Former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting believes that the Headingley Test – where England chased down 359 despite being 286-9 at one point thanks to Ben Stokes’ heroics with the bat – won’t play on the Australian team’s mind on Day 5 of the fourth Test at Old Trafford.
At the end of Day 4, England were 18-2 having lost both Rory Burns and Joe Root thanks to Pat Cummins. England need a further 365 runs to win the Test match and Australia will fancy their chances of ending the Test match on the winning side.
“It’s a completely different set of circumstances. Headingley, that wicket actually got better and better. It finished middle of day four, didn’t even get into the fifth day. This pitch has got worse and worse as the days have gone on,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.
“Australia don’t need to be spooked about anything there; one for the fact they should have won, but two it’s not going to be easy for anyone starting on that pitch against Australia’s attack.
“Nathan Lyon didn’t get any wickets in the first innings, but he will in the second innings. There is going to be so much on offer for him out there it’s not funny.
“Even some of the balls we saw today, the spin and bounce is going to be a nightmare for anyone starting against him.”