Rory Burns, the England opener, continued his good run in the 2019 Ashes with 53 off 127 deliveries in the second Test at Lord’s.
Burns batted well in seaming conditions, and his contribution was vital in England reaching a decent total of 258 in the first innings. It took a sensational diving catch from Cameron Bancroft at short leg to end his stay.
Asked if Bancroft’s grab was the best he had seen, Burns went with his Surrey teammate’s reaction catch against Lancashire last year. “I don’t really pay too much attention to catches that get me out,” he said on Thursday, August 15. “It’s the second-best I’ve seen at short leg; top goes to Will Jacks, last year.”
— Lancashire Cricket (@lancscricket) August 22, 2018
Burns was one of several England batsmen to be peppered with the short ball from Australia’s bowlers, but he expected England to give the visitors a taste of their own medicine. Debutant Jofra Archer, who looked in fine touch in his wicketless spell on day two, will especially relish the bouncer battle, he said. Archer bowled six overs before stumps with a dot-ball percentage of 83.3, clocking high speeds of 92 mph.
“He copped a fair few as well so he’s probably looking forward to getting his own back,” said Burns. “It’s quite an obvious tactic, what they’re doing, so the boys are preparing for it.
“And luckily we can dish out some of our own in this game as well. We’ve got some boys in our armoury that do the same things, so it should be pretty interesting.”
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) August 15, 2019
Burns, who started slow in red-ball cricket, has elevated his game in this series so far. In two Tests, he has accumulated 197 runs at 65.66, including a hundred and a fifty. However, when asked if he has finally found his feet in Test cricket, Burns felt he had a way to go. “Let’s not speak too soon,” he smiled. “It was a decent day, but disappointed not to go on, in all honesty.”
He added that the Test is in the balance right now and the pitch offered something for everyone so far.
“It’s tight. It’s a competitive total; it’s kept everyone interested all day,” he said, “It seamed, if you’ve missed your lengths, you’ve been punished. It’s poised quite nice.”