Australia Spins England Out With 6 for 49 to Conquer Edgbaston

A 251-run win by Australia in the opener of the 2019 Ashes has hopefully set a tone and may have offered some measure of revenge for the semifinal loss to England in the ICC ODI Cricket World Cup last month.

That is the optimistic perspective.

On the pessimistic side, it would be hoped that Australia did not expend all its scoring, because after all, a 251-run win, discarding for a moment the difference between ODI and Test, was a margin that would have made a passable target in the short format tournament.

It was about a week ago that we reported that Nathan Lyon and Pat Cummins were less than certain of inclusion, but they paid a huge dividend. Lyon recorded 6 for 49, his best-ever figures against England, regardless of venue. He finished the match with nine wickets.

It was the first time that Australia won at Edgbaston since 2001 in any format and this marks the first time they have taken a lead as tourists since 2005.

After being 122 for 8 on the first day of Test No. 1, the victory might deserve a commemorative song.

Cummins was also formidable.

He sent Rory Burns back to the pavilion on the final morning with a short ball. Cummins removed Jonny Bairstow and in the process claimed his 100th Test wicket in his 21st match.

He finished with four for 32 and gave the appearance that the Brits were batting blindfolded in the pitch dark.

Cummins can now enjoy the distinction of being the second-fastest to reach 100 wickets, tailing Charlie Turner’s 17 and one better than Jeff Thomson, Bill Johnston and Dennis Lillee.

Lyon reached the 350 Test-wicket milestone with the prize scalp of Ben Stokes.

Steve Smith was the Player of the Match with a couple of tons, one of 144 and the other 142.