Persistent rain abandoned Australia waiting to push for an Ashes-retaining victory and delayed the start of day three.
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England – that must avoid defeat so as to keep his hopes of regaining the urn living – shut day two on 23-1, a mammoth 474 runs behind Australia’s Steve Smith-inspired 497-8 declared.
Joe Denly (4), with swapped places at the arrangement with Jason Roy, was blown off with a super short-leg catch from Matthew Wade off Pat Cummins, leaving Rory Burns (15no) and nightwatchman Craig Overton (3no) at the crease after the first 10 overs of both England’s innings.
The forecast is more expensive for Friday afternoon and the weekend, meaning Australia will fancy their odds of preserving their grip on the Ashes having been scuppered by Ben Stokes’s heroics in Headingley in the third Test as England chased down 359 to level the series at 1-1.
England wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow has backed his side to dig with the bat, just as they did in Leeds next time around with been steamrolled in their first innings to get 67.
“There is three innings nevertheless to go in the match, three days of cricket abandoned,” stated the 29-year-old, who’s due to bat at Number 6.
“If we could go out and employ ourselves, set our stall out to bat for a lengthy time period like we’d at Headingley, there is no reason why [we cannot get back in the Exam ].”
Smith’s next Ashes double century and third ton in four innings in the series – underpinned the 30-year-old notching 211 within his first Test knock, Australia’s complete .
Smith has notched 589 runs in the show, at an average of 147.25 and with a cheapest score 92, with his overall batting average in Test cricket currently standing at 64.64 following his 26th hundred in the format.
However, the batsman says he was assisted in his most recent huge evaluation by England frequently bowling short.
“I’ve faced a lot of short-pitched bowling in my life and have not had too many issues with it,” said Smith, who suffered his concussion when he had been struck on the neck with a Jofra Archer bouncer in the second Test at Lord’s.
“I said before the match – off there means that they can’t hit me to the pad or nick me off. It softens their ball .
“It played with our hands, I believe, and allowed the ball to acquire soft pretty quickly and also for us to score big first-innings runs.”
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