An unbeaten 101 from Chris Rodgers left Australia trailing by just 16 runs at the close of play. England’s last wicket lasted only two overs in the morning, before Jimmy Anderson was dismissed by Jackson Bird, adding no more runs to his 16. This left England at 238 all out.
Stuart Broad made an early impression on the Aussies, getting 2 early wickets. David Warner was bowled by Broad for 3, with Usman Khawaja following for a 8 ball duck, leaving Australia on a perilous 12-2. Rodgers survived 2 reviews, with DRS confusion playing it’s part. After surviving a first lbw appeal, Rogers appeared to be caught by Prior, but the review showed that it hit his pads. However, the review also showed that Rodgers would have been out lbw. But the umpires refused to give the opener out, as England’s appeal was based on the catch, not the lbw. Captain Michael Clarke could only add 6 to the total, before Cook took a high catch at first slip from Broad’s bowling. Steve Smith also failed to stay at the crease after getting in, after nicking Tim Bresnan behind to Matt Prior. Rodgers was dropped twice on 45 and 50, with Bresnan missing a catch from his own bowling, and Graeme Swann dropping Rodgers at full stretch at second slip. To add to England’s woes, the ball looked as if it would have carried to Alistair Cook for simple catch, and Swann appeared to injure his finger attempting the catch. Rodgers and Watson put on a 129 partnership to push the Aussies on from 76-4 to 205-5. The most worrying thing for England was the bowling of Anderson, Swann and Bresnan looking distinctly average, with Stuart Broad providing the only signs of hope. It was no surprise then, that Broad was the one to break the Aussies’ key partnership, with Matt Prior diving to his left to cling on to Watson’s nick, dismissing him for 68. Not long after Rodgers made his maiden Ashes test century, bad light stopped play with Australia finishing on 222-5. This came at a good time for England, and hopefully a nights rest and a new ball to come will invigorate England’s bowling attack.