Johnson’s all-round skills keep Sydney Test in balance | cricket | Hindustan Times
Today in New Delhi, India
Aug 20, 2017-Sunday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

Johnson’s all-round skills keep Sydney Test in balance

The Mitchell Johnson indicators are looking favorable for Australia in the fifth Ashes Test. The paceman was restored to new ball duties on Tuesday and collected two of the first three wickets as England reached 167-3 on day two.

cricket Updated: Jan 05, 2011 02:00 IST

The Mitchell Johnson indicators are looking favorable for Australia in the fifth Ashes Test. The paceman was restored to new ball duties on Tuesday and collected two of the first three wickets as England reached 167-3 on day two.

And he'd already topscored for the hosts with a defiant 53 in a 76-run 10th-wicket partnership with Ben Hilfenhaus that lifted Australia's first innings total to a respectable 280. The last time he scored a half century, Australia beat England at Perth to level the series just before Christmas. He missed out on runs, and wickets, in Melbourne last week when England won to take an unbeatable 2-1 series lead and retain the Ashes.

The talented but sometimes erratic left-arm quick has had an up-and-down series, but has his confidence back after stand-in captain Michael Clarke told him to be prepared to bowl with the new ball at the SCG in Australia's desperate push to draw the series.

The 29-year-old Johnson had been mainly overlooked for the new ball since his disastrous match at Lord's in the 2009 Ashes series, when he struggled. "For me what helped today was actually getting the new ball, that gave me a lot of confidence," he said. "I think my pace was up again and I did swing the ball a little bit.”