Ashes: In-form Bell foils Australia again

England batsman scores half century on opening day of second Test.

Afp July 18, 2013
After losing three early wickets, Ian Bell played a vital knock to instigate England’s recovery against Australia on the first day yesterday. PHOTO: AFP

LONDON: Ian Bell carried on from where he left off as England recovered to 183 for four at tea on yesterday’s first day of the second Ashes Test at Lord’s.

Bell, whose second innings score of 109 set up Ashes-holders England’s tense 14-run first Test win over Australia in Nottingham last week, was 62 not out after adding 99 for the fourth wicket with Warwickshire colleague Jonathan Trott (58).

Jonny Bairstow, ‘bowled’ by Peter Siddle on 21 only to be reprieved by the third umpire checking for a no-ball, was 28 not out having helped Bell compile a fifth-wicket stand, so far worth 56 runs.

Bell and Trott came together with England in dire straits at 28 for three after England captain Alastair Cook had won the toss and opted to bat on a gloriously sunny day at the ‘home of cricket’.

Trott struck 11 fours in almost giddy fashion before he became recalled Australia quick Ryan Harris’s third wicket of the innings.

England were soon three wickets down with Cook, opening partner Joe Root and dangerman Kevin Pietersen all out cheaply.

Shane Watson got the ball rolling for Australia when he brought one back into Cook’s pads to have the left-hander lbw for 12.

Harris, recalled after Australia dropped the wayward Mitchell Starc, then took two wickets in an over.

The 33-year-old, playing just the 13th Test of his injury-ravaged career and first in more than a year, then struck with the second ball of his third over when he had Root lbw for six.

Four balls later, Harris shaped a delivery up the slope which Pietersen, on two, nicked to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin. Trott and Bell  then repaired the early damage.

However,  Trott was undone by a short ball from Harris and top-edged a pull straight to  Usman Khawaja.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 19th, 2013.

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