Friday, March 05, 2010

England Build Massive Total In Second Test

Good afternoon, and welcome to the 2nd Ashes Test at Lords, your commentary team this afternoon are Jonathan Agnew, Shane Warne, Sir Ian Botham, Ian Bishop and Tony Greig, over to you Aggers....

"Well what an exciting day this has been, after all the speed and chaos of the Cardiff test when twenty two wickets fell on the first day we thought things might settle down and we might have a fairly normal test here at Lords, but from the off that was not to be.

England got off to a bad start when a poorly timed run resulted in Mitchell Johnson dismissing England Captain Andrew Strauss without a run on the board. Kevin Pieterson again failed with the bat, he's having a terrible Ashes so far, and then Andrew Flintoff was back in the after looking very uncomfortable and struggling to 11 runs.

England were now on 30-3 and looking in deep trouble when Ravi Bopara came to the crease, Bopara has been promoted to the side ahead of Ian Bell and had a fairly anonymous first test, scoring only a handful of runs and taking just the one wicket. Today at the home of cricket though, Bopara played a masterful innings, taking only a few balls to settle himself he began hammering the Australian attack with a series of flowing and cleverly paced strokes.

Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson took the brunt of the assault as England raced to 300-4 at lunch, opening bat Alistair Cook falling just after reaching his century. Bopara played on for big ton, 158 before skying one off Lee and being caught by Ponting. Continuing the aggressive England batting, Paul Collingwood made the Australian pace bowlers look tame, and a last wicket stand of 64 with Collingwood smashing 6's out of the ground brought his personal total to 117 and England to a huge 524.

Here we are now at the start of the Australian innings, James Anderson is running up, be bangs one in...bowled him, stumps all over the place, Ricky Ponting can hardly believe it he didn't see that one at all and the England team are ecstatic."

Game Review : Wii Ashes Cricket 2009 8*

For the cricket fan, this is a great Wii game, you can play single tests, exhibition matches, short games or the whole 2009 Ashes series, which, with all the between ball animations and commentary lasts about as long as the actual event.

The game play is easy to understand, but the timing is quite hard to master when playing at at the harder levels. When batting you can select to play each shot defensively, normally or as an aggressive attack, it is the same with the bowling where you can try to bowl a faster or slower than normal ball, and you twist the Wii remote to apply spin.

The commentary is enjoyable for a while, but there are only a set number of stock phrases each character has and by the time you have heard Ian Bishop say "Smashing shot, I'd pay just to come and see that" for the hundredth time it gets a little grating. The first time you play you will probably watch all the animations, Flintoff wiping the sweat from his brow on the ball, the batsmen doing a little gardening, Brett Lee examining the seam, but you can skip these with the A button for faster game play.

A very absorbing game, and one that requires quite a bit of concentration, I have played a few cricket games on the PC, but the Wii version knocks them for 6.

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