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England bowlers claim opening session before rain intervenes

Rich Evans by Rich Evans
@Rich_Wisden 3 minute read

Just over two hours of play were conducted on day three of the second Ashes Test at Lord’s on Friday, with England’s bowlers coming out on top.

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Though not torrential for the most part, persistent rain meant the teams couldn’t resume battle after lunch, with Australia finishing the day on 80-4, after England’s fast bowlers made inroads in the first session. Play was officially abandoned shortly before 5:30pm, with Australia trailing England’s first-innings total by 178 runs.

Debutant Jofra Archer got his inaugural Test scalp when he trapped Cameron Bancroft in front early on, with Australia’s failed review suggesting the ball would have flicked the bails. Chris Woakes, who made a battling 32 with the bat on day two, kissed the edge of Usman Khawaja’s blade shortly after to make it 60-3.

The main man entered, with his eccentric, chop-down leaves seemingly more outrageous than ever. England knew that if they could remove Steve Smith early doors, with overhead conditions still favouring the bowlers, they would still have a sniff of victory in this rain-affected Test. But, as we’ve come to expect, the stoic talisman remained.

Stuart Broad, around the wicket, angled one into Travis Head’s front pad, which DRS proved to be clattering into middle stump after Aleem Dar rejected the appeal, much to the astonishment of the veteran bowler.

Drizzle saw the players leave the field a few balls before the scheduled lunch break, which proved to be the end of the day’s proceedings.

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