Random Thoughts – Women’s Ashes Test – Day 2

Two-Hundred-And-Eighhhhhhhhhty?

Word from inside the England camp is that they were pretty happy with their 1st innings total of 280 – in the entire history of women’s Tests, only one side has ever lost after posting a higher 1st innings total – New Zealand, back in 1969. [That’s so long ago it’s before you were born… just sayin’ – Ed.]

However, England have to have been a bit disappointed that it wasn’t a few more – no blame on the tail this morning, more on the batsmen who didn’t push on yesterday.

But having now seen the Aussies bat, it is clear that maybe this pitch isn’t the road everyone thought it was, as it has actually been England who have set the pace, as the worm shows:

🎵 Walking In A Perry Wonderland 🎵

(Yes… it is stuck in my head – and if it wasn’t stuck in yours before… it is now!!)

As the chart also shows, Ellyse Perry is the key player for Australia – they only started to catch up with the run rate when she got motoring in the period leading up to the new ball. England need to get her out not once, but twice, to win this Test match – that’s the key challenge – if they can do that, they will be in with a shout.

Aussies Under Marshal Law

Laura Marsh was exceptional today – bowling at the left-handers at the top of the innings, she got into a trance-like rhythm, and then just kept it there – tick-tocking through 23 overs for just 28 runs.

Bowling props also to Sophie Ecclestone (2-51) and Georgia Elwiss. (In fact, given her figures – 5 overs, 2 maidens, 0-7 – I’m surprised Heather Knight didn’t find a few more overs for Elwiss, with Nat Sciver not really looking like she was troubling the Australians too much.)

A Tail To Tell Tomorrow?

England need just one more wicket tomorrow morning and they are into the tail, with the Aussies still currently over 100 behind. Admittedly it is a tail that includes Jess Jonassen (99 in the last Test) and Amanda Wellington (116 just the other week for South Australia in the WNCL) but if England can grab almost any first-innings lead they will rightly be pretty chuffed with that, and they will certainly be the ones sleeping easier tonight after having a winning day today.

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7 thoughts on “Random Thoughts – Women’s Ashes Test – Day 2

  1. Been a fascinating contest so far. Both days have ended with the game in the balance and the next morning’s (afternoon’s) session seeming pivotal to the outcome.
    England definitely shouldn’t lose from this position but it’s going to be tough to force a win.
    Still not convinced either team got their selection quite right.

    Looked like a great atmosphere at the ground today and good to see BT sport broadcasting the action on TV now as well as online.

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  2. I too am surprised at the England skipper not persevering with Elwiss. In spite of the fact the live steam didn’t seem to think she’d actually bowled. 5 overs for 7 last time I looked is a way many bowlers have made a living in the past. Bore them out! Attack from the other end. Might be especially effective against an attacking bat (and we have one just arrived at the crease) then revert to spin if it doesn’t work.
    Also can’t understand why, when you have a new ball, there’s only a few overs to go, and there’s a new batsman, why isn’t someone in their face? Very short mid-wicket would do for me if the bowler is aiming at the stumps. You can always retreat if it doesn’t work but a bit late to try it when they are comfortably set.
    In all forms of cricket you need to attack the new batsman first and retreat later.

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  3. Still too close to call as to which team is “winning”. England probably edging it, if only by virtue of runs on the board and Australia having to bat last. But it’s one of those games where the next session (whichever session it is) always feels as though it will be pivotal.

    The one thing I felt sure of today was that however many runs Australia scored, they would get them faster than England did, so I think England’s first two sessions yesterday grew in stature a bit today, whilst Australia were perhaps caught a little in the trap of knowing they can almost certainly live with a draw. Well though our spinners in particular bowled, I found Australia’s stodginess at times hard to fathom in any other context.

    The draw must be favourite from here, more so if Australia can bat long enough to achieve parity or a lead. We would almost certainly then be into the territory of England being the only team who could “lose” the match by batting badly second time round (a la Adelaide 2006/07). If we get to the point where England can declare and set Australia a tricky chase, we know the Aussie’s have the “shut up shop” option and should be good enough to achieve that.

    On the other hand, if we can get the Australians out before the first interval (still can’t bring myself to call them tea and dinner) tomorrow then we should have a lead of 30-ish and that might just give us enough time and overs if we do bat well.

    I see a few “boring” merchants are still doing the rounds on social media – if you find this match boring then you’re not a “cricket lover” in my book.

    Fascinating two days ahead.

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  4. Oh, and ST’s catch…

    The fact that it hasn’t been singled out in three posts on here tells you everything you need to know about the standard of her keeping. A catch like that is just “well, that’s what she does, isn’t it…”

    Just phenomenal.

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  5. Not quite sure why, according to some reports, England are favourites for this match. 200 overs in which to take 15 wickets and score a load of runs. I think the draw is favourite and the Aussies would be delighted with that result.

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