Australia survive nervy evening session as 2nd Ashes Test ends in drawhttps://indianexpress.com/article/sports/cricket/england-vs-australia-2nd-ashes-test-jofra-archer-highlights-report-5915277/

Australia survive nervy evening session as 2nd Ashes Test ends in draw

Australia weathered a pace storm from Jofra Archer to hold on to a draw on Day 5 of the second Ashes Test at Lord's on Sunday. They were trailing England by 113 runs with 4 wickets in hand when play was brought to an end by the umpires.

A debut to remember: Jofra Archer and Jack Leach gave Australia some nervy moments on Day 5 of the 2nd Ashes Test at Lord’s on Sunday, but Australia eventually held out for a draw. (Reuters Photo)

Australia survived a day of nerves at Lord’s on Sunday, as they managed to hold out for a draw in the 2nd Ashes Test. They were 154/6 when the umpires called the day’s play to a close, trailing England by 113 runs.

Jofra Archer (3/32) kept cranking up the pace in the Australian second innings, ironically managing to hit Steve Smith’s concussion substitute Marnus Labuschagne (59) on the helmet as well. Jack Leach also gave the visitors some nervy moments in the evening session, with close-in fielders making life difficult for batsmen.

Earlier, Ben Stokes (115*) and Jos Buttler (31) resumed England’s second innings on the morning of Day 5, as they slowly went from a position of risk to a position where they could aim for a victory.

England stepped on the gas after the lunch break, with Stokes and Bairstow (30*) playing in T20 mode as they looked to put Australia under pressure with a big second innings total. They declared their innings at 258/5, giving Australia a target of 267 from around 50 overs.

Archer and Leach get Langer fiddling on balcony

Australia’s task, of course, was to be made even more difficult because their batting bulwark – Steve Smith – had been ruled out for the second innings because of a concussion suffered in the first innings.

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Archer got the home team off to a wondrous start, getting David Warner (5) and Usman Khawaja (2) out cheaply. Justin Langer, seen fiddling with a stress-relieving ball at the Lord’s balcony at this stage, would not move from his position till the end of the match.

Travis Head (42*) and Marnus Labuschagne then put up a resistance, putting on an 85-run stand.

Jack Leach (3/37) then accounted for the quick wickets of Labuschagne and Matthew Wade (1). Archer then came back to get Tim Paine (4) out cheaply as well as Australia found themselves in pressure to save the match once more.

Pat Cummins (1*) joined Head in the middle to play out the last six overs of the day.

Rain fails to dampen Ashes fire

The start of play was delayed by around an hour on Sunday because of rain. Rain had earlier washed out the whole of Day 1 and two sessions on Day 3. Despite almost two days of the Test being washed out, the Lord’s Test lived up its billing – with all three results possible till the very last stages of the match.

Incidentally, this is the first drawn Ashes Test at Lord’s since 1997.

The two teams will now head to Headingley for the third Test of the series, which starts on Thursday. Australia are leading the series 1-0.