Nottinghamshire’s Stuart Broad put on a defensive shield to seal a County Championship 2023 draw against Lancashire, remaining unbeaten on three off 50 balls after his team had been reduced to 136-9.

Chasing 295 for their second win of the season, Nottinghamshire were in quite a spot of bother, having lost their first six wickets for 55. Joe Clarke and Brett Hutton offered some resistance, putting on 67 for the seventh wicket in 23.3 overs. However, the dismissal of Clarke for 42 (88) by James Anderson piled on the pressure once again, with only two more wickets standing in the way of a huge defeat.

Broad, however, had other ideas. Walking in at No.9, he combined with Hutton, as the duo faced 5.5 overs – scoring just three runs – before Hutton was dismissed. Broad, who played as many as 47 dots in his innings, was ably supported by the lower order, or the tail, first combining with Luke Fletcher to play out 43 balls. Fletcher was dismissed with four deliveries of the game remaining, and it all came down to Olly Stone, who ensured the efforts of his teammates did not go in vain, as he remained unbeaten by the end.

Broad has been used as a ‘NightHawk’ by England during their 2022 summer, with Ben Stokes clarifying that his role would be similar to a nightwatchman’s, with the only difference being that he was instructed to attack rather than defend. In Nottingham, it was defence all the way.

His innings did not go unnoticed by his England teammates, who had plenty of fun at his peril. Former England Test skipper Joe Root posted a screenshot of a scorecard of the game, which had Broad face a string of dot balls off Anderson, and captioned it, “You feeling ok nighthawk?”, to which Broad replied that he was feeling “dizzy.”

Anderson, who was at the receiving end of his England teammate’s blockathon, replied with a number of sleepy emojis.