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Ryan Davies digs in for England Under 19s against Australia

Wednesday 5th August 2015

Men’s First Team

Kent wicketkeeper-batsman Ryan Davies helped dig England Under-19s out of a hole on the second day of their Youth Test against Australia at the Emirates ICG.

Despite half centuries from openers Tom Alsop and Max Holden, England were reduced to 161 for five in reply to Australia’s first-innings total of 446 by a fiery afternoon burst from Jhye Richardson.

But Kent Cricket Academy graduate Davies joined the Warwickshire all-rounder Aaron Thomason to share an unbroken sixth-wicket stand of 81, steering England to 242 for five – although they still need another 55 to deny Australia the option of enforcing the follow-on in this four-day match.

The 18-year-old Margate-born cricketer is unbeaten on 42 from 66 balls including six classy boundaries, and Thomason has mostly restrained his naturally attacking instincts to make 31 from 80 balls with only four fours.

Earlier Alsop and Holden had put on 95 in 36 overs to provide England with the solid start they needed. Alsop, who was born in High Wycombe and plays for Hampshire, played the more positively of the two left-handers, reaching 66 from 103 balls with nine fours and a straight six before he fell lbw to Fletcher Seymour.

Holden, who captained England’s Under-17s last winter, did not reach his half century until the 51st over of the innings. But the 17-year-old from Cambridge, who plays for Middlesex, showed impressive patience against some accurate Australia bowling until he edged a ball angled across him from Richardson and was caught by Ian Healy’s wicketkeeping son Tom in the last over before tea, after making 55 from 169 balls.

That triggered a middle-order collapse. Essex’s Dan Lawrence was smartly caught at second slip by Australia’s captain Jake Doran in the same Richardson over after tea.

Richardson, an 18-year-old who caused England plenty of problems when the teams met in his home state of Western Australia earlier this year, took his third wicket in the space of seven balls when he plucked out Callum Taylor’s off stump with a beauty.

Liam Hatcher, an 18-year-old New South Welshman with more than a hint of Peter Siddle, was also bowling with impressive hostility from the Lumley Castle End, and he earned the wicket of England’s captain Haseeb Hameed, trapped lbw by a full inswinger after eking out 21 in 77 balls.

At that point England had lost four wickets for 18 in the space of seven overs, underlining the value of the partnership between Davies and Thomason.

Australia had also dominated the first hour of the day as they added 73 for the last two wickets. They were finally taken by the Somerset all-rounder Ben Green, who ended with three for 72, and the Lancashire legspinner Matt Parkinson, whose figures were slightly dented but could still be happy with six for 130 after a marathon 38-over stint.

Click here for the scorecard