Australia didn’t just lose the second test match of the Investec Ashes Series at Lords, they got thumped in one of the most one-sided Ashes Tests that fans have seen in a very long time. Once again it was the likes of Ian Bell and Graeme Swann who destroyed the Aussies with bat and ball respectively, but also sensational performances by Joe Root and Tim Bresnan who cemented their places in the English team for the remainder of the series. England won by a whopping 347 runs, with 9 wickets in the match going to Graeme Swann. England now have a firm hand on the urn, barring an almost unlikely comeback from the tourists in the next three matches.
The question has quite simply got to be asked, where are the heads of the Australian batsmen? Apart from Ashton Agar, no batsman for Australia has really stood up so far in the series. Question marks over Shane Watson continue, 30 runs just isn’t enough for test match cricket at the top of the order. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t seem like the Australian batting lineup is settled at all. It’s all a far cry from the brilliant bowling that the likes of Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris have shown, if not for some brilliant centuries by Ian Bell and Joe Root, the Australians should be well on top in this series, if the batters were able to put together a decent total mind you. Not once did Australia crack 300 at Lords, no batter has gotten a century, and Michael Clarke’s hot performances with the bat from the past few seasons seem to be a forgotten entity.
However, once again it was DRS which proved to be yet another point of contention during the four day test at Lord’s. Early in his century making innings, Ian Bell edged the ball which was caught by Steve Smith in the field. Ian Bell didn’t walk, and there was a certain unsureness about just if the ball had carried or not. Replays clearly showed that Smith had just managed to get his fingers under the ball. However, the third umpire made the decision that Ian Bell was not out, and we all know what score Bell would go on to make.
There are two discussions that need to be had during the next week before Manchester. Firstly what needs to be done in this Australian side to be competitive with the bat. The Ashes will be hard to win now for Australia, they would have to win the remaining three Test matches. But clearly, the ICC need to take a long serious look at DRS because right now it’s hurting the game of cricket.