England and Australia drew the third Ashes Test at Old Trafford, meaning that the home side kept a 2-0 lead, and with it took an unassailable advantage in the series.
Australia dominated the match itself, though, batting first and building a position of strength which they held for five days.
But England dug in long enough to avoid the follow-on, and the rain then put paid to any hopes the tourists had of forcing a victory.
Before the Third Test
England had taken a 2-0 lead after two matches after winning narrowly at Trent Bridge and heavily at Lord's. Australia seemed to be in disarray and their captain Michael Clarke was laughed at by England fans when he said he still believed Australia could still win the series.
- England recalled three players to their Test squad: Chris Tremlett, James Taylor and Monty Panesar
- Taylor's pick was the most noteworthy: could he replace Kevin Pietersen if he didn't recover from injury in time? Elizabeth Ammon took a look
- Australia had much to think about selection-wise: Was David Warner a possible solution to their struggling batting–It didn't seem that way
- The weather was excellent, and Australia won the toss and opted to bat first.
- Tourists changed three players–Nathan Lyon for Ashton Agar, Mitchell Starc for James Pattinson, and Warner for Philip Hughes
- England were unchanged as Pietersen was passed fit.
- It was Australia's day with the bat as the pitch behaved, with captain Clarke hitting a big century as Australia closed at 303-3.
Reaction: Michael Clarke shows his class, writes Freddie Wilde
- England threatened to stymie Australia's score, only for Clarke, Brad Haddin and Starc to take them to 527-7 declared
- Hosts lost Joe Root and Tim Bresnan before stumps and slumped to 52-2.
Video clip of the day: Warner opts to review. Goodness alone knows why (see right)
- Kevin Pietersen stole the show with a measured 113.
- But KP fell late in the day and England are still some way behind the game at 294-7 in first innings.
- Rain appeared in the forecast for days four and five
Video clip of the day: Kevin Pietersen swaggers to his 23rd Test century (see right)
- England eked their way past the follow-on total, but were bowled out for 368.
- Australia looked to get a move on, reaching 172-7 in quick time as they set up a declaration
- Bad light forced the players off earlier than scheduled in the evening, Australia less than happy
Gif of the day: Dave Warner gets hit on the finger by Tim Bresnan, before hooking a catch to Joe Root (see right)
- Play got underway late, but Australia declare overnight and strike in the morning session to leave England 35-3.
- Rain falls early in the afternoon to stop the fourth innings from reaching a thrilling conclusion
- England retain the Ashes when the match is abandoned as a draw at 1640.
Reaction: Time for Test cricket to have a roof?
Gif of the day: Brad Haddin takes the catch of the match to account for Jonathan Trott (see right)
After the third Test
- England and Australia clash again in the fourth Test at Durham, starting on Friday August 9.
- The fifth Test takes place at The Oval from August 21
Reaction: Elizabeth Ammon ranks the England players' performances at Old Trafford
Reaction: Freddie Wilde asks if England can now dare to play freely?
Here's the third Test scorecard, courtesy of the BBC:
Australia 1st innings 527 for 7 declared (146.0 overs)
England 1st innings 368 all out (139.3 overs)
Australia 2nd innings 172 for 7 declared (36.0 overs)
England 2nd innings 37 for 3 (20.3 overs)
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