The Ashes, Second Test: Australian Player Ratings

Australia lost the second test at Lords by a whopping 347 runs and, as painful as it is, here are my ratings of the performances of Australia’s players from this game.

Chris Rogers: 4 out of 10

Two of the more bizarre dismissals I have seen in test match cricket from the man they call “Bucky” and at times when his “expertise” at Lords, given that he is the captain of Middlesex and has score a ton of runs on the ground, was needed most. Was energetic in the field.

Shane Watson: 5 out of 10

Made two starts and was again out LBW in both innings. Top scored in the first innings which was overshadowed by the DRS referral issues. Got the initial breakthrough with the ball and shouldered the workload most have been screaming for from him.

Uzman Khawaja: 6 out of 10

Terrible shot in the first innings but top scored in the second innings. Will be much better for his performance here and thrived in the pressure of the second innings till he got a ripper from J Root. Suggestions that he is a liability in the field proved false by a solid performance.

Phil Hughes: 1 out of 10

Scores of 1 and 1 so why not go with that as his rating here too. More to the point, if Watson is to be pilloried for a bad review then Hughes must be similarly pilloried for two terrible reviews.

Michael Clarke: 6 out of 10

When Clarke doesn’t score hundreds the chances of Australia winning dissipate to zero. No hundred here but a solid 50 in the second innings showed a glimpse of a return to form that is sorely needed by the team. Tactically a few question marks particularly regarding his use of Pattinson when so woefully out of form and heavy reliance on Agar when the game was gone and he was injured.

Steve Smith: 4 out of 10

Gains with the bat seen in India disappeared in this test match but his work with the ball in the first innings got Australia back in the game, albeit fleetingly.

Brad Haddin: 2 out of 10

Did not get past 10 with the bat and two gaffes with the gloves, one the most costly of all given that Joe Root was on 8. Never thought I would say it but Matthew Wade must be close to coming back in off that performance.

Ashton Agar: 2 out of 10

I commented in my preview about the potential for “second test syndrome” to strike and it certainly did in this test match. 44 overs without a wicket whilst a part timer took 4 and for the other side the spinners took 11 just not good enough for the “next big thing”.

Peter Siddle: 5 out of 10

Heart the size of Phar Lap and his spell on the afternoon of day 2 was a stirring effort. Innocuous in the first innings when Harris needed support up the other end.

James Pattinson: 2 out of 10

Went for 5 an over in the first innings and was yanked from bowling in his first two spells after 2 over and 3 over respectfully. Not good enough. Workmanlike in the second innings without being threatening. Gritty with the bat but that is not his job.

Ryan Harris: 8 out of 10

It is a measure of his performance that without it Australia would have lost by much more but for it. Was wonderful in the first innings when the other two fast bowlers in the line up did not come up with the goods. Sadly looked like he was being nursed through the second innings a bit but off the back of 3 hours rest got to expect that. 10 days break before Old Trafford vital for him.

Simply, we were beaten in all aspects of the game. Can only suggest that a massive improvement is needed and we now have 10 days to do what we need to do to make that so.

Postscript: as I am currently taking a break from twitter, please feel free to comment on this blog or at shumpty77@mail.com should you wish to have a chat about these ratings or any other blog topic.

6 responses

  1. Can’t argue with you on these ratings. I know I suggested a few tongue in cheek suggestions on how Australia can turn things around, but what would be your suggestions before the next test. Are there any real alternatives waiting as openers or wicketkeeper?

    • My suggestion would be not to change anything in either position. We are craving continuity so I think we should stick with the same team and empower them to bring us back from the abyss we are presently hovered over. I do think though that the Agar experiment has failed so Nathan Lyon must be in the frame for Old Trafford.

      • Agar is a tough one. Bringing him in and discarding him after two tests smacks of England in the 1990’s. On the other hand, keeping him too long and letting him get smacked around the park, or worse being ignored, could do real damage. I’d give him at least one more test.

      • Or even worse he has a niggling injury and is then asked too bowl too much and he gets badly hurt. That would be the worst outcome.

        I just think Lyon is the better option to be honest.

  2. Despite a brilliant batting effort in the first test, Agar, as a spinner, is not taking enough wickets. I think its high time Lyon should be roped in as a specialist spinner

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