Ashes series is undoubtedly one of the most anticipated cricketing events in the whole world. It doesn’t matter if you are from Australia or Zimbabwe, your interest in the Ashes will be same if you are a true cricket fan. It is also one of the oldest rivalries in the sports history. The overall history of the series has various interesting records. But the situation has become increasingly interesting in the last decade and half as home advantage for teams in Ashes series has tremendously increased. It is perhaps the same reason that England was able to win first Test match of 2015 series, in spite of having a relatively weaker playing side.
Above picture is enough to summarize the whole Test match. However, if you are looking for a rather elaborate summary then we have prepared one for you. England won the toss at Sophia Gardens, Cardiff on July 8th and decided to bat first. Despite of losing three early wickets for only 43 runs, England was able to put a brilliant total of 430 runs. Ballance, while batting at number three, provided balance to the team and Roots scored 137 runs with complete authority. Then it was Moeen Ali who added 77 precious runs towards the end of the inning. Starc picked his 5 wicket haul for 114 runs, while Hazlewood got two wickets.
Australia in return got a fine start and was 180-2 at one stage. However, combined effort of England bowlers helped to restrict them for only 308 runs. Anderson picked three wickets while Broad, Wood and Ali picked two wickets each. Australian opener CJL Rogers scored 95 runs while no other Australian batsman even managed to reach somewhere near to a half century.
England had the lead of 122 runs but their start was shaky as two early wickets were lost. Bell, Root and Stokes helped recover the early loss and played a crucial role in keeping England’s dominance intact. England was bowled out for 289 runs in their second inning. Johnson, Hazlewood and Starc picked 2 wickets each while Lyon had the best bowling figure of the inning. He got 4 wickets for 75 runs. However, a relatively better bowling performance by Australian attack still couldn’t manage to save the match as target of more than 400 runs was enough to form an opinion regarding the upcoming result.
Warner scored a half century, Smith made 33 runs while Johnson scored highest runs in the inning. He scored 77 runs. All other batsmen failed to create an impact. At one stage Australia was 97-1 but the demise started with the loss of Warner. Australia lost 5 wickets in approximately 12 overs. In the 39th over, Australia had a very sorry looking scorecard, showing 122-6. Johnson tried to rescue but perhaps it was impossible to win the match from that situation. Australia was bowled out for 242 runs. England managed to win first Ashes 2015 Test match on the fourth day of the match. Broad and Ali got 3 wickets each while Wood and Root got their hands on two wickets each.
JE Root from England won “Player of the match” award due to his brilliant all round performance. Overall, he score 194 runs in the Test and got two wickets. Both teams will now rest for few days while fans will remain anxious to see live action once again.
Next match of the series will be crucial for both teams. England would want to win the match in order to have clear lead in the series while Australia would be hungry to level the series.