The way the Edgbaston deck behaved yesterday, it is indicating that spin would play a huge role. The track is offering slow turn and plenty of drift for finger spinners. In that sense, Moeen Ali and Nathan Lyon should be the two vital bowlers in this Test.
On Day 4, Moeen Ali’s value cannot be undermined. I think the critics are judging his batting too much whereas he himself stated, he should be judged by his bowling abilities more than batting. And as a matter of fact, Moeen is right.
In the last one year, Ali has been fetching wickets consistently for England. He has offered testing line and length and his straighter ones along with drifters, helped England to relish crucial wickets.
But, too much analysis about his batting perhaps draining out his confidence. Joe Root needs to have faith in Moeen today, as on this track, he would need Moeen both to pressurize and fetch wickets. Most importantly, Moeen can be that x-factor in removing Steve Smith.
Mind you, if Australia can achieve a lead around 200-250-plus, chasing on this deck would be tougher as they have Nathan Lyon, who could create a lot of problems on Day 5.