Another frantic, exciting and absorbing Test match vindicates why The Ashes is so highly rated in World cricket. An unexpected fightback from the English middle order, led by the one and only Ben Stokes helped the hosts script arguably one of the great wins ever in England’s Test history. The Ashes provided another classic, one which shall be remembered for a very long time.
Batting without their tallest figure was always going to be a tough ask for Australia, but David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne showed some grit in their third-wicket partnership after the fall of two early wickets. The duo did struggle on occasions against the aggressive pace and swing combination of the English bowlers, but they did complete their respective fifties.
After Archer dismissed Warner, the Aussie batting fell apart. Apart from Tim Paine, no one after Labuschagne got to double figures as England packed Australia for an underwhelming 179 runs.
What followed on the second day was even more dramatic, with Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins ripping apart England for fun. The duo terrorized their batsmen with metronomic accuracy, which saw England get bundled out for a paltry 67 runs. This gave the Aussies a priceless 112-run lead. Hazlewood returned with a five-fer for the Aussies.
Labuschagne continues to impress
Warner and the other top three batsmen faltered in the second innings, but Steve Smith‘s replacement Marnus Labuschagne didn’t. The 25-year-old stitched a couple of important partnerships with Matthew Wade and Travis Head en route to completing yet another half-century. Pattinson fought hard towards the end as well to help the side build on the lead they garnered.
Australia registered 246 runs in the second innings, which meant the English needed 359 runs to stay alive in the Ashes. With power and time to add, it seemed like the five-time champions will cakewalk through this game, but that wasn’t to be the case.
Stokes bats in God Mode
After losing the openers early again, England were in a huge spot of bother. But skipper Joe Root had other ideas and was well-determined to take this game deep. He built a good partnership with Joe Denly, one which kept England in the driver’s seat for a while. The duo added 126 runs for the third wicket and the partnership saw both batsmen complete their half-centuries.
But Josh Hazlewood had other ideas and struck a few quick blows. He first dismissed Denly and soon joined Lyon in the party, picking the big fish Joe Root. Wickets kept tumbling at regular intervals, but Ben Stokes at one end kept his head calm to keep England alive.
When Jofra Archer played a silly shot and got dismissed, everyone lost hope of England registering a comeback. But Ben Stokes, with outstanding support from Jack Leach, kept mustering runs at a brilliant pace. He completed his hundred and added 76 runs for the final wicket to pull off one of the finest comebacks ever in Test cricket history.
Here’s how Twitter reacted to a freak of an innings from Stokes:
That was special from Ben Stokes. Single handedly winning the test match. Great viewing
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) August 25, 2019
Wow @benstokes38 #ashes pic.twitter.com/lI9K9vOIsM
— Luke Wright (@lukewright204) August 25, 2019
That was special. @benstokes38 #ashes
— surya77 (@surya_14kumar) August 25, 2019
One of the best innings of all time in cricket by @benstokes38. Test cricket at its best. #Ashes2019
— Sandeep sharma (@sandeep25a) August 25, 2019
Time and again @benstokes38 Plays the kind of cricket and wins the games which makes him the best all rounder of the current lot #ashes #TestCricket #freak
— Irfan Pathan (@IrfanPathan) August 25, 2019
You cannot do that Ben Stokes …..
— Nasser Hussain (@nassercricket) August 25, 2019
Never ever give up!! Ben Stokes= Resilience Personified #Ashes2019
— Shikha Pandey (@shikhashauny) August 25, 2019
What a game just saw one of the best if not the best test knock ever congratulations @benstokes38 and @englandcricket simply outstanding #testcricketforever #Ashes2019
— Azhar Ali (@AzharAli_) August 25, 2019
So proud of the boys!! Absolutely incredible!! Resilience personified!! Kept fighting all the way! #ashes 1-1
— James Taylor (@jamestaylor20) August 25, 2019
What a remarkable Test Match. One of the best test 100s you will see. Brilliant stuff from @benstokes38 Gritty contribution from Leach. Congratulations @ECB_cricket #Ashes #ENGAUS
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) August 25, 2019
Unbelievable scenes at the ashes ! @benstokes38 can’t really describe what you did with that bat, hats of to you 🎩 test cricket at its best 🏏 #Ashes2019
— yuvraj singh (@YUVSTRONG12) August 25, 2019
One of the greatest test match innings of all time. Ben Stokes, take a bow #ENGAUS
— Mohammad Kaif (@MohammadKaif) August 25, 2019
No words can do justice to that game and that innings by Stokes. Unbelievable!Aust had there chances and that LBW decision of Lyon will mean a sleepless night for all Aussies.
— Mark Waugh (@juniorwaugh349) August 25, 2019
Australia defensive with field spread to early for Stokes shows how he is feared. #Ashes #AUSvENG
— Brad Hogg (@Brad_Hogg) August 25, 2019
WOW!!!!!!! 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 @benstokes38 https://t.co/dWtmqpxWZd
— Sam Billings (@sambillings) August 25, 2019
I have no sister but if I did I’d want her to marry Ben Stokes.
— Graeme Swann (@Swannyg66) August 25, 2019
Simple the best innings I’ve ever seen!! What an incredible performance!! The boys found a way to win!! Remarkable!! Come on England 🏴 #ashes #stokes
— James Taylor (@jamestaylor20) August 25, 2019
SIR BENJAMIN STOKES!!!
Take a bow!!!#testcricketisalive #stokes’ashes #Ashes2019
— Aditya Tare (@adu97) August 25, 2019
England pull it off..literally frm the proverbial jaws o defeat..@benstokes38 makes it happen..& how.!!Superb advertisement fr Test Crkt..what a thrilling game o pulsating fortunes..OZ might feel done in by a crucial decision..but that’s the beauty o Test Crkt-Well Done England!
— Bishan Bedi (@BishanBedi) August 25, 2019
Take a bow !! Ashes 2109 well n truly alive b’coz of just one man @benstokes38 !! Cricket at its best !! Well played #stokes n #England !!
— Mithun Manhas 🇮🇳 (@MithunManhas) August 25, 2019
Well done @englandcricket … super Test match! @benstokes38 you are a freak! @BeefyBotham would have loved that! You 2 can dine out on that for the rest of your life! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
— Dean Jones AM (@ProfDeano) August 25, 2019
That was pretty special! @benstokes38 , that was ridiculous! Well done. Ashes alive and well.
— AB de Villiers (@ABdeVilliers17) August 25, 2019
Everyone choked !! The Aussies .. the Umpire but Stokes is Stoked #ashes What a player !👏👏👏 Unbelievable.. unforgettable!!!
— Russel Arnold (@RusselArnold69) August 25, 2019
What an innings from @benstokes38, will go down as one of the greatest test innings, Headingley does it again! #Ashes #BenStokes
— Tom Moody (@TomMoodyCricket) August 25, 2019
Ben stokes that was simply awesome.. This 100 will be remembered for a very long time.. what a player @benstokes38 congratulations mate.. #Ashes Test cricket at its best.. incredible
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) August 25, 2019
Hahahha WOW!! That was insane. Sir @benstokes38, arise 😂 what a game, what a player!! #ashes
— Tom Curran (@TC59) August 25, 2019
Greatest knock of all time …. Must be …. @benstokes38 …. I LOVE YOU ….#Ashes
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) August 25, 2019
— Matt Prior (@MattPrior13) August 25, 2019
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