August 23, 2009

TROTT, TROTT TO WIN...:

Jonathan Trott century puts Ashes within reach (Simon Wilde, 8/23/09, Sunday Times of London)

For the second time in four years at The Oval a South African-born cricketer has taken England to within tantalising reach of regaining the Ashes, lost in Australia in December 2006. Jonathan Trott’s workmanlike century in the fifth and final npower Test match yesterday may have lacked the panache and daredevilry of Kevin Pietersen’s 158 on the same ground in 2005 but it could prove every bit as valuable in purpose.

Trott’s painstaking, chanceless 119, spread across five and a half hours, enabled England’s captain, Andrew Strauss, to declare at 373 for nine and leave Australia 546 to win, a target that has never been met in any first-class match, let alone a Test match. But to England’s frustration, Simon Katich and Shane Watson negotiated 20 overs to stumps, closing on 80 for no wicket.

If Australia somehow score the 466 runs they still need to win, they would take the series 2-1 and retain the Ashes — and in the process probably break English hearts. England’s target is simple: 10 wickets in a minimum of 180 overs. The weather forecast is good for the two remaining days of the match.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 23, 2009 6:58 AM
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