Anderson Prevails For England On Tense Final Day
England 215 & 375 beat
Australia 280 & 296 by 14 runs
First Test, Trent Bridge
For Edgbaston 2005, Brett Lee and Michael Kasprowicz, it was a case of read Trent Bridge 2013, Brad Haddin and James Pattinson as Australia’s last-wicket pair took Australia close to, but ultimately just short of, victory in a thrilling finale to the opening Ashes Test.
2005, of course, didn’t have the DRS to add to the drama, but it was perhaps fitting that a Test in which it has provided many a talking point provided one more at the most crucial of moments.
Haddin and Pattinson came together with Australia still needing 80 and James Anderson on fire, but they stayed together until after lunch. It was then that Anderson summoned up one last effort to find the inside edge of the redoubtable Haddin’s bat - or did he?
Anderson and England only half appealed and their decision to send the not out decision upstairs to third umpire Marais Erasmus had more than a hint of desperation about it. However, after numerous replays and viewings of Hot Spot, it was decided that the faint mark that appeared on the side-on view of Haddin’s bat was enough to overrule. It was a brave decision from Erasmus, considering what had gone before, and handed England the win by 14 runs.
Haddin looked distraught, but there was no Andrew Flintoff to console him as he had done Brett Lee at Edgbaston in 2005. Instead, Haddin will be left to reflect on what a fine innings he played and the huge contribution that it made to a gripping Test match.
He began the day with Ashton Agar as his partner and with England bowling with the old ball. However, the passage of play had more than an inkling of the phoney war about it as the pair barely scored a run and England failed to take a wicket.
Alastair Cook then took the new ball and Anderson almost immediately made things happen. He dispensed with Agar, Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle within the space of eight overs to take England to the brink of victory. All three men were caught at slip by Cook - Siddle spectacularly so after he had just been dropped - as Anderson found enough movement both in the air and occasionally off the pitch.
He, though, took a breather at the end of a lengthy spell that had yielded three wickets and Cook nervously turned to Steven Finn. Haddin decided to go on the attack and took 15 off Finn’s comeback over to begin the fightback that would take his side so close. Finn’s spell lasted just two overs before he was removed; his place in the eleven for Thursday’s second Test at Lord’s seemingly now in jeopardy.
He compounded his woes by dropping a tricky chance off Haddin off the bowling of Graeme Swann shortly before the interval and the over after England had failed to take advantage of a mix-up between the two batsmen. Things were getting tense and England were desperate for lunch to arrive so they could regroup.
Regroup they did, with Anderson almost striking second ball after the break to remove Pattinson and then finally ending the crowd’s torment with the dismissal of Haddin via the third umpire. He ended the match with figures of 10 for 158 and was rightly named man of the match.
© Cricket World 2013