First Test at Lord's: McGrath storms in to force abject surrender from sorry England
AUSTRALIA 190 & 384 ENGLAND 155 & 180 Australia won by 239 runs
Tuesday 13 September 2005
The wooden board, which commemorates every performance of this magnitude at the ground, is the poorer without the name of S K Warne on it, but at least the 35-year-old had the satisfaction of taking the catch which took Australia to a memorable victory.
It was the equally brilliant McGrath who deprived Warne in what will probably be his last Test appearance at Lord's. The fast bowler took four wickets for three runs in 23 deliveries as England capitulated from their overnight score of 156 for 5 to 180 all out in 50 demoralising minutes of play.
It was fitting that Simon Jones was "c Warne b McGrath" because it was the bowling of these two greats which dashed England's hopes, and highlighted the vacuum in class that still exists between these two teams. McGrath finished the match with the awesome figures of 9 for 82, yet it was Warne who led the Australians into the Lord's Pavilion with a souvenir stump in one hand, the match ball in his pocket and the outstanding analysis of 6 for 82.
Before this match, Matthew Hoggard had the gall to suggest these two cricketers were over the hill. It will go down as one of the most ill-considered comments in Ashes history. After receiving his man of the match award McGrath went to join his family in the Mound Stand.
But what now for England? That five of Michael Vaughan's team had not played a Test against Australia was deemed to be an advantage, because they would not bring the mental scarring of previous failed campaigns into this series.
The players will attempt to put on a brave front. They will state that England underperformed, and that when they play to their full potential they can compete with this great Australian team.
Indeed they can. But, sadly, only when Australia do not play to theirs. And after this drubbing several of them will now realise just how good Ponting's side is, and the size of the task they face.
This was a very good Australian performance but they can play better. The tourists' batting on the first day was poor and several of their star names - Justin Langer, Matthew Hayden, Adam Gilchrist and Ponting - failed to perform. But, in the same breath, it is hard to believe that McGrath will bowl with such precision in the second Test at Edgbaston in 10 days' time.
During this period Vaughan and Duncan Fletcher, the England coach, have a lot of work to do. There will be calls from some quarters to change the team, but this would achieve very little. This was England's best team at 10 o'clock on Thursday morning and it should be in Birmingham on 4 August.
Angus Fraser's highlight
England lost the match by 239 runs but their bowlers still made an impression. The second ball of the game, bowled by Stephen Harmison, hit Justin Langer on the right elbow and Matthew Hayden and Ricky Ponting on the head. Ponting also had stitches in a wound on his cheek. The ferocious bowling allowed Michael Vaughan's attack to dominate the series.
Nick Kyrgios calls former Olympian Dawn Fraser a 'blatant racist' after she tells Wimbledon star to 'go back where their parents came from'
Angel Di Maria to Bayern Munich: The reasons why Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben will not be joining Manchester United
Cristiano Ronaldo storms out of interview after being asked about possible sale of Manchester United target Sergio Ramos
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Kyrgios set for heavy fine for giving up game during loss to Richard Gasquet
Memphis Depay's squad number revealed as he trains with Manchester United for the first time... but is it cursed?
- 1 Autistic teenager beaten up by bullies makes them watch 20-minute video about autism
- 3 Chris Moyles reportedly set to make radio comeback with new breakfast show on XFM
- 4 The Greece debt crisis explained in less than 100 words
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Osborne to cap family benefits at £23,000 – announced ahead of his post-election Budget
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
Sickness and disability benefits could be reduced by £30 a week as part of £12bn welfare cuts