The Ashes Second Test Preview
Do the Aussie's just win the Second Ashes Test match? Do the English have an advantage with the day night test at Adelaide?
History will forever say Australia won by 10 wickets in Brisbane, but that scorecard perhaps reads a tad unfairly to England. For the most part of the 1st Test the tourists competed with the Baggy greens and even found themselves in strong positions at certain times. Still, the Aussies showed plenty of fight and on the back of a Steve Smith masterclass they won a hard fought match on an uncharacteristic Gabba wicket. The victory sets the Aussies up well for Adelaide, but England will fancy their chances as Day/Night conditions could play into the hands of their pacemen.
3 KEY POINTS
- AUSTRALIA is unbeaten at the Adelaide Oval in their last six Tests at the venue.
- ENGLAND has won two of their last six Tests (’95 and ’10) at the Adelaide Oval.
- AUSTRALIA has lost the toss in each of their last two Tests in Adelaide, but gone on to win both Tests.
- On home soil, Australia has won their last six Tests against England
- In each of the last three Ashes series, the team that has won the 1st Test has gone on to claim series honours.
- STEVE SMITH has scored five centuries in his last nine Ashes Tests.
- Steve Smith’s unbeaten century at the Gabba will go down as one of the great Ashes knocks. In that respect, it’s impossible to look past the Aussie captain in the High Bat market (he’s currently hovering around the $3.30 mark). However, it may well be worth exploring other options in the Aussie lineup given the value on offer. After posting a second innings 87* at the Gabba, David Warner is at the top of that list. The combative opener has notched up scores of 144, 113, 55, 26, 87* across his last three Tests in Australia and his Test average at home now sits at 60.17. For those willing to cast the net even further, consider Shaun Marsh who helped Australia to a memorable victory at the Adelaide Oval two summers ago with a brilliant 49 in very difficult conditions. For England, most attention will centre on Joe Root, but James Vince could be the man to watch after his impressive 83 in the first innings at the Gabba showed his ability to play all around the wicket.
Nathan Lyon has taken an incredible 32 wickets in his last four Tests and many argue that he was unlucky not to have even more after his impressive display in Brisbane. The tweaker troubled his opposition from the Day 1 and had the left hand batsmen in particular floundering. With the seam on the pink ball apparently difficult to pick up at twilight, Lyon is certainly worth backing in Adelaide for most wickets, but it may be worth waiting for the second innings given the footmarks will be far more established.
Turning to the poms, James Anderson again shapes as the key man. The swing king took four first innings wickets at this ground in 2010 and with the pink Kookaburra in hand for the first time, he could once again prove a difficult proposition for the Aussies.
High Bat: David Warner (Aust.)
Wickets: Nathan Lyon (Aust.)
Value picks: Shaun Marsh (Aust.) to score 50+ & Chris Woakes (Eng.) to take the most 1st innings wickets