On Day 2 of the fifth Ashes Test at Kia Oval, England’s fast bowler, Chris Woakes, delivered a crucial breakthrough by dismissing the former Australian captain, Steve Smith. The momentous wicket brought England back into the contest on Friday (July 28).
At the time of his dismissal, Smith had scored 71 runs off 122 balls and was attempting to adopt an aggressive approach. However, his big shot ended up mistimed, sending the ball soaring high into the air. Wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow showcased his skills by expertly completing the catch.
Chris Woakes’ well-executed delivery came in the 90th over of Australia’s first innings, delivering a length ball that tempted Smith to play across the line. Unfortunately for Smith, he ended up with a top edge behind the slip cordon, providing England with the much-needed breakthrough.
The dismissal ended a challenging 54-run partnership between Steve Smith and Australian captain Pat Cummins for the eighth wicket. This breakthrough was instrumental in halting Australia’s momentum and tilting the balance in favor of England.
Throughout the 2023 Ashes series, Steve Smith has been a significant presence, amassing 319 runs in nine innings at an impressive average of 35.44. His contributions, including a century and a half-century, have played a crucial role for the Australian team.
Chris Woakes’ timely dismissal of the prolific batsman showcased his skill and determination, and it proved to be a pivotal moment in the match. With Smith back in the pavilion, England gained renewed hope and motivation to stage a strong comeback in the Test match.
Steve Smith goes aerial and it's a simple catch for Jonny Bairstow!
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) July 28, 2023