Ashes 2023: Australia strike early after Mitchell Starc dismisses Ben Stokes on Day 3 of Lord's Test
England began Day 3 at 278/4, trailing Australia's first innings total by 138 runs.
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The second Test at Lord's was intriguingly poised at the end of Day 2, with the hosts displaying their 'Bazball' ploy to nicety in their chase of Australia's first innings score of 416. England scored 278 runs for the loss of four wickets in just 61 overs on Day 2. Opener Ben Duckett starred with the bat as he scored a fluent 98 off 134 balls, with Zak Crawley and Ollie Pope losing their wickets in the 40s.
Harry Brook (45) and captain Ben Stokes (17) were the overnight batters for England. They would have hoped to add to their 56-run partnership on Day 3. However, all they managed to add was a solitary run scored by the right-hander off the first ball of the day. Stokes came to take guard and was dismissed straightaway by a fine delivery from Mitchell Starc that angled in towards the southpaw.
The batter was also guilty of closing his bat face a bit too early. The leading edge flew to the right of Cameron Green at gully, who took a sharp catch. The Aussie all-rounder is making a name for himself as one of the finest gully fielders in modern-day cricket. An early wicket was just what the Pat Cummins and Co. needed, and Starc provided them with just that.
Starcccccccccccccccccccccc!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! pic.twitter.com/BnHxs5yUZR— Sanju Here 🤞👻 (@me_sanjureddy) June 30, 2023
England look to get close to Australia's total
Jonny Bairstow joined Harry Brook after the fall of Ben Stokes' wicket. The two right-handers were the last recognized pair of batters remaining for England but the hosts faced another setback when Brook walked off soon after scoring his half-century.
The hosts replaced all-rounder Moeen Ali with young pacer Josh Tongue for the ongoing Ashes Test, which has depleted their batting resources in the playing XI. The batters need to work hard as Australia's first-innings score is still some distance away. A big first-innings lead could be a massive advantage for the current Ashes holders.