BUMBLE ON THE TEST: England’s draw with New Zealand was a poor advert for Test cricket

BUMBLE ON THE TEST: England’s forgettable draw with New Zealand was a poor advert for Test cricket… roll on the Hundred!

  • England opted against thrilling final day as they drew with New Zealand at Lords
  • It is two teams playing two Tests with no bearing on World Test Championship
  • It was great to have fans back in the stadium after yellow poncho man gaffe

Test cricket failed to out on a show in front of the crowds as England and New Zealand played out a draw on the final day at Lords.

The home side decided not to chase down a 273 on the final day, opting instead for batting practice as the first match of the summer was drawn.

Sportsmail’s DAVID LLOYD offers his views and insights on the first Test in London

England’s dour draw with New Zeland at Lords was a poor advert for Test cricket

WHAT A WRONG ’UN

A chap came over to me at a pub in Notting Hill the other night and told me he really enjoys our commentary.

Says he always looks forward to me coming on.

What a nice chap, I thought. Until he called his mate over and said ‘come and meet Aggers….’

SPEED IT UP, PLEASE

The amount of play that continues to be lost because of poor over-rates is laughable.

We were 21 overs down on where we should have been ahead of on Sunday – and that’s with an extra half hour every night!

I keep on banging on about it but no-one is listening. The authorities have to give power to umpires to sort this out….

WHERE’S THE AGGRESSION?

That was a good declaration from Kane Williamson but England went into ‘what if’ mode rather than ‘let’s go.’

Surely a more aggressive approach would have sent a positive message. They had neither the appetite nor ambition to respond to Williamson’s challenge.

There was nothing to lose for England and everything to gain. Very disappointing.

England went into 'what-if' mode rather than 'let's go' after Kane Williamson pulled out early

England went into ‘what-if’ mode rather than ‘let’s go’ after Kane Williamson pulled out early

That’s JUST NO FUN, DOM

It’s just that this was a dreadful advert for Test cricket. Two teams playing two Tests that have no bearing on the World Test Championship.

Just have some fun! Ken Barrington and Geoff Boycott were dropped by England for scoring too slowly.

This from Dom Sibley was instantly forgettable. Roll on the Hundred!

DILEMMA WITHOUT STOKES

So, how can England get a spinner in the side for the second Test? One solution would be to leave a batsman out and play James Bracey at six.

Craig Overton could, at a push, come in at seven, with three more seamers and Jack Leach making up the tail.

You can see the dilemma they face without Ben Stokes. It’s a line-up that would make me nervous…

Ben Stokes' absence leaves a bowling lineup that would make me nervous for second Test

Ben Stokes’ absence leaves a bowling lineup that would make me nervous for second Test

NO MASKING MY NERVES

And so my first outing in London comes to an end, a day early to make room in the box for the return of the great Mikey Holding.

I must confess I’ve been nervous about being here too! What is it folk don’t understand about wearing a face covering?

The fashion seems to be to sling it round the chin. But full marks to the pubs I’ve visited. They were spot on…

PONCHO MAN LAPS IT UP

How about that chap in the crowd in the yellow poncho? He just couldn’t get it the right way round when rain came before lunch – and his struggles came up on the big screen!

He got a nice cheer from the crowd and even some applause from the players when he got it right.

It was proper slapstick, like Mr Pastry trying to put a deckchair up!

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