England v Pakistan – 2nd Test, Day 2

In their late 80’s “hit” MC Rob Base (together with DJ EZ Rock) said it took two to make a thing go right. This England team eschew the two batting partners making big tons together, and instead make an absolute art of getting in and then getting out. Yesterday we had the reincarnation of Keaton Jennings, who did just what all other auditioning openers have done and got in and got out before getting the big score that might cement their place. Jennings, a debutant centurion, has been cleared better now by the doctors on Sky, until he fails to go on and make the big hundreds he failed to last time.

I won’t comment on Cook.

But Mr Base made many outrageous statements in his “hit” and other than saying he preferred Whoppers to Big Macs, he also said “Bro, I got an ego.” and that’s something this team is not short of. If they were anywhere near as good as they think they are, and that some of the media believe they are if they play up to form, then we’d be up there with India in the rankings. The second day’s play shows why. With a chance to bury the opposition we get flowery 40s, teasing twenties, and a nightwatchman really showing top order batsmen what to do. I’m not buying the “there’s one with your name on it” twaddle Sky Pravda puts out, but there’s some rubbish dismissals out there. Bairstow, let off an appalling leave which was going over nicks off to the last ball before the new ball is due. Root nicks off early on. Malan gets in, gets out. Bess got one that did something out of the ordinary. Botham tells Bess to enjoy the reaction he gets, while I sit there going “good on him for looking cheesed off for getting out for 49”.

It’s been a day where there hasn’t been a lot to say. Rain delayed the start until 2:45 which allowed me to catch up with the ironing – a life of glamour in the blogging world – and while I understand Nasser when he said people toss about in getting the ground ready, we all know the high regard the spectator is held in by the England Cricket Board (It’s not Wales’s fault). So before getting the hump with the ICC and the umpires, spare some rage for a board who seem to love the bottom line so much they are proposing a four day test v Ireland next July. Hey Ireland, you are second rate. Have four days. And have it at Lord’s, where half the ground is set aside for a private members club.

Back to today, England finish the day in a very good position, well ahead, in control, and should level the series with a fair wind and a half decent bowling performance. I still want my batsmen to destroy opposition, but those days seem a long long time ago now. Unless something odd happens, we’ll be nine completed test innings with just one individual century, and that was a 101. That’s not a recipe for success. One other score of 80+ and two more of 70+.

I suppose I am being harsh, because there is something in the wicket and it’s good balls getting the players out, and that’s always been much more acceptable to the cognoscenti out there. England didn’t collapse so we can be semi-happy. And two youngsters don’t look overawed.

302 for 7, a lead of 128. England in a good position. Let Broad and Shiny Toy have a bust up. This is England.

Comments on Day 3 below. I’m off to watch something entertaining this evening.


31 thoughts on “England v Pakistan – 2nd Test, Day 2

  1. metatone Jun 2, 2018 / 6:48 pm

    I do think there’s a concentration issue when no-one reaches 50, but most people get in. That said, credit to Pakistan’s bowling which has been really quite free of a weak link.

    Going to be very interesting watching England bowl tomorrow.


    • LordCanisLupus Jun 2, 2018 / 7:06 pm

      This innocuous match report, written by someone who has seen so many false dawns that you think England supporters might actually know that this mode of play isn’t a long term answer, has brought out a right old Twitter rant from someone I didn’t know cared.

      Oh, I am so sorry I can’t fake excitement. England’s football team won today, should I get excited with them for the World Cup. I want them to do well. Maybe not as much as I used to when it meant everything, but I would love Malan to establish himself with big knocks, Keaton Jennings scoring more than 23 to convince everyone, Jonny Bairstow to get the best out of his talent, Jos to become a swashbuckling lower order dynamo. And I’d love Sam Curran to be the talent we think he is. But no.

      England are winning this game. They bowled well enough and have batted well enough. If others read things into it more than that, I can’t help it. It didn’t excite me, just as when my favourite football team scrap through 90 minutes and eke out a win. You take it, but you’d much rather see them better showcase their skills.

      Liked by 1 person

      • metatone Jun 2, 2018 / 7:12 pm

        I see this comment and raise you with:

        It’s nice Dom Bess looks angry when he gets out for 49 and it’s nice that he’s scored some runs, but at some point I’d like to see him put some of that into his bowling.

        Liked by 1 person

          • metatone Jun 2, 2018 / 8:00 pm

            You win. Although technically, use of a tactical MV is a violation of the Geneva Convention.

            Liked by 2 people

        • oreston Jun 2, 2018 / 9:52 pm

          If he COULD start to take some test wickets that would be absolutely marvellous – both for the team and because he’s the sort of young cricketer you really want to succeed. Once other spin options (Leach, Amar Virdi or whoever) come into the frame there’ll potentially be a selection dilemma of the worst kind if Bess carries on batting well but does no more than hold up an end with the ball. Whatever happens he’s a much, much better selection than Mason Crane though.


      • Riverman21 Jun 2, 2018 / 8:21 pm

        Let’s groove on cos it’s time to move on…

        Liked by 1 person

          • Riverman21 Jun 3, 2018 / 7:49 am

            I always enjoy your musical references LCL.


    • LordCanisLupus Jun 2, 2018 / 7:10 pm

      No-one loves me. My days are numbered. That Twitter fellow has so upset me I’m going to cry.

      I suppose I have to do tomorrow’s now, don’t I?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sean Jun 2, 2018 / 8:07 pm

        It would be beautifully ironic if Pakistan score 450+ next time up and roll England over for under 150 in the 4th innings.

        The seething would be spectacular…

        Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Jun 2, 2018 / 8:28 pm

      The game was over after Pakistan were 78/7 post lunch on the first day, yesterday. It’s the only way England win test matches these days. (If Pakistan make 450 from here and win I will have large amounts of egg al over my face)

      The 350 plays 325 plays 280 plays………

      Doesn’t happen. It’s how England won the Ashes in 2015.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. psoans Jun 2, 2018 / 8:35 pm

    England are in a good position but could have been better. They really have not gone for the kill. I think everyone are over playing Curran’s and Bess’s role. At the end of today we have not learnt anything new. The question mark of Cook’s opening partner still remains. None of the top order have got a 50. If Bess does not get a wicket in the second innings then the problem of the spinner still stays on. I have written my view on today’s play https://soanstimes.com/2018/06/02/england-vs-pakistan-2nd-test-day-2/

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Jun 2, 2018 / 9:07 pm

      Bess has created a big problem for Ed (Pep Guardiola) Smith. He was picked by Pep for his bowling, and is now coming in at 4 (night watchman) and embarrassing the supposed top order batsman.

      Smith has picked a bowler, who is now more famous for his batting. Is that a form of plagiarism? Or a typical example of a confused Smith column? Or is it part of Smiths crazy genius of picking the square peg who turns out he fits in the round hole?

      Liked by 1 person

      • psoans Jun 2, 2018 / 9:32 pm

        Smith got lucky with Bess and Butler as far as the batting goes. Even selectors are allowed that. The world of cricket is full of examples where people started as bowlers and ended up being batsmen. It is wrong though to choose a spinner because they can bat. Smith seems to be throwing pegs, darts and probably anything he can find hoping that something will fit the holes in the English team.


      • psoans Jun 2, 2018 / 9:33 pm

        Smith got lucky with Bess and Butler as far as the batting goes. Even selectors are allowed that. The world of cricket is full of examples where people started as bowlers and ended up being batsmen. It is wrong though to choose a spinner because they can bat.


      • dlpthomas Jun 3, 2018 / 2:46 am

        Is Bess the new Mo – though not quite as good with either bat or ball? It’s a bit early for a smartarse comment like that but I do worry that we are picking bowlers based on their batting ability.


  3. d'Arthez Jun 3, 2018 / 4:58 am

    At least England found a new way of shutting up the conversion critics.


  4. jomesy Jun 3, 2018 / 8:02 am

    I do think you’re being a tad harsh on Malan but the rest is very fair.


  5. Sri.grins Jun 3, 2018 / 10:53 am

    Good for jos. As a person backing his selection happy to see him perform


  6. Sri.grins Jun 3, 2018 / 11:01 am

    England made 184 first test first innings.
    Pakistan made 174 second test first innings
    Pakistan made 363 first innings first test England made 363 first innings second test.
    England made 242. Pak should make 252 and then it will be a nice little example of a complete turnaround where numbers are very similar ☺

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Zephirine Jun 3, 2018 / 11:19 am

    Totally love the tweeted picture of Jos Buttler’s bat handle message. He’s our boy.


  8. Riverman21 Jun 3, 2018 / 11:27 am

    If they had managed to bowl the required overs per day could we be looking at back to back 3 day test matches? #ecbthinktank


  9. Grenville Jun 3, 2018 / 12:56 pm

    Obviously very disappointed by Pakistan, but I am much more disappointed by the circus. The desperate and despairing attempt to make out that this is the norm and that there is no problem with the ecb is eye gougingly awful (I also think that there is a hint of racism. The natural order of things being that England are better at proper, grown up cricket than Asian teams).

    But even leaving that aside, I watch cricket because I can’t play. It is the extraordinary expression of human potential. I have a side I want to win, but I would ratherwatch Warne con out a side or Lara destroy a strong attack on a quick wicket than Pakistan win. It is magic. The cheerleading grates and makes me feel an outsider.


  10. Sri.Grins Jun 3, 2018 / 3:32 pm

    Disappointing end after a wonderful start in the first test for Pak. Fairly young team though and quite an impressive bowling attack. Should become better over time.

    They would be disappointed though with the performance in both innings specially the second.


  11. jomesy Jun 3, 2018 / 3:38 pm

    From OBO

    The victory means England remain unbeaten at home since 2014, and sets them up nicely for the five-Test series against India later this summer. The big plusses in this series were the form of Jos Buttler, and confirmation of Stuart Broad’s return to form. He looks a very good bet to be leading wicket-taker in that India series. Dom Bess charmed just about everyone and should start the first Test against India, though his bowling is still a work in progress.


  12. metatone Jun 3, 2018 / 3:46 pm

    Sad that Pakistan imploded, but few before the series would have written off that possibility. Young team, lost some v. good bats to age.

    They should be disappointed in themselves b/c they showed they could do better in the last match and the 2nd innings implosion showed they need to work on handling pressure.

    That said, in these conditions Broad and Anderson have done it before to better line ups, so sometimes you just have to say “that’s the way it goes.” (And possibly a bad decision with the toss.)


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