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1st day of Test: no new dawn, same old precipitation.

The first day at Lords is always a magical event.

I always arrive early, not just to avoid the queues, but to take in the atmosphere and to look down at the sward of green and impressive modern and Victorian architecture.

Ticket prices were not on my mind but by the end of an eventful day there was no new dawn under the new captain Ben Stokes.

It all started so well too with New Zealand dismissed for a paltry 132 and debutant Matthew Potts taking 4 wickets.

England got to 58 without loss in reply.

Then the now familiar collapse came – at one stage losing 5 wickets for 8 runs.

Why does this happen?

Perhaps it’s a white ball mentality of looking to score off every ball and not building an innings like the great run accumulators like Geoff Boycott and Ken Barrington could.

I think that – instead of trying to avoid a collapse – the selectors should cater for one.

In the Ashes series of 2005, time and time again, the third level of Freddie Flintoff, Geraint Jones and Ashley Giles rescued England.

If he can be persuaded to return, Moeeb Ali at 8 and Stokes at 6, Foakes at 7 or possibly Jos Buttler can similarly do a rescue job

Still, as I walked back to my hotel in a sunlit and glorious Regent’s Park, I reflected more on the meeting of old friends and an entertaining day of cricket and a well-poised Test.





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About Douglas Heath

Douglas Heath began his lifelong love affair with cricket as an 8 year-old schoolboy playing OWZAT? Whilst listening to a 160s Ashes series on the radio. He later became half-decent at doing John Arlott impressions and is a member of Middlesex County Cricket Club. He holds no truck at all with the T20 version on the game. More Posts