Australia tightened their stranglehold on the third Ashes Test match with another dominant day of Test cricket. The hosts closed on 235-3 after bowling out England for 251 in their first innings. It gives Michael Clarke’s men a lead of 369 with two days to play.
|England 1st Innings (87.6 Overs)|
|IR Bell||lbw b Harris||15||90||71|
|BA Stokes||c †Haddin b Johnson||18||94||57|
|MJ Prior†||c †Haddin b Siddle||8||35||24|
|TT Bresnan||c †Haddin b Harris||21||55||29|
|SCJ Broad||lbw b Johnson||5||23||13|
|GP Swann||not out||19||34||23|
|JM Anderson||c Bailey b Siddle||2||22||9|
|Extras||(b 11, lb 7, w 5, nb 2)||25||Extras|
|Australia 2nd Innings (70.0 Overs)|
|CJL Rogers||c Carberry b Bresnan||54||161||135|
|DA Warner||c Stokes b Swann||112||187||140|
|SR Watson||not out||29||66|
|MJ Clarke*||b Stokes||23||63||63|
|SPD Smith||not out||5||26|
|Extras||(b 8, lb 4)||12||Extras|
|Total||(3 wickets; 70 overs)||235|
Another disastrous day was compounded for England when Stuart Broad failed to take to the field for the Australian second innings. He has been to hospital to have an X-ray on a foot injury.
Broad has now arrived back at the WACA but pictures show him not wearing a boot on his injured right foot which does not augur well— Oliver Holt (@OllieHolt22) December 15, 2013
The tourists resumed on 184-4 with Ian Bell and Ben Stokes at the crease, 205 runs behind Australia’s first innings total of 385.
Despite some spells on Day 2 to suggest that the WACA pitch is still a decent batting track, England failed to capitalise. They lost the key wicket of Ian Bell within the first 10 minutes of play, and as has so often been the case for England this series, more were to follow.
After seeing a Mitchell Johnson delivery hit a crack in the pitch and deviate to first slip, Stokes was far too deep in his crease and edged a very full delivery behind to Brad Haddin.
Time to settle in and rebuild, you would think? Not quite. Matt Prior played a poor shot to Peter Siddle—trying to pull one to square leg—and he too was caught behind by Haddin after a bottom edge.
Johnson had Broad trapped absolutely plumb in front not long after, before Ryan Harris and Siddle took the wickets of Tim Bresnan and James Anderson, respectively, to leave England 251 all out, 134 runs behind Australia’s first innings total.
After tearing through the England lower order, the Aussies had time and comfort to build a big lead. And they did exactly that.
The deplorable efforts of the England batsmen were emphasised further as Australia’s openers started to make quick runs in the Perth sunshine. Chris Rodgers played conservatively for his 54, but once again the star of the Australia batting effort was David Warner.
I have a begrudging admiration for Warner. He's relentless in his annoying-ness— Elizabeth (@legsidelizzy) December 15, 2013
With England missing Broad due to injury, Warner tucked in. He batted with aggression and class on his way to his second hundred of the series, and pretty quickly it became apparent England were staring down the barrel of yet another defeat.
Rodgers removed Bresnan after lofting one to Michael Carberry. Warner eventually went for 112 when he went for one big shot too many and skewed a Graeme Swann delivery to Stokes.
England took one more wicket before close of play, with Stokes bowling the Aussie captain Clarke with a beautiful delivery. But once again, the question ahead of Day 4 is when Australia will declare and look to win the match.