The English bowling unit brought them back into the game against Australia on Day 2 of the fifth Ashes 2023 test at the Kennington Oval in London. Experienced pacer Stuart Broad played a mind game to break the concentration of well set Marnus Labuschagne which was termed as ‘Black Magic’ by a few cricket fans.
Labuschagne along with Usman Khawaja was constantly blocking the English bowlers in the first session on Day 2. Despite bowling some brilliant stuff, the English pacers failed to break their partnership after which Broad decided to break their concentration.
Stuart Broad’s unusual mind game to dismiss Marnus Labuschagne in Ashes 2023
The experienced English pacer flipped the bails in between the overs which seemed pretty unusual to everyone. Labuschagne too couldn’t understand the logic behind flipping the bails and smiled while looking at his partner Usman Khawaja.
Interestingly, right on the next delivery bowled by Mark Wood, the Aussie batter went on to edge the ball. Joe Root standing at first slip grabbed an absolute stunner with just one hand to get rid of Marnus Labuschagne.
Marnus seemed pretty disappointed after his dismissal as he looked quite settled on the pitch. On the other hand, the English fielders were thrilled after finally breaking the second wicket partnership between Labuschagne and Khawaja.
Even commentator Nasser Hussain was surprised by the incident and said, “Stuart Broad did magic with the bails.”
England Cricket posted the video of Marnus Labuschagne’s dismissal on their official Twitter handle and wrote, “𝗡𝗮𝗺𝗲: Stuart Broad 𝗢𝗰𝗰𝘂𝗽𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻: Mind Games Extraordinaire Incredible, Broady”
Meanwhile, after the dismissal of Labuschagne, the English side made a comeback in the game. Stuart Broad dismissed Usman Khawaja and Travis Head in a quick succession while James Anderson took the wicket of in-form Mitchell Marsh.
Keeper-batter Alex Carey and Mitchell Starc too couldn’t contribute much with the bat. However, Steve Smith made a crucial partnership with skipper Pat Cummins and took Australia close to England’s first innings total.
After the dismissal of Steve Smith, Pat Cummins made another vital partnership along with Todd Murphy for the 9th wicket. Cummins scored 36 runs while Murphy gave a contribution of 34 runs.
The Aussie side eventually posted a first innings total of 295 runs after batting for 103.1 overs on Day 2 of the fifth Ashes 2023 test and got a first innings lead of 12 runs. Chris Woakes took 3 wickets and was the leading wicket-taker for England.