin. But going too far with the arm to be given. Another behind square keeps him on strike next over.
55th over: Bangladesh 141-5 (Mushfiqur 21, Sabbir 18)
Cummins for his fourth burst for the day. Had a spell on the bench after the last one to cool down a bit. Stinking hot. Didn’t see this coming when we woke up this morning, fair to say. Rained a lot yesterday, into the night. Sabbir looking to score through the drive at the start and end of the over. He’s timing them beautifully, to go with his bravado. Finds the fielder first time, beats the ring out to point to finish. They’ve put on 24, which isn’t much, but came at an important time after Shakib fell. 18 minutes to the tea break. Essential that one of these two are still batting at stumps for the locals to win the day from here.
54th over: Bangladesh 139-5 (Mushfiqur 21, Sabbir 16)
Sabbir, dancing the last couple of overs, is ramping now. Fair play to him for having a go. Mushfiqur uses soft enough hands to roll one down to third man for a couple before playing out the rest of the Lyon over. Unflustered. He’s had a wonderful 2017, averaging 71 so far. Didn’t reach 50 in either innings last week, but is laying a foundation to do so here today.
“Pretty disappointed he didn’t get a second look Khawaja didn’t get a second look in,” emails Dave Kalucy. “I always suspected him of doing something superb, a kind of wild card DJ that would make you go out on a rainy Tuesday night.. but as we have so many in form batsmen on the continent at the moment.” Instead, the punter left on the dancefloor at stumps pleading for one more song, but the lights are on and everyone is looking for a kebab.
53rd over: Bangladesh 136-5 (Mushfiqur 19, Sabbir 15)
Down the pitch to begin, Sabbir has plenty of pluck about him, driving one down the ground. Mushfiqur returning to the defensive posture that has defined his 55-ball stay so far. Confident to meet the ball near enough to where it pitches rather than going back. More good batting from the captain.
52nd over: Bangladesh 135-5 (Mushfiqur 19, Sabbir 14)
SIX! To begin the Lyon over, as you Sabbir! Down the track and over the long-on rope. Not the best contact, but he tried to put it on the moon, just clearing Cartwright. Wouldn’t have been popular had he holed out there. One to backward square next ball, which ruins what I planned to say. That is, I am told in Bangladesh cricket there is nothing more highly regarded than a batsman defending the ball after hitting a six. Defend is what Mushfiqur does, with Lyon around the wicket. Good comeback from the man with four wickets.
51st over: Bangladesh 128-5 (Mushfiqur 19, Sabbir 7)
Agar to Mushfiqur. Back to back maidens. It’s another good one too. Shooting quicker, the captain just getting his blade down in time. Spinning hard, just enough bat for it to go to ground rather than to hand. Nice contest.
50th over: Bangladesh 128-5 (Mushfiqur 19, Sabbir 7)
Lyon short to begin, pull/sweeping by Mushfiqur to backward square leg, a sweeper out there. A pweel? A swull? Forget about that though, a crunching square drive from Sabbir. Beautifully timed. Not a long of footwork, but doesn’t need to be when you can hit it that well. Breaks it up a bit for the locals. But Lyon straight back to his mark, Sabbir coming a long way down the track to defend. Quality cricket.
A lot of interest in the local beer here. Remind you of anything? Hunter: Bangladeshi for Beer.
49th over: Bangladesh 123-5 (Mushfiqur 18, Sabbir 3)
Quality maiden from Agar. Sabbir starts out aggressively, trying to come down and score through cover. Doesn’t beat the ring. But he doesn’t take the bait of a bit more air, lunging forward to negate the spin.
48th over: Bangladesh 123-5 (Mushfiqur 18, Sabbir 3)
No surprise that the wicket prompts a return of Nathan Lyon to the bowling crease from the broadcast or northern end. Wade loves it, telling Sabbir that he’s going to nick one. Comes after Mushfiqur gets busy to begin, two guided behing point, another swept to midwicket. Caaaaatch! is the call to the penultimate delivery, Mushfiqur again sweeping but getting a top edge. Doesn’t quite get to Renshaw running around at backward square. He was slow on it, which didn’t help.
47th over: Bangladesh 119-5 (Mushfiqur 14, Sabbir 2)
Couple to fine leg first ball gets Sabbir out of the blocks. Agar, around the wicket now, keeps him honest with the final delivery of the set.
WICKET! Shakib c Wade b Agar 24 (Bangladesh 117-5)
Agar back and into the book with a huge wicket! The man with more runs than all bar three other players in 2018 has edged the spinner off the back foot, another victim to one that doesn’t spin. Clever from the tall left-armer to stay around the wicket, even if it took a few balls to find his spot. Big moment in the context of the game, Shakib looking ready to really take advantage. And well done Matt Wade, who didn’t have long to adjust his gloves to the left but did it well.
46th over: Bangladesh 112-4 (Shakib 20, Mushfiqur 14)
Last one to drinks. Pat Cummins was off for a tic there, but due to being bloody hot rather than any injury, I’m reliably informed. Shakib cuts a couple off his stumps from Maxwell, easily enough. Defends the rest. Drinks. Australia took the first 30, Bangladesh the second, if breaking it down to that extent.
James Crane on the email from Glasgow with a picture out his office window. Must admit, keep forgetting it is Monday. “I don’t think I could much further away from you,” he says. “Anyone care to raise the Meh stakes?”
45th over: Bangladesh 110-4 (Shakib 18, Mushfiqur 14)
Not the most absorbing cricket, but this is why O’Keefe has been turned to. Got through 77 overs at Ranchi in one of the longest marathons in Test history. Mushfiqur does well to get across his stumps and take one behind square. The spinners misses the mark later in the set, down legside, missing everything including Wade’s gloves. Only one bye, though.
44rd over: Bangladesh 108-4 (Shakib 18, Mushfiqur 13)
“I like how he’s pushing those boys!” Wade is into Maxwell’s off-spin as well. I’m convinced they have turned the stump mic up on the TV coverage compared to last week. To be fair, the skipper is textbook, well forward and dropping in front of him. Singles for both along the way.
43rd over: Bangladesh 106-4 (Shakib 17, Mushfiqur 10)
O’Keefe with one of his stock-standard 60-second overs. He does that well. Throwing it up to Mushfiqur, drawing him forward. “Ooooh, that’s so close!” Wade’s verdict, when the final delivery again gets the Bangladesh skipper well down the track in defence. At home on the couch watching a week ago, operating in a vital Test Match now. And he loves it.
42nd over: Bangladesh 104-4 (Shakib 17, Mushfiqur 10)
Maxwell! Didn’t see that coming. Given a roll to replace Nathan Lyon, who has earned a spell. He got a vital breakthrough on the opening day at Dhaka, so it stands to reason to try it on again. To Shakib, he’s giving it some air. Eventually driven for one. He won’t mind that. Rahim does likewise, to long-on. Good start from the biggest show in town.
41st over: Bangladesh 102-4 (Shakib 16, Mushfiqur 9)
Had to do without wifi for a few minutes there, so we’ll just say that both batsmen took a single off Sok and leave it at that. “Given that the double century was in his last test, Dizzy Gillespie must have also taken his 259th wicket here,” writes Peter Salmon. Bloody good point.
40th over: Bangladesh 100-4 (Shakib 15, Mushfiqur 8)
Quick single required to get Shakib down the other end, Lyon going everything right here, so close to going past his inside edge with the previous ball. Mushfiqur retains the strike with a a pull shot to midwicket. Doesn’t get much of it, so it is collected. 100 up with that shot. They were going alright in the lead up to lunch, but wickets either side of the break put Australia clearly ahead early at this stage.
39th over: Bangladesh 98-4 (Shakib 14, Mushfiqur 7)
Both players looking to score off O’Keefe, ticking the board over to the first four balls of the over, square of the wicket then down the ground, no risks there. A hack to mid-on isn’t that pretty, but does the job. Sok pushes the second last one through, nearly beating the bat. Hands on heads. But he’s through it safely.
A lot of love for Nathan Lyon on the World Wide Web.
38th over: Bangladesh 93-4 (Shakib 12, Mushfiqur 4)
I’m transfixed by the Wade soundtrack. He sure loves keeping to Nathan Lyon. Noooooooice. Shakib gets him down the ground and Lyon isn’t thrilled, half a hint of a misfield there I think. Mushfiqur forced onto the back foot with a quicker one, then drawn forward with the flighted alternative. Peak of his powers today, Lyon.
37th over: Bangladesh 92-4 (Shakib 11, Mushfiqur 4)
“Steve O’Keefe’s ’s back and you’re gonna be in trouble (Hey-la-day-la O’Keefe is back).” That he is, from the pavilion end. Going around the wicket to left-hander Shakib. Interesting approach. Quick single to cover gets Mushfiqur down the business end. He responds well, slapping a half-volley through the covers to get off the mark.
36th over: Bangladesh 87-4 (Shakib 10, Mushfiqur 0)
“Nice, Garry!” rings out time and again through the stump mic. Wade nearly lost his spot after Dhaka, but not his voice. It’s a comforting soundtrack. Shakib, looking at Lyon here, takes one to point when there’s a fraction width. But the offie is back on the stumps to Mushfiqur. He’s been so accurate today. “Gee that’s close, Garry!” roars Wade as the over ends.
35th over: Bangladesh 86-4 (Shakib 9, Mushfiqur 0)
Cummins did his bit to dot it up the previous over. Bowling in partnerships, as BJ says on the telly. He continues around the wicket to Shakib, who gets across his stumps to take one fine. Captain Mushfiqur to face his first ball, nice and straight. It’s thrown back at the batsman, it deflects off his bat. They could run, but they don’t. Cummins is such a nice boy that he apologises for throwing it. Inside edge saves the home skipper next up. Nearly another leg before. First time in a Test that the top four for Bangladesh have been dismissed lbw, the TV tells me as well.
WICKET! Mominul lbw b Lyon 31 (Bangladesh 85-4)
Australia has four and they are all lbw Lyon! What a scorecard! This, to Mominul, two balls after being cut for four, skids on with the arm again from around the wicket. Identical to a couple of the others in he quartet. This is how Australian sides usually collapse themselves in this part of the world, with cagey local spinners passing the inside edge. Well, Lyon’s that man today. And he is now moves to 7th for most Test wickets taken by an Australian. 260 all up. What a series he is having.
34rd over: Bangladesh 85-4 (Shakib 8, Mushfiqur 0)
33rd over: Bangladesh 81-3 (Mominul 27, Shakib 8)
Shakib more conservative this time around. Cummins angling in from around the wicket with just the one slip in place. A tidy maiden.
“Do you happen to have the link to the Aussie boys that were doing audio comms on this game? Think you posted something during the 1st Test,” asks James Crane. That would be White Line Wireless. I’ll link them up below. “I will, of course, continue to follow your OBO coverage!” Thank you. The OBO works neatly with all other commentaries.
You can talk to me too, if course. See the above for the email and twitter details. Hit me up. Tell me a story. Been to Chittagong? Ever been in Bangladesh during Eid? I tell you what, that was an experience. Went for a walk on Saturday morning and won’t forget it for the rest of my life.
32nd over: Bangladesh 81-3 (Mominul 27, Shakib 8)
Another useful over for Mominul, looking to score off the pads, but eventually getting a couple with a drive past cover. One of five left-hander in the Bangladesh top six. In for a quick, which makes perfect sense given the state of the series andhow little the local seamers were required in Dhaka. Has a classy record, and three of his five Test tons on this very ground.
31st over: Bangladesh 79-3 (Mominul 25, Shakib 8)
Cummins from the southern end, to start his third spell. Deserved to be in the book earlier when Maxwell put Tamim down at third slip. That’s another small but noteworthy element to the team changes: Khawaja has been doing well at third slip since returning to the team. Anyway, he was out shortly thereafter so no big deal. Mominul rotates the strike down the ground to give Shakib a look at the Aussie speedster. And he likes what he sees, launching into a lavish cover drive. That’ll do nicely. And he does it again to end the over! Sees width, loves width, slays width. Lovely square drive. That’s got the crowd involved. Perfect re-start for the hosts.
30th over: Bangladesh 70-3 (Mominul 24, Shakib 0)
New man Shakib, the vital wicket in this Bangladesh middle order, pats the first couple away. Lyon right back on the mark, as he was throughout the opening session. No major spin expected here early due to the clay composition, as it was explained to me by the curator. At Mirpur, it was the softer black clay, here it’s brown. Hard as a rock. Part of the reason Smith expected a lot more first innings runs coming into the match.
Thank you, Sam. A smashing stint from you to begin the Test. I’m taking over from the Northern End here at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. The press box to be precise. Not a lot to add to Sam’s lunch wrap other than to say it is a smashing day outside. Hot and humid, so not smashing for those in the heat. But given the rain we’ve been nailed with since landing in Chittagong, this will do just fine.
On the field, my main point of interest for now is that Nathan Lyon has dined on 259 Test wickets, taking him to equal seventh all-time for Australian bowlers. He goes past Jason Gillespie with his next, at the ground where he made the least-likely double ton in the history of the game the last time the baggy greens were here. Nice, ay?
Righto. Players on the field. Lyon has the ball, with two balls to come in the over after grabbing Soumya to go to the break. PLAY.
Lunch – Bangladesh 70-3
It was Australia’s session, and they can thank their opening bowler, Nathan Lyon, for doing the majority of the damage. The first spinner to open the bowling in the first innings for Australia since Bill O’Reilly in 1938 mixed his flight and pace with aplomb to land three crucial wickets – all LBW – to give Australia three wickets for the session.
Ably supported by Pat Cummins, who bowled with serious venom on an otherwise unhelpful wicket for quicks, Lyon was largely unerring in his round-the-wicket attack. Given how fresh this match is, it’s hard to say how valuable these three wickets are – though early indications are that the pitch will play a little more truly than it did in Dhaka, which would render Lyon’s contribution here even greater.
For their part, Bangladesh were a little tentative in their approach throughout the session, and allowed Lyon and O’Keefe in particular to slow the scoring and build significant pressure. Only when they counter-punched did they ask a few questions of Australia, and they may need to be a little more positive if they’re to exert some pressure back on Australia’s bowlers.
Even so, the partnership between Mominul and Shakar was starting to look quite fruitful until Shakar’s lunch-triggering dismissal. It brings Shakib to the crease and in doing so Bangladesh’s two most dynamic batsmen to the crease.
It’s an early point to Australia here, but there’s a long way to go. You’ll have Adam Collins up next to take you through the intrigue and, hopefully, not the weather outlook. It’s looking surprisingly good so far.
Thanks for joining me today – I’ll see (read) you tomorrow.
WICKET! Sarkar lbw Lyon 33 – Bangladesh 70-3
Lyon’s done it again! Huge wicket heading into lunch here as Lyon strikes. We’ve seen this scene before. The ball curves in from around the wicket, the batsman stuck on the crease, and the ball his Sarkar’s front pad, then back pad, before he’s given out. Sarkar thinks about the review before deciding against it, and rightly so. That brings on lunch, and Lyon’s late intervention hands the session to Australia.
Some thoughts to follow.
29th over: Bangladesh 69-2 (Sarkar 33, Mominul 23)
Agar tries to pin Mominul on the crease and nearly sneaks through his defences on a few occasions, but the batsman is up to the task. Smith approaches Agar after a few balls for a discussion, and it seems to conjure something as Mominul just survives one that he tries to force – it rolls just past his stumps. There’s a muted appeal for a catch in close at the end of the over. Lunch approaching as Lyon takes the ball.
28th over: Bangladesh 69-2 (Sarkar 33, Mominul 23)
The partnership is up to 49 now as Bangladesh climb themselves back to parity, while Lyon remains tight throughout this over. The taller Sarkar is less of a sweeping threat than Mominul, but conversely offers less risk of dismissal because he’s less willing to play across the line. Mominul got the early single and the rest is defended.
27th over: Bangladesh 69-2 (Sarkar 33, Mominul 23)
Agar’s is too straight at the start of this over – he concedes a few to Mominul’s eager sweeping, before Agar overcorrects and Momimul uses his wonderful wrists to snap the ball through cover for three. Both shots were well reeled in by Renshaw and Cartwright respectively. Shouldn’t be long before lunch now.
26th over: Bangladesh 64-2 (Sarkar 33, Mominul 18)
Lyon’s largely quick and flat to Mominul this over, and after a stalemate Mominul attempts a risky sweep to one spearing in to the stumps. It just collects his bat and he gets a single for it, not before Wade(y) lets him know it was close with a big ‘OHH!’. The net result is two to Bangladesh.
25th over: Bangladesh 62-2 (Sarkar 32, Mominul 17)
It’s Agar into the attack now – interesting to contrast his tall, upright action against O’Keefe’s low, slingy style of delivery. He doesn’t seem to give the ball as much action out of the fingers – it’s a little less violent – but he does find a little bit of spin in his first over. Like SOK, he’s around the wicket to the left-handers. He overpitches his last ball and concedes two for his troubles.
24th over: Bangladesh 59-2 (Sarkar 31, Mominul 15)
Lyon’s back into the attack and he’s still asking questions. He’s got Mominul hovering back in his crease and the left hander under edges one that bounces perilously close to the stumps. As we approach lunch, which is 15 minutes away, you feel a wicket for Australia would put them in decent control – whereas if the Tigers can weather this, they’d take two-down as a successful session. Mominul picks up two at the end of the over behind point.
23rd over: Bangladesh 56-2 (Sarkar 30, Mominul 13)
Oh! Vicious stuff from Cummins here. Midway through the over he lids Mominul – right in the grill – with a fearsome bouncer. The ball pops up and looks briefly like a catching opportunity, but falls short of midwicket anyway. The replays never look pretty with these ones. He’s full after that and has Mominul playing uppishly from the crease through midwicket, before the latter pulls him firmly (with courage, I should add) to the man at deep square leg.
Graham, who’s emailed, talks sense here:
“Given the spinners are going to shoulder the burden here,” he says, “you would have to wonder why we have Cartwright. Surely we need an extra specialist bat is required for the inevitable collapse to be at least held at bay.”
Cartwright is a project player, it seems. If he’s not going to bowl, I fail to see how he is the country’s next best batsman after Khawaja.
22nd over: Bangladesh 53-2 (Sarkar 28, Mominul 12)
O’Keefe is left arm round the wicket to two left-handers here, creating an odd angle, but one that works for him. The first one gets a lucky outside edge for two, and the second slides past Mominul’s bat as he attempts to cut. From thereon it’s a little better for Mominul – he finds runs behind point via a little dab and defends the rest.
21st over: Bangladesh 49-2 (Sarkar 28, Mominul 8)
Cummins adopts a straighter line here, and after Sarkar gets a single, Mominul looks well organised in his forward defence. A beautiful cover drive ends the over; it would have been four but for the diving, outstretched hand of Australia’s cover fieldsman, who I’ve not been able to identify.
20th over: Bangladesh 47-2 (Sarkar 27, Mominul 7)
So it’s Lyon who’s ultimately removed and O’Keefe will have a go from his end. He’s not quite as accurate as his predecessor here, and Mominul comes down the wicket and heaves him over midwicket for four to finish the over. Whereas they bogged themselves down earlier, the Tigers are showing a little bit more aggression now.
Meanwhile, Raymond has a proposal:
“With most Test matches decided by the toss of the coin,” he says, “is it time to bring about more even series and hence more excitement, despite the recent wins of Bangladesh and the West Indies, by having the toss of the coin for the first Test match and the losing captain of the first toss gets to have the choice of batting/bowling first in the second Test ? The third Test would then revert to a toss of the coin and the losing toss Captain would have a choice in any fourth Test and so on where the odd numbered Test would be decided by the toss of a coin.This, I believe, will reduce the number of one sided series and increase anticapation and partipation in Test cricket when it is facing competition from the shorter forms of the game.”
I have to think about this.
19th over: Bangladesh 41-2 (Sarkar 26, Mominul 2)
So Cummins, who was outstanding in his first spell, returns to try and wreak a little more havoc here. He manages to find Sarkar’s leading edge but the ball loops to midwicket safely. He gets one for it which brings the newly-free-scoring Sarkar on strike. Sarkar immediately tries to pull a short one from Cummins through square-leg but only finds the man at forward square. Impressive swivel, though. Later on he times a punch from the back foot very nicely for two more. He’s starting to ‘look pretty good’, as they say.
18th over: Bangladesh 37-2 (Sarkar 22, Mominul 2)
He’s a little quicker this over, Lyon, likely a result over the biffing he received last over. He shouldn’t be too discouraged though, as he’s managing to extract the odd bit of variable bounce that creates problems. Mominul receives the bulk of his offerings and deals with them all with resolute defence.
Cummins is back on.
17th over: Bangladesh 36-2 (Sarkar 21, Mominul 2)
Four singles off this over sees Mominul off the mark and Sarkar continue his recent scoring pace. Both batsmen have removed the sense of a gradual strangle with their enterprise, and all of a sudden the bowling doesn’t look quite as threatening as it did a few overs back. Still, it only takes one mistake, doesn’t it?
16th over: Bangladesh 32-2 (Sarkar 19, Mominul 0)
Sarkar has removed the shackles from his feet, and twice he dances down the wicket to Lyon – he hits him once through the covers for four, and the second time he lofts him over mid-on for six. It’s a counter-punch for Bangladesh and might cause both spinners to think twice before employing such flight again.
15th over: Bangladesh 22-2 (Sarkar 9, Mominul 0)
O’Keefe keeps the pressure on, though Sarkar is showing greater willingness to use his feet. Handscomb wears one at short leg from a strongly whipped shot, while another rears at Wade who takes the ball excellently, it must be said.
14th over: Bangladesh 21-1 (Sarkar 8, Mominul 0)
Mominul sees out the rest of the post-drinks over though not before an under edge that bounces to Wade from his first ball. Ooh’s and ahh’s everywhere.
WICKET! Kayes lbw Lyon 4 – Bangladesh 21-2
Lyon produces another excellent straight one to Kayes and, after a daring review from Australia, Bangladesh’s number three is gone! Initially turned down by umpire Llong, Smith went out on a limb under decided to review. Even Lyon gestured for an inside edge before Smith challenged anyway, and he was proved correct. It was a misguided sweep from Kayes who ended in a mess of his own making, and Australia have another wicket. That’ll be drinks.
13th over: Bangladesh 20-1 (Sarkar 7, Kayes 4)
O’Keefe has settled back into the rhythm of Test cricket well here. There’s a few singles from the over, but he’s otherwise building the sort of pressure we saw he and Lyon build in India. Late in the over Sarkar tries to loft him over midwicket, but an inside edge squeezes the ball to square leg for one.
12th over: Bangladesh 18-1 (Sarkar 6, Kayes 3)
Australia might roll through some overs here. It’s a quick maiden from Lyon who’s trying to lock Sarkar into his crease before tossing one up mid over that Sarkar deals with well enough. The Tigers might need to take some initiative here lest they be strangled into another mistake.
11th over: Bangladesh 18-1 (Sarkar 6, Kayes 3)
O’Keefe comes round the wicket to the left hander upon his unexpected return to Test cricket, and immediately attacks the stumps with his flighted orthodox. Does it say anything that he was introduced before Agar? Probably that Smith regards him as his second spinner. Both Sarkar and Kayes collect singles respectively and SOK is back.
10th over: Bangladesh 15-1 (Sarkar 4, Kayes 9)
Following his wicket, Lyon flights the remainder of his deliveries to Kayes and extracts some bounce in the process. At one stage the new batsman is back trying to pull one that’s probably a little full – but he collects two for it and will be happy to be off the mark. A successful over for Lyon and Australia; looks like it will be Steven O’Keefe from the other end.
WICKET! Iqbal lbw Lyon 9 – Bangladesh 13-1
Lyon gets the wicket! It’s one that goes straight on for him, and it catches Iqbal’s pad after beating the inside edge of his bat. Umpire Llong has no hesitation in giving it and Iqbal is on his way. Maxwell’s miss doesn’t end up too problematic for Australia either.
9th over: Bangladesh 13-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 9)
It’s been a great spell for Cummins so far, as he flies past the outside edge on a couple of occasions here too. First is via a wild, forgiveable slash from Iqbal, who has been so-far subdued by Cummins – and the second by Sarkar who left his bat outside his body, fishing for one that thankfully missed.
8th over: Bangladesh 12-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 8)
Lyon flies through this one with a mixture of flighted and speared deliveries, all bowled to Sarkar, who plays him from the crease.
7th over: Bangladesh 12-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 8)
First ball is Cummins to Iqbal and he’s dropped! It’s Maxwell who put him down. Cummins directed one short of a length and Iqbal – once again squared up – succeeds only in gaining a thick outside edge to it. Maxwell juggles it before putting it down, and he should have taken it. Smith kicks the turf in frustration. Later on Iqbal finds two runs through the on-side after Cummins is a little too straight, but that’s a huge let-off for the Tigers here and an opportunity missed for Australia.
6th over: Bangladesh 10-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 6)
A very fast maiden here from Lyon, who – in the absence of much spin right now – is varying his flight quite well. Sarkar defends him primarily from the back foot, and is watchful in doing so. Handscomb sits waiting at short-leg in the eternal squat position (and a beautifully straight back, I must say). It ends the way it began – a well-directed ball is defended. ‘Nice, Garry,’ coos Wade.
5th over: Bangladesh 10-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 6)
Ooh! Just as I was commenting on the ball travelling through at waist height, Cummins digs one in that viciously strikes Iqbal on the shoulder. He took his eyes off it, his gloves were in the vicinity and it lobbed to Maxwell at third slip. The Australians appealed but umpire Gould rightly shook his head. He hits a more conventional line and length otherwise and Iqbal wisely leaves him alone.
4th over: Bangladesh 10-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 6)
Lyon is probing already, making the spinning triumvirate all the more understandable. He’s around the wicket to the left-hander curving the ball in and at one point finds Iqbal’s outside edge; it rolls behind square for a couple. Later, the Australians appeal for one that strikes Iqbal’s pad, but he’d strode further down the wicket than Dean Jones in his early 90s ODI pomp. Another testing over.
3rd over: Bangladesh 5-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 1)
Despite the benign pitch (for quicks), Cummins looks quick here. Iqbal is rushing to arrange himself for the arrival of each Cummins delivery, but eventually finds a single via a safe-ish leading into the vacant cover region. The over takes a while as there’s a bit of movement behind the bowler’s arm, and it finishes with Cummins maintaining an appreciably good line. Still, nothing is getting above the batsmen’s waist. When they’re coming at 140km+, it tells you something about the properties of the wicket.
A thought on Australia’s XI from Murray. “Not that I observe close enough to be a selector,” says Murray, “but I’d have kept Khawaja and replaced Wade with Handscombe as keeper – since it was too quick to get Neville or someone else over – and gotten another batsmen in there, because that’s where we fell down in the first test.”
Handscomb as keeper is a bit of a double-edged sword – the good edge being the creation of an open field for the first Test v England in Brisbane. Otherwise, it’s surely unsustainable.
2nd over: Bangladesh 4-0 (Sarkar 4, Iqbal 0)
Nathan Lyon to take the new ball. Repeat, Nathan Lyon to take the new ball. It’s the first time Australia have opened the bowling in the first innings with a spinner since 1938, when Bill O’Reilly was steaming in at Trent Bridge. Predictably, the new ball renders the ball fairly slippery off the wicket, and it explains one that slips past Sarkar’s inside edge and onto his pad, prompting a big appeal from those close in. The next ball, Sarkar inside edge’s an attempted cut and it hurtles through Wade’s legs for four. It wasn’t a chance for the keeper, however, as the angle of the ball from the edge was too acute for him to make any reasonable adjustment to. A testing over from Australia’s new opening bowler.
1st over: Bangladesh 0-0 (Sarkar 0, Iqbal 0)
So it’s Cummins to start, and his first one is a rank loosener so full that the stump microphone picks up a deep thud of the ball on the popping crease at the batsman’s end. From there he’s excellent though, his second one squares up Iqbal and flies past his outside edge. Australia have the regulation three slips, but let’s also be honest, there’s probably an over or two of juice to exploit for Cummins here. Despite great pace that almost sneaks under Iqbal’s bat late in the over, Wade is otherwise taking the ball at knee-height.
Lyon to open from the other end!
‘We’ll have a bat’
Who opens the bowling?
One for the lovers of cricketing novelty here. The candidates would be Lyon, O’Keefe, Agar, and Cartwright I’m guessing. Funnily enough, Matt Wade is probably the quickest of the remaining players at 130kph
Some creative categorisation of players from Quentin here, but you get his point.
A thought on the Australian XI
A quick scan through Twitter (the best place to gauge the public pulse, of course) reveals the standard level of angst over the inclusion of O’Keefe ahead of Holland and other people Not From NSW. Provincialism aside, most seem to be in broad agreement that Australia must spin to win, so on principle a third spinner is the way to go.
The questions around O’Keefe’s specific inclusion have more to do with his original axing than anything, I imagine. He was excellent in India and is clearly a trusted go-to option for captain Smith. Australia will be a better prospect of 20 wickets when he’s got the ball, surely.
As for Khawaja – it’s a shame to see him struggle the way he has on these wickets, so his omission isn’t surprising. But Cartwright’s inclusion is a little perplexing though. If he doesn’t bowl, it does render him the next fully-fledged Australian batsman to join a team desperate for runs. Is he that? I suppose we’ll see.
Feel free to let me know your thoughts on the XI, provincialism or not.
First ball in five minutes.
Official XIs of both sides
For Australia, each of Smith, Maxwell and Handscomb bump up a spot to accommodate Hilton Cartwright, while Steve O’Keefe serves as a straight swap for the injured Hazlewood.
Bangladesh (Playing XI): Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Imrul Kayes, Mominul Haque, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim(w/c), Sabbir Rahman, Nasir Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Taijul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman
Australia (Playing XI): David Warner, Matt Renshaw, Steven Smith(c), Peter Handscomb, Glenn Maxwell, Hilton Cartwright, Matthew Wade(w), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Steve O’Keefe, Nathan Lyon
Bangladesh won the toss and have elected to bat
News from the toss is that Bangladesh have won the toss and have elected to bat. Interesting to note that the Tigers have replaced a seamer with a batsman – undoubtedly a reflection on the wicket, and probably made in a bid to make twenty wickets fractionally harder for Australia to attain.
Welcome to Day 1
Morning, afternoon, evening all, and welcome to the Guardian’s OBO coverage of the second Test between Bangladesh and Australia from Chittagong.
For a series many thought mightn’t go ahead mere weeks ago, it’s brilliant to consider the significance of what might eventuate in the coming days. For all the navel gazing on Australia’s XI – and we’ll get to that, and navel-gaze – the Tigers stand on the precipice here of what would be a stirring and famous series win. They were irrepressible last week, playing with verve and nous that left most sane people in no doubt that they comfortably outplayed Australia. They’ll be looking to do it again, and if the weather holds off, it’s hard to look past them as series winners. They’ve brought in batsman Mominul Haque for seamer Shaiful Islam, and are otherwise unchanged.
In contrast, the visitors have rung changes that will raise eyebrows for some, and were expected for others. As speculated, Steven O’Keefe comes in for the injured Josh Hazelwood and will for part of a spinning triumvirate with Nathan Lyon and Ashton Agar – the first we’ve seen since Dan Cullen joined Shane Warne and Stuart MacGill here in 2006. In the other change, Hilton Cartwright comes in for the stone-cold dropped Usman Khawaja’s, who’s frailties on these wickets were coldly exposed in the first Test. The selectors really like Cartwright, it seems.
Matthew Wade survives; Peter Handscomb will not keep.
On the plus side, the weather – which does look ominous both today and beyond – looks pretty good. We’re told to expect an on-off day weather-wise, but the present sun means we’ll be bringing you the result of the toss very soon.
If you want to share your thoughts, comments, criticisms, musings, and otherwise, get me on Twitter at @sjjperry, or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sam will be here shortly. In the meantime, here’s Adam Collins’ take on the first Test, and what Australia must do to avoid a series whitewash:
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