England suffered a massive blow in the Edgbaston Test when James Anderson, the leading wicket-taker in Tests could bowl only four overs due to hamstring tightness. Without his consistency, England were blown away by the brilliance of Steve Smith and Nathan Lyon as Australia won a Test in Edgbaston for the first time after 2001. Now, Joe Root's side have been dealt a big blow ahead of the Lord's Test which begins on August 14 with the pacer ruled out of the Test as well.
Anderson suffered a calf injury after undergoing two MRI scans. It was same calf muscle which he tore against Durham in a County Championship match for Lancashire on July 2 and scans revealed it has been damaged further. In Anderson's absence, Jofra Archer, who had a sensational World Cup with 20 wickets could likely make his debut. After the Edgbaston Test defeat, skipper Joe Root had defended Anderson's inclusion in the side. "It was a group decision in terms of the selection of him," said Root. "He passed all the fitness tests. and it's just one of those freak things that can happen in in cricket. It's disappointing, but we've got to try and respond to that and make sure that we get things exactly how we want them at Lord's," Root said.
Steve Smith's centuries in the Edgbaston Test were the key in Australia breaching the fortress of Edgbaston since 2001. Smith blasted 144 and 142 and he became the first Australian player since Steve Waugh to hit two centuries in a Test in England, having achieved the feat in 1997 in Manchester.
Australia beat England by 251 runs to win the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston on Monday. England, set a target of 398 to win, collapsed to 146 all out on the last day, with Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon taking 6-49 and fast bowler Pat Cummins 4-32. Victory gave Australia a 1-0 lead in the five-match series. Lyon's haul got him past 350 Test wickets and this was the first time Australia had won the first Test of the Ashes in England ever since 2005.