Australia tour of England

Aussies tune-up with Lord's victory

Travis Head blasts ton and Billy Stanlake fires on his return as Australians trounce Middlsex

Dave Middleton at Lord's, England

10 June 2018, 12:37 PM AEST

Match wrap: Aussies dominate at Lord's

Travis Head hit a century opening the batting and Billy Stanlake's raw pace had batsmen hopping as the Aussies won their second warm-up match of this ODI tour, beating Middlesex by 101 runs at Lord's.

Head hit 106 opening alongside D'Arcy Short, while Aaron Finch hit 54 from the middle order as Australia reached 6-283.

Kane Richardson finished with 3-31, while fellow quicks Stanlake and Michael Neser claimed two apiece with Middlesex bowled out for 182 with nine overs left in the match.

On his return from a broken finger picked up in the IPL, Stanlanke finished with 2-45 from nine overs and looked in fine form and bowling with express pace ahead of the opening match against England at The Oval next Wednesday.

The towering Queenslander was too quick for Middlesex No.4 George Scott, who was castled neck and crop and had his middle stump splayed across the Lord's turf. And there was a thunderous appeal for caught behind off Hilton Cartwright's first ball that was turned down.

George Scott loses his middle stump // Getty
George Scott loses his middle stump // Getty

The Australians were given a solid work-out by Middlesex, with the bowling unit keeping a tighter hold on the game than in the first warm-up.

Middlesex opener Max Holden hit 71 before he became Stanlake's second – a ball banged in back of a length was popped up for short mid-wicket.

Neser was impressive again in his second match of the tour, and his sharp reflex caught-and-bowled gave the Australians the opening breakthrough to remove Nick Gubbins for 18. He later picked up a second and finished with 2-33 in seven overs.

Ashton Agar came on inside the Power Play overs for the second game, and picked up a wicket in his first over to have Western Australia-raised Stevie Eskinazi caught in the deep after top-edging a sweep.

The wickets came in a flurry at the end as the Aussies proved a class above for Middlesex's tail. Jhye Richardson was quick bowling down the slope from the Members' End, and namesake Kane Richardson underlined his prowess at the back end of an innings, picking up former Black Caps international James Franklin for 31, amid a late collapse that yielded 3-31.

All the quicks bowled at least eight overs, while Agar had 1-27 from five and Short 1-16 from three. There was no spin from either Glenn Maxwell or Travis Head.

Nesser's reflex return catch // Getty
Nesser's reflex return catch // Getty

The Lord's crowd, one of the more genteel in English cricket, warmly applauded the Australians. Any mentions of sandpaper were muttered under the breath to neighbouring seats rather than hurled from the terraces at the boundary riders.

The 6-283 Australia scored here was an improvement on the 9-277 they scored at Hove, with spin again slowing up the run rate once the powerplay overs were complete, and the final 10 overs yielded 73.

Short looked in great touch against the quicks, creaming two fours and a monster six. But the slightest miscue in a pull shot off Tom Barber saw the ball loop just enough for Sydney-born Nathan Sowter to take a sensational leaping catch, reaching high and across his body with his right hand to take it falling to his left.

Short stood at the wicket flabbergasted, but had to depart for 18, with Shaun Marsh coming in at No.3 for his maiden knock on this tour.

Aussie-born Sowter snares Lord's screamer

It was far from Marsh's first hit in these conditions this northern summer – he has been in good form for Glamorgan – and the 34-year-old looked comfortable at the crease as Middlesex immediately turned to spin after the Power Play. 

The run-rate dipped while Sowter (1-47), Max Holden (1-29) and Ravi Patel (1-56) spun through the middle overs.

Marsh was denied a milestone when he chipped Holden to short mid-wicket where Middlesex captain Steven Finn did well to get down and take a sharp low catch.

Glenn Maxwell was struck in front by Patel as he tried to sweep the ball away and was given out for three off seven balls. That came on the back of the one he scored at Hove.

But there was to be no repeat of the middle-order wobble the Aussies displayed against Sussex as Finch biffed a four and six to get off the mark.

He and Head built a steady partnership and kept the run rate above five as the South Australian pushed on to his fifth List A century, coming from 133 balls with nine fours.

Finch looked in great touch in reaching fifty to go with the 78 he scored in the first warm-up in Hove, and was spared a life when dropped by compatriot Cartwright at long-on as he threw the bat in the late overs. There was to be no such reprieve second time around and was caught on the boundary to exit for 54.

Ashton Agar was solid again with the bat adding an unbeaten 20 from 15 balls, while Neser hit one boundary to finish four not out as the Australians added 73 runs in the last 10.

Qantas tours of England and Zimbabwe

ODI squad: Tim Paine (c), Aaron Finch (vc), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Michael Neser, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye

T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Alex Carey (vc), Ashton Agar, Travis Head, Nic Maddinson, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Swepson, Andrew Tye, Jack Wildermuth

Qantas Tour of England

June 7: Warm-up v Sussex: Australia won by 57 runs

June 9: Warm-up v Middlesex: Australia won by 101 runs

June 13: First ODI, The Oval (D/N)

June 16: Second ODI, Cardiff

June 19: Third ODI, Trent Bridge (D/N)

June 21: Fourth ODI, Durham (D/N)

June 24: Fifth ODI, Old Trafford

June 27: Only T20, Edgbaston (D/N)

Qantas T20I tri-series Tour of Zimbabwe

Sunday, July 1: Zimbabwe vs Pakistan

Monday, July 2: Pakistan vs Australia

Tuesday, July 3: Australia vs Zimbabwe

Wednesday, July 4: Zimbabwe vs Pakistan

Thursday, July 5: Pakistan vs Australia

Friday, July 6: Australia vs Zimbabwe

Sunday, July 8: Final