On This Day: Batting Masterclass Jonathan Trott Made His Test Debut

When did Jonathan Trott Made His Test Debut
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On August 22, 2009, in the second innings of the fifth and final Test match of the Ashes, 28-year-old Jonathan Trott made his international debut for England and scored a century. In his first-ever game, an unidentified Warwickshire batsman helped England win the Ashes on a historic day.

Trott was chosen for the team after Ravi Bopara was benched owing to poor form, beating out more seasoned and experienced options like Mark Ramprakash and Robert Key. Trott boasts a strong First-Class record for Western Provinces and, since 2002, Warwickshire.

The selectors made a bold decision, one that they themselves were unsure of. Geoff Miller, the chief selector, even said that he was unsure of Trott’s temperament, technique, and ability to handle the pressure of competing in a decider. The only thing that solidly supported the top-order batter that season was his record of averaging 80 or higher in the tournament.

Australia, the opponent, had amassed most of the runs, produced the top three wicket-takers of the series, and produced more individual centurions. However, the hosts, England, were poised to reclaim the Ashes after being humiliated 5-0 three winters prior in Australia.

After winning the toss, Andrew Strauss cheerfully elected to bat with his team on a nice pitch. The captain shared a century stand with Ian Bell after scoring 55 at the top of the order (72). Trott batted at No. 5—below Paul Collingwood (24)—and looked good for the first two hours he was out in the middle before being run out for 41 in his first innings thanks to some outstanding reactions from Simon Katich at short leg.

Stuart Broad (five for 37) and Graeme Swann helped England set an acceptable 332 on the scoreboard before bowling Australia out for half their score on Day Two (four for 38). Marcus North and Mitchell Johnson reduced England to 39 for three during the final session of the second day as Australia mounted a comeback, and Trott returned to the field to join his skipper. Despite having a healthy lead of 211 at the moment, England was stumbling.

Trott helped move the game away from Australia as the drives through the off began to come in gradually. With a pair of carefree backfoot on-drives off left-arm spinner Michael Clarke, he reached his half-century. The fifty required 89 balls to complete and featured five tasteful boundaries. On 97, Ben Hilfenhaus’ short delivery swerved off his backfoot defence and nearly rolled on the stumps, giving him a reprieve. Trott steered the following wide, full ball to deep point for a few of runs before flicking the Australian pacer off his feet for two more runs down fine-leg to bring up his tonne.

The 23,000-person crowd erupted in applause as Trott raised his bat to every section of the stadium. This was a standout performance from a man who, up until a few days ago, was not thought to be composed enough to face the stresses of a key Ashes Test. A century, constructed out of 182 balls, nine lovely boundaries, and stroke play, had unquestionably altered their perspective. Trott, the ninth wicket to fall for England with the score at 373, was on 119 when it happened. Strauss instantly determined that was it and declared the innings, giving Australia a nearly insurmountable total of 546.

Trott helped his team get enough runs to guarantee that Australia fell far short of their goal and give England their second straight 2-1 Ashes victory at home.

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