England captain Ben Stokes won the toss under gray skies and floodlights at cricket’s home on Wednesday with high hopes of an early wicket for his team to tie the series. was sent to the plate.
But David Warner and Usman Khawaja got lucky, sharing a nifty 73-point opening partnership, with Josh Tang knocking them both out, but Manus Labskanj with 47 and Travis Head with 77. and swiftly put Australia in an advantageous position on London soil.
Manager Joe Root dismissed Heads and Cameron Green in the same over to give England hopes in the closing stages, but the day was firmly Australia’s.
“Obviously it’s been a great day for us, but it could have been an incredible day on third down,” Labchagne told Sky Sports.
“But even then, if it was sent to a turnstile that seemed to contain a significant amount, I would accept it.”
Two Just Stop Oil protesters rushed onto the pitch and sprayed the outfield with orange powder, causing the game to be halted at one over, but Warner and Kawaja remained unfazed.
They negotiated a tough attack from James Anderson and Stuart Broad, and after a short delay due to rain, Warner hooked Tan for six before Kawaja was bowled for 17 by the same bowler just before lunch. Reached 50 years old.
Each hitter was eliminated by a slip, with Kawaja giving Root very difficult chances and Warner giving Ollie Pope a sharp chance.
Warner remained in peril after lunch, especially against Tang, who threw the left-handed pitcher into the gate with a spectacular swing of 66 to close Australia 96-2.
Smith emerged from the pavilion to a chorus of boos, but quickly calmed down and silenced the crowd with two extravagant drives from Broad to Covered Perimeter.
When Smith was caught out by wicketkeeper Johnny Bearstow in the same 24th over, Broad almost immediately took revenge, but the decision was overturned by the batsman.
Rabchagne got off to a slow start, finding rhythm with a three-four from broadovers, and when Stokes took the bowling, Australia’s right arm stroked Stokes three times to the boundary.
Broad thought he had caught Labskany LBW, and the referee raised his finger before the batter was commuted, but the Australian departed just after tee time, with Bairstow feathering a catch from Ollie Robinson.
Head joined Smith and accelerated his scoring percentage as the English bowlers tired in the final session.
With Smith over 50 and a half-century with just 48 heads, the duo set boundaries around the ground.
Bearstow was headed off Root after 77-of-73, but three deliveries later saw Green go for an ugly swipe on the spinner and Anderson catch it easily mid-off.
Stokes seemed out of ideas and the day ended on a positive note for England, who made little use of the innovative field settings that are the captain’s hallmark.
He managed to bowl just three overs and any hopes of England regaining the Ashes were extinguished on the sixth day after the end of the series.
“Going into today’s match, it was green and cloudy, so I think we bowled very well in the first hour, maybe four or five by lunch,” Tang told the BBC. .
“I think the new ball is important. For the first 30 minutes, just hit that line and length. Just be patient and try to take wickets when you can.”
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