Australia rewarded for aggressive tactics on Boxing Day

Cricket

Australia‘s aggressive bowling strategy paid huge dividends on a fantastic first day of the Boxing Day Test, masterfully exploiting a hesitancy in the English ranks to play shots.

The quicks were direct and at the wickets for the most part, forcing shots from the visitors in an innings that saw nine of 10 batters dismissed via a catch, and the other LBW.

“We tried to keep it really full in the first session. We tried to keep the stumps in play as much as possible,” debutant Scott Boland said after day one.

ASHES BLOG: Root reaches dismal Australian record as Aussies roll on

READ MORE: Root’s future on the line amidst Ashes calamity

READ MORE: Key Englishmen blasted for ‘utterly horrendous’ batting

“Their batters were pretty conscious of wanting to leave the ball, so we just tried to keep attacking them as much as we could.”

Although Boland bowled aggressively towards the English top order, he was made to wait a few hours before finally getting his first wicket when he trapped Mark Wood LBW.

“The only thing I was sort of doubting was if it was bouncing over, but the guys behind the wicket were certain it was hitting the stumps,” he said.

Boland said he was confident the ball hit the pad first, despite a lengthy review to determine the initial point of contact. 

He added a nice catch in the deep later on (his second of the day), in what was a solid first day with his new baggy green, presented to him that morning by injured quick Josh Hazlewood. 

Boxing Day Test begins

“It was a really special moment this morning, getting my baggy green off Josh Hazlewood. Even though I’m older than him, he’s probably someone that as a bowler, I look up to,” Boland said.

“To get the cap off him was really nice, and to have my family there with me was really special.” 

Boland spoke of the pride he felt in becoming just the second man of Indigenous descent to play Test cricket, after Jason Gillespie. 

“It means a lot to join a pretty small club, and hopefully it’s just the start of something big for the Indigenous community with cricket,” he said.

“The Indigenous communities in AFL and rugby are so big, hopefully one day the Aboriginals in cricket can be just as big.”

For a daily dose of the best of the breaking news and exclusive content from Wide World of Sports, subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here!

Leave a Reply