Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith joined an unwanted list of players during the third day of the second Ashes Test against England at the iconic Lord’s Cricket Stadium in London on Friday. Smith joined Khawaja in the middle after Cameron Bancroft was dismissed for 13 in the 23rd over. Khawaja was batting on 36 and when the southpaw departed, their third wicket partnership score read 0.This is only the fifth instance at Lord’s when two players couldn’t score a single run in their partnership for the third wicket in the longest format. The last time this happened was way back in 1961 when Colin Cowdrey and Ted Dexter couldn’t score a single run in their partnership for third wicket at this famous venue.
Despite his partners changing on one end, Steve Smith continued to pile on the runs on the other end on the fourth day of the Test. Australia were 155/5 at lunch on Saturday’s fourth day. That still left Ashes-holders Australia, looking to win their first Test series away to England for 18 years, 103 runs behind the hosts’ first-innings 258.
But with Smith’s 53 not out making him the first batsman to post seven consecutive Ashes scores of fifty or more, a match where rain washed out Wednesday’s first day completely and prevented any play after lunch on Friday looked to be heading towards a draw. Australia captain Tim Paine was 21 not out, having helped Smith add 53 for the fifth wicket on a ground where they both made their Test debuts in 2010.
Smith completed his fifty when he went down the pitch to Leach and lofted him over long-on for a sixth four in 107 balls faced.
((With agency inputs))