ASHES TEST CRICKET continues on 9GEM , but HD blockout continues for some fans

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The 2nd Ashes Test begins in Lord’s tonight, Wednesday August 14th at 7.30pm AEST until Sunday August 18th, LIVE and EXCLUSIVE on 9GEM and streamed live on 9Now.

Following an exciting, back-and-forth contest which saw Australia securing their first win at ‘The Fortress’ of Edgbaston in 18 years, the battle now heads to the hallowed turf of Lord’s.

Steve Smith’s redemption rolls on following his man-of-the-match heroics in the first Test, which saw him score a pair of centuries to put the Aussies on top.

England and captain Joe Root will head into the 2nd Test with confidence and a renewed game plan to even the ledger, despite it historically being a ground that the Aussies have always found a lot of success at.

Young bowling sensation Jofra Archer joins the English side to spark their attack in place of the injured James Anderson, while spin bowler Jack Leach replaces Moeen Ali.

For Australia, James Pattinson is being rested as Josh Hazlewood joins the pace attack.

Commencing on a Wednesday evening, much of the coverage of the second Test will be broadcast on multi-channel 9GEM.

NINE has recently launched a High Definition version 9GEM on digital channel 95. However, the improved service remains unavailable across significant areas of regional Australia. Southern Cross Austereo operates a number of NINE affiliate stations across Victoria, Southern NSW and Queensland. The regional broadcaster is unable to add 9GEMHD to its lineup due to existing arrangements with the Aspire shopping channel and religious broadcaster SBN.

Foxtel customers will be frustrated by a lack of High Definition. The pay-tv provider has so-far failed to sign a carriage agreement with NINE meaning 9GEMHD is not available on Foxtel boxes, even if the set-top-box is connected to a Terrestrial antenna. Customers with older Foxtel boxes are also prevented from accessing the Standard Definition version of the 9GEM.

(UPDATE - since the publication of this article, FOXTEL has unlocked 9GEMHD for satellite customers. 9GEMHD is available on Foxtel channel 231)

Hosting Nine’s coverage will be Todd Woodbridge, alongside former Australian men’s captain Mark Taylor, former Australian women’s star Mel Jones, Aussie wicket-keeping great Ian Healy and former women’s captain Lisa Sthalekar.

Commentary will be provided by a collection of heavyweights of world cricket, such as Aussie and English stars Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Michael Atherton, David Lloyd, Isa Guha and more

The 2nd Test match begins at 7:30pm AEST tonight on 9GEM and 9Now (time and channel throughout the series varies by state – see below and check guides for details).