BUMBLE AT THE TEST: Ben Duckett is in the company of several all-time batting greats, Ollie Pope continues to fuel the Ian Bell comparisons, and could Constitution Hill carry on hurdling?
- Australia warming up without facing a single county side is a sign of the times
- Surely Ireland would be better off facing Scotland, Netherlands or Afghanistan?
- NASSER HUSSAIN: Ben Duckett and Ollie Pope profit against a poor Irish attack
Having established their dominance in the first day of the one-off Test match with Ireland, England set the visitors a sizeable task at Lord’s.
After England declared on 524 for four – courtesy of the fastest ever double-century in England from Ollie Pope and a 182 for Ben Duckett – Ireland returned to the crease after the hosts blitzed them with the bat.
Josh Tongue repaid the faith shown in him by Ben Stokes by taking three to leave the Irish on 97 for three, with James McCollum retiring hurt.
England now have the chance to seal victory with a day to spare in the four-day warm-up Test, ahead of the first Ashes meeting in a fortnight.
Here, Mail Sport’s David ‘Bumble’ Lloyd takes you through the day’s action from Lord’s.
England finished the day in a hugely dominant position with Ireland 255 short of the hosts’ sizeable first innings haul
Duckett hit 182 in his first ever Test in front of a home crowd as he continues to impress after his recall
SENIOR CITIZENS HELPFUL IN THEIR HI-VIZ
Coming to the ground in the morning, the senior citizens were very helpful all the way around Lord’s with their Hi-Vis jackets on assisting people.
There was one chap right outside the gates shouting, ‘Does anyone want directions?’ So I said to him, ‘Yes – can you tell me the way to Burnley?’ I must say, he seemed quite bemused.
DUCKETT IS IN ESTEEMED COMPANY
It’s the first time I’ve seen Ben Duckett as an opener for England. He’s very compact, difficult to bowl and very small in stature.
Mind you, some of the great players of all-time have been small in stature – Don Bradman, Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara.
Don’t forget Tony Cottey and Richard Williams…
Duckett’s compact stature puts him in the company of the likes of Sachin Tendulkar – Test cricket’s all-time top scorer
AUSTRALIA’S PREPARATION A SIGN OF THE TIMES
Australia have arrived in England but it’s just a sign of the times we’re in that they’ll have no preparation matches against counties.
They’ve been up at Formby playing a bit of golf and now they’re down at Kent training before the World Test Championship Final.
All the talk has been about pace from both sides, well keep your eye on Nathan Lyon.
He is absolutely quality and will have a massive influence on The Ashes.
CONSTITUTION HILL TO STAY HURDLING?
Racehorse trainer Nicky Henderson was at Lord’s and he was asked by a keen punter if his brilliant champion hurdler Constitution Hill would stay hurdling or go jumping over fences.
His gut feeling is that he would stay over the hurdles. You heard it here first!
Nicky Henderson hinted that his champion horse Constitution Hill could carry on hurdling
IS THIS TEST DOING IRELAND ANY GOOD?
It was an excellent crowd again with so many Irish supporters in and that was great to see. I just wonder though if this Test is doing Irish cricket any good?
This is the seventh Test match they’ve played and they’ve not won any. Mind you, New Zealand didn’t win any till their 45th Test.
But surely it would be better for their development playing against countries like Scotland, Netherlands and Afghanistan.
It would definitely give them a better chance to be competitive. This is completely demoralising.
POPE’S COVER DRIVE IS REMINISCENT TO BELL’S
Ollie Pope helped himself to a fantastic double hundred. He reminds me so much of Ian Bell with that elegant cover drive.
Better attacks will not afford him that luxury though. It takes me back to the great West Indian attack with Viv Richards stood at slip shouting ‘No drives… driving for the motorway!
And what about when he wanted to see a bouncer? ‘Lift him up to the top floor man. Make him smell the leather.’
Ollie Pope’s cover drive is reminiscent of one of England’s greatest exponents of the shot in Ian Bell (pictured)
FROM Hi-de-HI! to CAROL VORDERMAN
The Media Centre at Lord’s is obviously a working place and there are quiet times when everybody is tapping away at their keyboards.
So imagine my surprise as our conversation turned from Hi-de-Hi! to On The Buses, Reg Varney, Carol Vorderman and Susie Dent.
In fact, Suzie Dent’s most recent word of the day on Twitter was ‘ultracrepidarian’ which means one who loves to give their opinion on matters they know nothing about.
I think I know him. He’s in the press box!
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