Pitch Report: Lord’s in London
Ends: Pavilion End, Nursery End
Home Team: Middlesex
Test History: 133 Tests; 51 home wins, 33 away wins, 49 draws
Last 10 Tests: 4 home wins, 4 away wins, 2 draws
Last 10 Tosses: 5 bat first (4 wins, 1 draw), 5 field first (1 win, 1 draw and 3 losses)
As the home of English cricket – indeed world cricket – it has been suggested that Lord’s inspires the opposition more than it does the hosts. Getting onto the famous honours boards is a motivation no-one denies.
The ground is privately owned by the Marylebone Cricket Club (membership 18,000), is the home to the ECB and, from 1909 to 2005, the ICC.
Despite the MCC’s reputation for stuffiness, the ground has been extensively redeveloped to keep it at the forefront of cricketing venues, and many of the additions are strikingly modern without diminishing the famous venue’s historical power.
Last Time Out
Pakistan got their Test series against England off to a flying start with an inspired win at the home of cricket.
Misbah-ul-Haq led a rally from 77 for 3 in the first innings with his 114 allowing Pakistan to reach 339 all out while Chris Woakes set the tone for the season leading the English bowling with figures of 6/70.
In reply England squandered a good start provided by Alastair Cook (81) and Joe Root (48) to fall to 272 all out with Yasir Shah getting his name on the honours board taking 6 for 72.
Pakistan scrapped to 215 all out thanks to a fierce rearguard action with Woakes picking up another five wicket haul ending with figures of 5 for 32.
Led by Yasir Shah (4/69) Pakistan knocked over England for 207 to complete a win that would inspire a nation.
Speaking about the famous slope Proteas quick Vernon Philander said: “There is always a little something in there with the duke ball, conditions here also depend on the overhead.
“We always look forward to playing Test cricket, playing against some of the stronger nations always brings out the best in us. We have a great record away from home so hopefully we can continue with that.
“It [the slope] could play on your mind if you are not used to it.
“I always find it’s a wicket-taking option, when it gets flat here you can use the slope to run it back in, similarly when there is movement.
“You have to get used to it quickly, most of us would have played here and had a feel for it so we can share ideas.”
Happy Hunting Ground
Alastair Cook is second only to Graham Gooch in the runscoring charts at Lord’s having racked up 1746 runs in 22 Tests at the venue at an average of 45.94 including four hundreds and ten fifties.
James Anderson (78) and Stuart Broad (73) top the all-time wicket taking stakes at the ground.
Hashim Amla has scored 244 runs in two Tests at Lord’s which includes two hundreds.
Philander’s seven wickets on his last visit to the ground leaves him as South Africa’s best current performer with the ball at Lord’s.
The Test looks likely to start in warm conditions with temperatures dropping around day three but we should get enough overs in to get a result.
They say if you win the toss at Lord’s look up rather than down at the pitch. When the sun is out batting tends to get a bit easier with the bowlers likely to dominate if there is cloud cover.
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