Live Cricket Score, Ashes 2017, Australia vs England, 4th Test, Day 3 at Melbourne: England Close in On Lead – News18

Live Cricket Score, Ashes 2017, Australia vs England, 4th Test, Day 3 at Melbourne: Woakes Dismissed for 26

England’s Alastair Cook, left, and Chris Woakes make runs off the bowling of Australia’s Josh Hazlewood, right, during the third day of their Ashes cricket test match in Melbourne. (Image: AP)



Catch all the live action from the fourth Ashes Test between Australia and England from Melbourne on Cricketnext.comREVIEW DAY 2: Alastair Cook completed a sparkling century in a stellar return to form as England savoured a rare day of domination in the fourth Ashes test against Australia on Wednesday.
Cook raised his 32nd test ton with a pull-shot to the fence in the final over before stumps, and strode off the ground unbeaten on 104, having pushed England to 192 for two on day two at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
His successor as captain, Joe Root, was 49 not out, the pair having reduced Australia’s lead to 135 runs.
English cheer has been in short supply this series after Australia took back the urn by winning the first three tests but Wednesday’s fight back thrilled sun baked Britons in the raucous crowd of 67,882.
Stuart Broad, another Englishman under the microscope after playing a negligible part in the first three tests, captured 4-51 as Australia’s day one resistance melted in the morning heat.
The hosts started the day in a position of strength at 244 for three but were bowled out for 327, losing their last seven wickets for 67 runs.
After labouring on a slow and flat pitch on day one, England’s bowlers were transformed in the morning, with debutant paceman Tom Curran proving the unlikely catalyst.
The 22-year-old Surrey seamer bowled Steve Smith for 76 with the second ball of his first spell, having the skipper drag a wider, short delivery onto his stumps.
It not only secured Curran his first test wicket but ended Smith’s unbeaten reign at the MCG since his last dismissal in the Boxing Day test against India in 2014.
It was also a huge relief for Curran, who had opener David Warner caught on 99 on day one but missed out on the wicket for over-stepping his mark.
Smith was one of three Australian batsmen out chopping onto the stumps, with all-rounder Mitchell Marsh (9) and wicketkeeper Tim Paine (24) falling in the same fashion.
Shaun Marsh dug in to raise his third half-century of the series before being trapped leg before by Broad for 61, the wicket awarded after the bowler demanded a review.
James Anderson bowled Paine for his 520th test wicket, pulling past West Indies great Courtney Walsh to fifth on the all-time list, and grabbed a third victim for the innings by dismissing Nathan Lyon lbw for a duck.
Broad capped off a dominant morning for England by trapping tail-ender Jackson Bird lbw for four and having Pat Cummins caught at slip for four after lunch.
England’s rookie top order batsmen Mark Stoneman (15) and James Vince (17) fell cheaply but Cook carried the fight to Australia, riding his luck when Smith dropped him on 66 in the slips.
He and Root combined for a 112-run partnership to give England hope of mowing down Australia’s first innings total and taking a substantial lead.
Starting England’s response after lunch, Cook and Stoneman fended off Australia’s opening pace salvo before Lyon intervened with a brilliant caught and bowled.
The off-spinner coaxed a leading edge from Stoneman and leaped high to pull down a one-handed catch, reviving memories of his acrobatic dismissal of Moeen Ali during the second test at Adelaide Oval.
Vince was given out lbw when paceman Josh Hazlewood sent a full, straight ball thudding into his pads.
He neglected to review the decision and would have regretted it later, with the ‘snicko’ technology showing he had nicked the ball with his bat.
Root and Cook then frustrated Australia for most of the final session, the hosts’ task made heavier with sickly seamer Pat Cummins hampered by a stomach ailment.

Commentary (England innings)

Stuart Broad is the new man in. A bat-pad and leg gully in place for him. Short stuff is coming up….

119.3 J Hazlewood to Curran, OUT! Yes, there is a nick and the Australians have got their man! Judicious use of the review from them. 373/8

Australia are confident that they have got their man. It is regarding a caught behind decision. Is there a nick?

119.2 J Hazlewood to Curran, On a length outside off, pushed off the front foot to the off side. 373/7

119.1 J Hazlewood to Curran, Ooh… peach! Length delivery just outside off, Curran strides forward nicely to block it but gets beaten. That would have been a perfect defensive stroke but he didn’t read the line quickly. 373/7

Hazlewood returns for a bowl.

118.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length ball around the rib-cage area, tucked nicely to square leg. 373/7

118.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shortish ball, Cook again pulls it and the ball rolls to the square leg region. The man in who is standing in front goes to his left to stop it. 373/7

118.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, The batsman has played that off the front foot and into the ground. 373/7

118.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, On a length in the probing channel around off, Cook pats it to cover region. 373/7

There are two men close to the square leg region. One is standing in front and one is standing behind. Interesting field placement.

118.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shortish ball, pulled towards the square leg region. 373/7

118.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Cummins brings out the slower bouncer at 120.8 clicks, takes ages to come to Cook who shapes for the pull but rightly opts out of it. 373/7

117.6 J Bird to Curran, Short ball down the leg side, Curran goes for a pull but misses. 373/7

117.5 J Bird to Curran, Mixes it up again. It is fullish on off, patted back towards the bowler. 373/7

117.4 J Bird to Curran, Back to the shortish ball ploy to Curran. He hangs back and punches it nicely to mid off. 373/7

117.3 J Bird to Curran, Fuller in length, Curran plays it defensively to mid-wicket. 373/7

117.2 J Bird to Cook, This time he gets the cut right and plays it through backward point to rotate strike. 373/7

It has become very gloomy. A shower had been predicted. Let’s hope it stays away.

117.1 J Bird to Cook, Don’t remember the last time Cook played a rash shot. Back of a length and width on offer, Cook flashes at it and gets beaten all ends up. The length wasn’t ideal to go for that shot. 372/7

116.6 Pat Cummins to Curran, Another bouncer but not that well-directed, Tom sits underneath it. 372/7

116.5 Pat Cummins to Curran, The batsman flicks it away with a wristy shot. 372/7

An extra man in the slip cordon now.

116.4 Pat Cummins to Tom Curran, FOUR! First Test runs for Tom Curran! That was streaky but he will be happy to open his account. In the zone outside off, Curran pokes at it and gets an outside edge past first slip to pick up a boundary. 372/7

116.3 Pat Cummins to Curran, Another bouncer, this one shoots off the deck. Curran ducks under it to evade it. Once more a sign of the pitch being a bit two-paced. 368/7

116.2 Pat Cummins to Curran, Short ball, doesn’t bounce much. Curran does well to sit under it. 368/7

116.1 Pat Cummins to A Cook, Short ball, sits up nicely for Cook. He pulls it to deep square leg for a single. 368/7

115.6 J Bird to Curran, Short of a length ball, defended solidly off the back foot. 367/7

115.5 J Bird to Curran, Good line this. On a fuller length outside off, Curran strides forward to defend it but the ball whizzes past the outside edge of his bat. 367/7

115.4 J Bird to Cook, A fraction short and outside off, Cook chops it to sweeper cover for a run. 367/7

115.3 J Bird to Cook, Fullish delivery, patted to mid on. 366/7

115.2 J Bird to Cook, Back of a length ball, pushed off the back foot to silly mid off. 366/7

115.1 J Bird to Cook, On a length outside off, left alone. 366/7

114.6 Pat Cummins to Curran, Short delivery, Curran ducks under it. 366/7

The debutant, Tom Curran strides out to bat.

114.5 Pat Cummins to Woakes, OUT! Australia once again strike early after the break! The short ball ploy has worked against Woakes. Smart bowling from Cummins and he reaps the dividends for doing so. He cleverly bowls a slower bouncer around leg stump, Woakes goes for the pull shot but the ball arrives really late after pitching. Ends up getting it off the gloves and the ball lobs towards Tim Paine. He accepts the dolly gleefully. Actually the speed of the delivery was 132.2 kph but Cummins rolled his fingers enough on it to catch the batsman by surprise and got the desired help from the pitch. The 59-run partnership is cut short. Can Australia wrap things up quickly? 366/7

114.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shaping away substantially from Cook, dabbed past backward point for a run. 366/6

114.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length ball on middle, Cook leans ahead and blocks it solidly. 365/6

114.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Length delivery around off, Cook plays it with an angled bat towards cover-point. 365/6

114.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length delivery, Cook stands tall and punches it sweetly to mid off. 365/6

Pat Cummins to bowl from the other end.

113.6 J Bird to Woakes, Short of a length ball, Woakes shuffles a bit and eases it to mid on. 365/6

Ian Healy analyzes about the missed opportunity of Chris Woakes. The technique of Tim Paine was not quite correct. He didn’t move his left foot. If he did that quickly, he would have got the momentum to dive full length to his right. It would have been a sharp catch. Michael Clarke further adds that he is surprised that neither Paine nor Smith went for the catch.

113.5 J Bird to Woakes, Fullish delivery around off, tapped to mid off. 365/6

113.4 J Bird to Cook, The batsman has pushed it to the cover region. They pick up a single. 365/6

113.3 J Bird to Cook, Easy pickings for Cook when you feed him on the pads. He tucks the fullish delivery through square leg again. The fielder from long leg covers good ground to his right and keeps the batsmen down to a brace. 364/6

113.2 J Bird to Cook, Back of a length ball around off, Cook hangs back and defends it solidly to mid off. 362/6

113.1 J Bird to Cook, Starts off with a loosener, on middle and leg, Cook helps it through square leg and returns for a brace. 362/6

We are back for the final session. 34 overs are still left in the day. Conditions are still overcast. Alastair Cook and Chris Woakes to resume their innings. Jackson Bird to continue his spell. A slip and a gully in place. Here we go…

… Day 3, Session 3 …

Moeen Ali came out and started attacking from the word go. He played a breezy cameo but fell to the wily Lyon who sent him packing for the 6th time in this series. The spinner was the pick of the bowlers and got good purchase from a deck which has dried up considerably. Hazlewood also bowled with a lot of fire and supported him well. England will be happy that Cook is still out there after being dropped one more time by Smith and is nearing a double ton. Chris Woakes has given him good company and the duo is amidst an unbeaten 53-run stand. Will the visitors take the lead past 100? Or will the Aussies bounce back hard? Join us shortly.

A session which has gone in favour of England. They have scored 96 runs for the loss of two wickets in 28 overs and importantly they have taken the lead which is worth 33 at the moment. The tourists came out with positive mindset and had the intention of scoring freely off the second new ball. Bairstow played some flashy shots and finally perished.

112.6 J Hazlewood to Woakes, On a length around off, pushed off the front foot with the angle to covers. THAT SHALL BE TEA! 360/6

112.5 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Hits the deck hard again, Woakes rises up with the bounce and plays it with soft hands towards mid-wicket. 360/6

112.4 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Dug in short, Woakes sits under it in a jiffy. 360/6

112.3 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Bowls according to the plan this time, tries to strangle Woakes down the leg side. He moves inside the line and tries to fend it away but gets beaten. 360/6

112.2 J Hazlewood to Woakes, A bluff from Hazlewood. Bowls it full outside off, Woakes has his feet moving and strokes it through covers for a couple. 360/6

A short leg and leg gully in place now. The short ball is likely to come up.

112.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Angling into Cook who tucks it through mid-wicket for a single. 358/6

Last over before tea…

111.6 J Bird to Woakes, Lucky Woakes! On a length outside off, the batsman tries to withdraw but is late. The ball catches the bottom edge and goes past the slip cordon for a brace. The 50-run stand comes up as well. The longer it lasts, the frustrating it shall get for the hosts. 357/6

111.5 J Bird to C Woakes, Fuller in length, Woakes pushes at it but gets another outside edge but it falls short of the fielder in the slip cordon. 355/6

111.4 J Bird to Woakes, Fullish on off, defended solidly off the front foot. 355/6

111.3 J Bird to Woakes, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 355/6

111.2 J Bird to C Woakes, FOUR! Streaky again! On a drivable length outside off, Woakes falls for the bait and gets an outside edge past the slip region to pick up a boundary. The Barmy Army is cheering loudly. 355/6

111.1 J Bird to Woakes, Back of a length ball, answered nicely off the back foot. 351/6

110.6 J Hazlewood to Woakes, An in dipping low full toss, Woakes does well to play it through backward square leg for a run. 351/6

110.5 J Hazlewood to Woakes, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 350/6

Smith comes closer to the keeper now.

110.4 J Hazlewood to C Woakes, FOUR! Oh no, another one flies past the gap between the keeper and first slip. The edges fly at a lower height at the MCG and it is the keeper who needs to go for those catches. On a length around off, Woakes feels for it but gets an outside edge. Paine doesn’t go for the catch, neither does Smith and the ball flies past and reaches to the fence behind. Cricket. What a feeling! Is flashed on a board behind. Sums it up pretty nicely. 350/6

110.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, The batsman has played it through the point region. One run added to the total. 346/6

110.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a length this time, defended solidly off the back foot. 345/6

110.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, That’s a ripper! Good length ball coming in with the angle initially, Cook tries to defend it but the away seam movement catches him by surprise and he gets beaten all ends up. 345/6

109.6 J Bird to C Woakes, FOUR! Well played! Fullish ball outside off, Woakes creams it through extra cover. Warner from mid off gives a long hard chase but only comes second best. 345/6

109.5 J Bird to Cook, Pushed to the cover region by the batsman. The batsmen have run through for a single. 341/6

The commentators on air analyze about Cook’s weakness against the left-handed bowlers. He struggled against Starc earlier in the series. Last time when he toured Down Under, he was troubled a lot by Mitchell Johnson as well. Mohammed Amir from Pakistan and Zaheer Khan from India have also won a lot of battles against him.

109.4 J Bird to Cook, Back of a length again, Cook hangs back and pushes it back to Bird. 340/6

109.3 J Bird to Cook, The batsman has flicked the ball off his pads. 340/6

109.2 J Bird to Cook, Short of a length delivery, Cook hops and keeps it out towards short leg. 340/6

109.1 J Bird to Cook, A stifled appeal for an LBW is turned down. Back of a length on off, angling in. Cook looks to work it across but is hit on the thigh pad. The visitors appeal but bail out of it soon realizing that it was going down leg. 340/6

108.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good game awareness from Cook! Leans ahead to the fullish ball and mistimes his drive towards mid off. Calls for the single straightaway and reaches the danger end safely. There is a direct hit at the bowler’s end but no extra conceded. 340/6

108.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, Length delivery outside off, Cook doesn’t fiddle with it. 339/6

108.4 J Hazlewood to Cook, Goes fullish again, Cook jams it out past the bowler towards mid off. 339/6

108.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, Back of a length ball in the channel outside off, left alone. 339/6

Nathan Lyon is off the field at the moment. Not sure what the reason is. Australia are missing Mitchell Starc at the moment. He is really good against the tail as reflected by his stats in this series. Out of the 19 wickets, 11 were against the lower order.

108.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Shaping away a touch from Alastair. He has it covered and blocks it stoutly. 339/6

108.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Fuller in length around off, Cook comes forward confidently and strokes it to mid off. 339/6

107.6 J Bird to Woakes, Fullish delivery on off, Woakes defends it with a straight bat. 339/6

107.5 J Bird to Woakes, Shuffles across to the fullish delivery around off and pats it back to the bowler. 339/6

107.4 J Bird to Woakes, On a length around off, pushed off the front foot to mid off. 339/6

Signs of the wicket starting to deteriorate. In the first ball of this over, there was a bit of explosion after the ball hit the deck. The pitch scan also shows that the track has dried up considerably as compared to Day 1 and Day 2. The spinners will come more into play as the game progresses.

107.3 J Bird to Woakes, Shortish delivery outside off, Chris waits for it and plays it with an angled blade to point. 339/6

107.2 J Bird to Woakes, Similar length ball, defended solidly off the back foot. 339/6

107.1 J Bird to Woakes, That’s a peach! Back of a length delivery outside off, shaping in a touch with a lot of zip. Woakes has a poke at it but is beaten all ends up. Almost brushed the outside edge on its way through. 339/6

Woakes is a good cricketer. However, he hasn’t played to his potential either with the bat or with the ball in the series. This is a good time to stand up and deliver the goods. Meanwhile, Jackson Bird comes back into the attack.

106.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Hazlewood steams in from around the wicket to Cook and angles in a length delivery. Cook knows where his off stump is and makes an assured leave. 339/6

106.5 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Nice timing from Woakes! Leans ahead to the length delivery around off, allows the ball to meet the full face of the bat and drives it sweetly through covers to pick up three runs to his name. 339/6

106.4 J Hazlewood to Woakes, A bit ahead of a length outside off, Woakes goes for a flashy drive but mistimes it to wide mid off. 336/6

106.3 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Similar length ball, angling in. Woakes shuffles and taps it to mid on. 336/6

106.2 J Hazlewood to Woakes, Fullish ball around off, a bit of nibble in the air. Woakes pushes it with an angled blade to gully. 336/6

106.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Well bowled! On a back of a length, straightens a touch after pitching. Cook adjusts in his crease and plays it with soft hands towards covers for a run. 336/6

Hazlewood is back on.

105.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Uses his feet to the loopy delivery and eases it towards mid on. Lyon has bowled well from over the wicket today. Good variations and subtle changes of paces have kept the batsmen guessing. 335/6

105.5 N Lyon to Woakes, Fuller in length around off, Chris defends it down the track. 335/6

105.4 N Lyon to Woakes, Spinning in from a shorter length, tucked off the back foot to mid-wicket. 335/6

105.3 N Lyon to Woakes, Slow through the air, leans ahead confidently and strokes it to mid on. 335/6

105.2 N Lyon to Woakes, Tossed up around off, driven off the front foot to mid off. 335/6

105.1 N Lyon to C Woakes, Fullish delivery outside off, Woakes whips it towards mid on. 335/6

104.6 M Marsh to Cook, Drags his length back a touch, it’s on middle and off, Cook shuffles a bit and taps it to mid on. 335/6

104.5 M Marsh to A Cook, Marsh continues to bowl full, Alastair leans ahead and drives it nicely to mid off. 335/6

104.4 M Marsh to Cook, Full ball well outside off, Cook doesn’t bother to play at it. 335/6

104.3 M Marsh to Cook, On a length outside off, Alastair cuts it through covers and picks up a couple to his name. 335/6

104.2 M Marsh to Cook, Paine is standing up to the stumps now. Very full outside off, Cook lets it be and Paine fails to collect it cleanly and parries it behind. 333/6

104.1 M Marsh to Cook, FOUR! Pure timing and class! Back of a length ball outside off, Cook stands tall and times his punch to perfection. He beats the two men at short cover and picks up a boundary. 333/6

103.6 N Lyon to Cook, Darted in on the stumps, Alastair eases it through mid on for a run. 329/6

103.5 N Lyon to Cook, Leans ahead and strokes the tossed up ball to covers. 328/6

103.4 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker on middle, pushed back to Lyon. 328/6

103.3 N Lyon to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 328/6

103.2 N Lyon to Cook, Angling into Cook who defends it nicely. 328/6

103.1 N Lyon to Woakes, The MCG crowd is up on its feet and cheers for England. They are into the lead now and this is the first time in the series that the visitors have gone ahead of the opposition. Fullish ball, Woakes eases it to covers for a single. 328/6

102.6 M Marsh to Cook, Shaping across Cook who doesn’t fiddle with it. 327/6

102.5 M Marsh to Woakes, The scores are level now. Short ball, pulled through backward square leg for a single. 327/6

102.4 M Marsh to Cook, Full length ball, Cook leans into it and strokes it to sweeper cover for a single. There are three catching men at covers waiting but he does well to find the gap. 326/6

102.3 M Marsh to Cook, On a length and leaving the southpaw, Alastair plants his front foot across and lets it go. 325/6

102.2 M Marsh to Cook, Full length ball attacking the stumps, Cook puts his bat down and eases it to mid on. 325/6

102.1 M Marsh to Cook, Back of a length ball on middle, played with soft hands past Marsh. 325/6

101.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Flat and quick on off, kept out watchfully. 325/6

101.5 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker one, Cook is hurried a bit and gets it off the inner half to backward square leg. A run taken. 325/6

101.4 N Lyon to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 324/6

101.3 N Lyon to Cook, Oohs and Aahs from the Australians. Coming in with the arm, Cook fails to clip it as the ball hits his pads and lobs to Bancroft at short leg who takes it. The Australians appeal but bail out of it soon realizing that there was no bat involved. 324/6

101.2 N Lyon to Cook, Tossed up ball, played with soft hands to mid off. 324/6

101.1 N Lyon to Cook, Sliding down leg, Cook fails to clip it. A rare miss from Paine behind the stumps as he fails to take it cleanly. 324/6

100.6 M Marsh to Cook, Good length ball, Cook does well to steer it through point to pick up a single. 324/6

Three catching covers in place.

100.5 M Marsh to Cook, Back of a length ball, angling across the southpaw and staying a bit low. Cook crouches and goes for a cut but the ball passes under his bat. Not a bad ploy to bowl at him from over the wicket. 323/6

100.4 M Marsh to Woakes, Back of a length ball on off, Woakes swivels and pulls it past short leg towards deep mid-wicket. A single taken. 323/6

100.3 M Marsh to Woakes, Fuller in length around off, shaping in. Woakes gets to the pitch of the ball and eases it to short cover. 322/6

100.2 M Marsh to A Cook, Short and width on offer, Cook places it through point and takes a single. 322/6

100.1 M Marsh to Cook, Length delivery outside off, going away further. Cook points his bat skywards to let it be. 321/6

Mitchell Marsh is brought in for a burst.

99.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Slow turn from a length, Woakes goes back and safely keeps it out towards cover. 321/6

99.5 N Lyon to Woakes, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 321/6

99.4 N Lyon to Woakes, Quicker through the air around middle and off, blocked. 321/6

99.3 N Lyon to A Cook, Tossed up on off, driven towards mid off for a single. 321/6

99.2 N Lyon to Cook, Another short ball, Cook goes back and punches it through the gap at cover to pick up a brace. 320/6

99.1 N Lyon to Cook, Lyon drops it short outside off, punched off the back foot towards cover. 318/6

Drinks on the field.

98.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Was that a catch? Oh yes, Steven Smith drops another but it was struck really well. The Aussie skipper can’t believe it and is down on the ground. He dropped one when Cook was on 66 and once again puts him down. Shortish ball on middle, comes up at a good height as Cook pulls it away. It travels towards square leg where Steven Smith puts in a quick dive to his right but the ball doesn’t stick in his right palm. It rolls further and they take a single. The trail comes under 10 now. 318/6

98.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length delivery, angling in, worked towards mid-wicket by shuffling across. 317/6

98.4 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Another well-directed bumper, Woakes pulls it along the ground towards fine leg for a single. 317/6

98.3 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Nearly… nearly gets a wicket! Cummins is troubling Woakes with the shorter ones. Another one right on the money, Woakes can’t sway, can’t play and in the end fends it awkwardly. The ball pops off the splice and just lobs over short leg. 316/6

98.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Controls it well but there is a man out there! Shortish delivery on middle, Cook swivels just a touch and plays a controlled pull towards deep square leg for a single. 316/6

98.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Sprays it wider on off, Cook has no qualms in leaving that alone. 315/6

97.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Lands it full on off, Chris Woakes is quick to bring his bat down to end the over. 315/6

97.5 N Lyon to Woakes, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 315/6

97.4 N Lyon to Woakes, Goes back and works it with the spin past short leg. 315/6

97.3 N Lyon to Woakes, This one stays low! Turns in from a length, Woakes literally has to crouch low to defend it down. Had he missed, he would have been dead plumb. 315/6

97.2 N Lyon to Woakes, Quicker through the air on middle and off, kept out off the back foot. 315/6

97.1 N Lyon to Woakes, Flighted delivery outside off, Chris Woakes presses forward in defense. 315/6

96.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Touch fuller outside off, blocked off the front foot. 315/6

96.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Struck on the pads! Brings it back from a length outside off, Cook is beaten for pace and wears it on the pads. A stifled appeal but the angle seems to have taken it down leg. 315/6

96.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, After bowling short balls, Cummins goes full to Cook from around the wicket. AC pushes it back to the bowler who sticks his right hand out to stop it. 315/6

96.3 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Angles it in from a length around off, Woakes tries to work it away. Dribbles it off the inner half through square leg and gets to the other end. 315/6

96.2 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Bouncer! The batsman ducks under the bouncer at the last moment. 314/6

96.1 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Bangs in a short one, just outside off. Woakes hops to fend it away but gets it off the splice as the ball falls just short of Khawaja at gully. 314/6

95.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Darted on middle and leg, driven towards deep mid on by Woakes and he gets off the mark. 314/6

95.5 N Lyon to Cook, On middle and leg, Cook makes room and pushes it towards extra cover. Bird from mid off moves to his right and dives to stop it but cannot prevent the single. Seems to have hurt his shoulder as well. 313/6

95.4 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting in on middle and leg, Alastair prods forward and stonewalls it. 312/6

95.3 N Lyon to Cook, Loopy delivery outside off, AC lunges forward in defense. 312/6

95.2 N Lyon to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 312/6

95.1 N Lyon to Cook, Tosses it up outside off, defended off the front foot. 312/6

94.6 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Goes short again but the line is down the leg side this time. Woakes is happy to duck under it. 312/6

94.5 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Back of a length ball on middle and off, dealt off the back foot. 312/6

94.4 Pat Cummins to Woakes, Cummins is bending his back! He hits the deck hard again, too good for any batsman as Woakes ducks to let it sail over him to the keeper. 312/6

94.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Another short ball on middle and leg, tucked comfortably behind square on the leg side for one by Cook. 312/6

94.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shortish around middle and off, defended off the back foot. 311/6

94.1 Cummins to A Cook, FOUR! Top edge but it flies safely! 150 up for Alastair Cook. 11th time he has reached the landmark, third time against Australia. Phenomenal! Cummins bangs in a short ball, Cook is in a tangle as he tries to play the hook shot. Gets a top edge but much to his delight the ball flies safely over the keeper for a boundary. Raises his bat and gets a warm applause from the crowd. 311/6

93.6 N Lyon to Woakes, Drops it short on off, defended off the back foot. 307/6

93.5 N Lyon to Woakes, Quicker and flatter through the air on middle, the batsman hangs back in defense. 307/6

93.4 N Lyon to Woakes, The batsman defends it from within the crease. 307/6

93.3 N Lyon to Woakes, Comes forward and bunts it back to Lyon. 307/6

93.2 N Lyon to Woakes, Flighted delivery around middle and off, Woakes defends it down. 307/6

Chris Woakes strides out next.

93.1 Lyon to Ali, OUT! Got him! What a catch by Shaun Marsh! Spectacular stuff from him and his mates barge towards him. Steven Smith likes it and lets out a huge roar. Lyon wins the battle again, 6th time in the series he has dismissed Moeen Ali. Third one in the game for him and boy, Australia are on the charge now. He drops it a bit short and serves it around off, Ali rocks back to punch it over cover but Shaun Marsh at short extra cover times his leap to perfection to take a stunning catch over his head. Just brilliant! Moeen Ali was trying to take the offie on and now has to make his way back. England trail by 20 runs! 307/6

92.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, The batsman has punched that ball through the off side. 307/5

92.5 Pat Cummins to Ali, Bangs in a short one again, Ali looks to pull but gets it off the inner half down to fine leg for a single. 307/5

92.4 Pat Cummins to Ali, Shortish and outside off, Ali resists and lets it be. 306/5

92.3 Pat Cummins to Ali, FOUR! Ali is living dangerously here! Short of a length delivery, on the body of Moeen. He looks to pull but isn’t in complete control. The ball flies right between the fine leg fielder and deep square leg fielder and goes to the fence. 306/5

92.2 Pat Cummins to Ali, Bouncer! The batsman ducks under the bouncer at the last moment. 302/5

92.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length delivery, angling in from around the wicket, clipped through mid-wicket for a single. 302/5

Pat Cummins into the attack now.

91.6 N Lyon to M Ali, Just over short cover! This is turning out to be a good battle between the two! Lyon tosses it up again, Ali makes room and just chips it over a leaping short cover fielder for a couple. An eventful over comes to an end, 12 off it. 301/5

91.5 N Lyon to Ali, Flatter one on the stumps, defended down off the back foot. 299/5

91.4 N Lyon to Ali, Quicker through the air, outside off, left alone. 299/5

91.3 N Lyon to Ali, The batsman shows the full face of the bat and defends the ball off the back foot. 299/5

91.2 N Lyon to Ali, FOUR! Uppish but safe again! Tosses it up generously outside off, Ali looks to go after it again. Gets it past the man at short cover for a boundary. 299/5

91.1 N Lyon to Ali, SIX! In the air… just over Cummins! What is Ali doing here? Tries to take Lyon on and nearly pays the price. The offie bowls it slower through the air, Moeen dances down the track to go big down the ground but is done in by the flight. Miscues it high in the air and shouts of CATCH IT! follows. Pat Cummins who is placed at deepish mid on backtracks, keeps his eyes on the ball but is aware that the momentum might take him further. By the time he tries to take it, the ball sails over the fence. They check if it’s a biggie or not, replays show it really is. Lyon has dismissed Ali five times in the series and nearly got him for the 6th time. 295/5

90.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Fuller in length and outside off, Cook leans forward and drives it through cover. Once again in the gap and they take a couple. 289/5

90.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 287/5

90.4 J Hazlewood to M Ali, Takes on the short ball this time! Good reply from Ali. Expects another short ball, is up for the task as he pulls it through mid-wicket. Won’t get a boundary but will get three. 287/5

With a lot of buzz going around as to why didn’t Dawid Malan take the review, here is one more example which could have gone in his favour. Just now they have shown another replay in which not only an inside edge is spotted but also the impact is outside the line. Well, well, got to say, it was a lucky breakthrough for the Aussies…

90.3 Hazlewood to Ali, A well-directed bouncer which must have shaken Ali up! Hazlewood hits the deck hard, gets extra bounce as Ali looks to sway away from the line. It goes off something past the right of the keeper to the fence. Was it off the gloves? Nope, replays confirm it went off the helmet and so, leg byes signalled by the umpire. 284/5

90.2 J Hazlewood to Ali, The batsman shows the full face of the bat and defends the ball off the back foot. 280/5

90.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a shorter length and angling in, Cook turns it through square leg for a single. 280/5

Moeen Ali is the new man in.

89.6 N Lyon to Bairstow, OUT! Nathan Lyon at it again! Good bowling, good catch from Paine as well! Australia strike early in the session, just what they wanted. The bowling change does the trick again. Lyon pushes it quicker through the air, bowls it short and it turns back in with extra bounce. Bairstow goes back to cut but the length isn’t a good one to play that kind of a shot. Gets a faint tickle and Tim Paine behind the stumps gathers it. Not an easy take, that. Half the English side back in the hut and they are still behind by 48 runs. 279/5

89.5 N Lyon to Bairstow, Pitches it around middle, turning back in, Bairstow clips it with the turn past short leg. 279/4

89.4 N Lyon to Bairstow, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 279/4

89.3 N Lyon to Bairstow, Flatter one on the stumps, the batsman hangs back in defense. 279/4

89.2 N Lyon to Cook, Lyon drops it short and outside off, Cook rocks back in a flash and punches it through the gap at cover. Picks up three runs for doing so. The trail comes under 50 now. 279/4

89.1 N Lyon to Cook, Comes around the wicket and floats it up wider outside off, Alastair with an angled bat pushes it towards backward point. 276/4

Nathan Lyon is brought into the attack now. A slip and bat-pad in place. Let’s see what can he do with the cherry being a new one.

88.6 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Bangs in a short ball, just like he did in the previous over. Yet again the line is down the leg side. Easily left alone by JB. 276/4

88.5 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Perfect length from Josh! He keeps it on the stumps, a bit fuller, Jonny stays rooted inside the crease to keep it out on the leg side. 276/4

88.4 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, On a length and outside off, punched off the back foot towards cover. 276/4

88.3 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Angles it in on middle, Jonny hops back to tuck it towards short mid-wicket. 276/4

88.2 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Keeps it nice and full on the stumps, wristed towards mid on. 276/4

88.1 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Flashy from Jonny! Hazlewood goes wide of the crease and bowls it on a length on off. It’s too close to the off pole to cut and Bairstow still decides to hit one. Gets beaten all ends up. 276/4

87.6 J Bird to Bairstow, Slants it in on middle and leg again, Jonny tries to repeat the previous shot but gets it off the inner half this time as the ball rolls towards square leg. They steal a single. In fact, the umpire signals it as a leg bye. 276/4

87.5 J Bird to Bairstow, FOUR! Wayward from Bird! Too straight from him, it’s a cross seam delivery down the leg side. All Jonny had to do was to get some bat on it, he does so and Paine behind the stumps, despite a full stretch dive to his left couldn’t cut it off. Races away to the fine leg fence for a boundary. 275/4

87.4 J Bird to Bairstow, Bangs in a short one, some extra bounce for Jackson but Bairstow is quick to sit under it. 271/4

87.3 J Bird to Bairstow, Fuller on the stumps, Jonny goes for the drive but gets it off the toe end as the ball rolls towards mid on. 271/4

87.2 J Bird to Cook, Length ball on middle, turned behind square on the leg side for an easy single. 271/4

87.1 J Bird to Cook, Fuller and veering in on middle and leg, AC drives it towards mid on where Warner moves swiftly to his left to stop it. 270/4

86.6 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Right behind the line to this full length delivery is Jonny. Keeps it out towards cover. 270/4

86.5 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Tries to go short but the line isn’t right. It’s down the leg side which allows the batsman to evade it easily. 270/4

86.4 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Slightly fuller, good line from Josh and another front foot defense on offer. 270/4

86.3 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Pitches it right up there outside off, Bairstow drives it towards short cover. 270/4

86.2 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Fuller in length and outside off, the English keeper strides ahead in defense. 270/4

86.1 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Good aggressive running! Hazlewood angles it on the pads, Bairstow clips it neatly behind square on the leg side and calls for two. The fielder in the deep has a lot of ground to cover which allows the pair to complete the second. 270/4

Josh Hazlewood to continue from the other end. Same field for him as well.

85.6 J Bird to Cook, FOUR! Lovely straight drive from Cook! Bird in his quest to bring it back in, overpitches it by a margin. Cook doesn’t miss out as he leans forward and caresses it down the ground past Bairstow for a boundary. Effortless from Alastair! 268/4

85.5 J Bird to Cook, Good length ball outside off, defended firmly towards mid off. 264/4

85.4 J Bird to A Cook, Goes fuller, it’s just outside off, the southpaw leans to drive it through but mistimes it towards short cover. 264/4

85.3 J Bird to Cook, On a length and coming back in a touch, Cook is squared up a bit as he defends this one with an angled bat towards point. 264/4

85.2 J Bird to Cook, Fuller and angling in from outside off, another tight defense from Alastair. 264/4

85.1 J Bird to Cook, Bird starts the session from around the wicket and bowls a back of a length delivery on off, Cook stays solid behind the line to keep it out. 264/4

We are back for the post-lunch session. There is a cloud cover now. Alastair Cook and Jonny Bairstow will resume their innings. Jackson Bird to continue his spell. Two slips and a gully in place. Here we go…

… Day 3, Session 2 …

Josh Hazlewood then came back breathing fire with the second new ball to trap Malan in front who for some reason didn’t take the review. For the visitors, Alastair Cook is still out there batting on 134 and has Bairstow for company. Their hopes shall be pinned on the senior man to keep digging in and take them into the lead. Will that happen? Or will the hosts’ bowlers come out afresh and run through the lower middle order? Should be another action-packed session. Join us back shortly to see what happens next…

A pretty eventful session comes to an end! Australia will be a bit more happy as they were able to break the overnight stand between Root and Cook. Their bowlers were right on the money throughout and didn’t offer much freebies. They frustrated the batsmen to quite an extent by keeping a lid on the scoring rate which eventually brought them success. Pat Cummins, who was unwell yesterday, removed the dangerous Root just when he was eyeing a big one.

84.6 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Good ball to end the session! Josh goes wide of the crease and angles it in from around off, Jonny Bairstow once again lets it through. THAT’S LUNCH ON DAY 3! England trail by 63 runs! 264/4

84.5 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Shortish and outside off, JB hangs back to punch it towards cover. 264/4

84.4 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Fuller in length and coming back in from over the wicket, Bairstow plants his front foot across and then lifts his bat to make a leave. That nearly kissed the off pole. 264/4

84.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, Shortish on middle and leg, AC swivels to pull it along the ground towards deep backward square leg for a single. 264/4

84.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good leave! Hazlewood hurls it on a length outside off, it comes back in with the angle as Cook makes an assured leave. 263/4

84.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good length delivery, in the corridor outside off, Alastair is rock solid in defense. 263/4

Last over coming up before lunch. Can Australia pick up another one?

83.6 J Bird to Bairstow, Good length on middle, tucked towards the leg side. 263/4

83.5 J Bird to Bairstow, Angling in from outside off, a push back to the bowler off the front foot. 263/4

83.4 J Bird to Bairstow, FOUR! Through the slip cordon! This must be frustrating for the Aussies! Bird nicely bowls it full, lures Bairstow into a drive who obliges. The ball moves away a bit, takes a fat edge and flies right between second slip and gully for a streaky boundary. 263/4

83.3 J Bird to Bairstow, What is Bairstow trying to do here? It was on a length and stayed a bit low as well, Bairstow tries to pull but is undone by the low bounce. This wasn’t a ball to play the pull shot. 259/4

83.2 J Bird to Bairstow, On a back of a length outside off, Bairstow looks to hit it through the line but gets an inside edge on the pads. We saw this happening a lot of times when Australia were batting. Should be careful, Jonny. 259/4

83.1 J Bird to Bairstow, Too straight from Jackson Bird, fuller and on the pads, Jonny Bairstow works it through mid-wicket for a couple. 259/4

82.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good length delivery, leaving the southpaw. He points his bat skywards to allow it through. 257/4

82.5 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, Well played. Fraction straight from Hazlewood, there is very little margin for error when you are bowling to Bairstow. He stays well-balanced and clips it through mid-wicket to pick up three runs to his name. 257/4

82.4 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, That flew off the bat! Fullish ball, shaping in. Bairstow leans ahead and just pushes it with great timing to mid on. 254/4

82.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, Short delivery, sits up nicely for the southpaw. He pulls it through backward square leg to rotate strike. 254/4

82.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Pitched up outside off, Alastair presses forward and strokes it to mid off. 253/4

82.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Full length ball, swinging in substantially. Cook smothers it down towards mid on. 253/4

81.6 J Bird to Bairstow, FOUR! Delightful stuff! Bird goes full, searching for some swing but dishes it pretty full outside off. Bairstow leans forward and times his drive well to beat Warner at mid off and picks up a boundary. 253/4

81.5 J Bird to Bairstow, A watchful leave from JB. Bird keeps it full outside off, nothing doing from Jonny. 249/4

81.4 J Bird to Bairstow, Angles it in from around middle and off, Jonny stays back to defend it towards the bowler. 249/4

81.3 J Bird to Bairstow, Pitches it up on off, Bairstow presses forward and defends it towards cover. 249/4

81.2 J Bird to Bairstow, The batsman shoulders arms to let that one through. 249/4

81.1 J Bird to Bairstow, Comes forward to this full ball and defends it down gently. 249/4

Double change as Jackson Bird comes on to bowl.

80.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Another shout for an LBW! Fuller and swinging back in on middle and leg, Cook falls over in his attempted flick shot and gets hit on the pads. The appeal dies down as it was clearly going down leg. 249/4

80.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, In the channel outside off, AC makes a watchful leave. 249/4

80.4 J Hazlewood to J Bairstow, Fuller in length and just outside off, Jonny leans forward and drives it through cover. Warner from mid off hares after it to save a run for his side. 249/4

80.3 J Hazlewood to Bairstow, On a length and a bit wide outside off, Jonny shoulders his arms to let it be. 246/4

Jonny Bairstow is the next batsman in.

80.2 Hazlewood to Malan, OUT! Trapped in front! The new cherry works instantly for Australia and Josh Hazlewood is absolutely delighted! He comes from around the wicket and drops it on a fuller length around off, it nips back in appreciably. Malan stays rooted inside the crease to defend but the inward movement gets the better of him. He gets pinged on the pads and a loud appeal follows to which umpire S Ravi raises his finger. Malan walks across to Cook, thinks about the review but then decides against it. Hang on! Hang on! The replays show that there is a big deviation on that one. My word, even Hot Spot detects an edge. How come Dawid didn’t know about this? This is really strange. As a batsman you should know that you have nicked one. Anyway, he has to walk now. England need another 81 to go ahead of Australia for the first time in the series. 246/4

80.1 J Hazlewood to Malan, Good length delivery, in the channel outside off, Malan shoulders his arms. 246/3

The second new ball is available now and Steven Smith wastes no time in taking it. And Josh Hazlewood will be the one to taste it first. Can he strike?

79.6 N Lyon to Cook, Drops it short and outside off, Cook goes back and looks to cut it away. Gets it towards Warner at backward point who half stops it. 246/3

79.5 N Lyon to Cook, Goes around the wicket to Cook now and lands it full on middle, easily defended off the front foot. 246/3

79.4 N Lyon to Malan, Gets across and works it between short leg and leg slip for one. 246/3

79.3 N Lyon to Malan, Gives it nice loop, delivers it on middle and leg, it’s defended into the ground. 245/3

79.2 N Lyon to Malan, Flighted ball around middle and leg, Malan comes down the track and bunts it back to Lyon. 245/3

79.1 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting across Cook, on the shorter side, punched off the back foot towards point for a single. 245/3

78.6 M Marsh to Malan, Short and outside off, a bit of movement away, Malan initially looks to go after it but then bails out at the last moment. Marsh shares a smile with Dawid. 244/3

78.5 M Marsh to Malan, Good take from Paine! He has been really good behind the sticks! Short and down the leg side, Malan ducks under it. The ball was traveling before Paine puts in a full length dive to his right to cut that one off. 244/3

78.4 M Marsh to Malan, Fuller in length and angling in, Malan prods ahead and wrists it towards mid on. 244/3

78.3 M Marsh to Malan, Good length but the line is wide outside off, Dawid shoulders his arms. 244/3

78.2 M Marsh to Malan, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 244/3

78.1 M Marsh to Malan, Fuller in length and outside off, Malan goes after it but mistimes it towards short cover. 244/3

77.6 N Lyon to Cook, Down the leg side, Cook misses his flick and Paine behind the stumps is quick to take the bails off. No appeal from him as Cook was inside the crease. 244/3

77.5 N Lyon to Cook, Leading edge! Lyon’s ploy to come over the wicket seems to be working for him. He keeps it full around middle and leg, Cook closes the face of the bat early and ends up getting a leading edge which rolls safely towards cover. 244/3

77.4 N Lyon to Cook, Around middle and leg, Alastair looks to defend but once again gets it off the inner half and it lands just short of Cameron Bancroft at FSL. 244/3

77.3 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker one around middle and leg, Cook looks to clip but gets it off the inner half past short leg. 244/3

77.2 N Lyon to Cook, Once again floats it up on middle, defended into the ground. 244/3

77.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floats it up around middle and leg, Cook presses forward and defends it back to Nathan. 244/3

76.6 M Marsh to Malan, Pretty harmless again from Marsh, Dawid doesn’t bother going after it. 244/3

76.5 M Marsh to Malan, In the channel outside off, Malan shoulders his arms. 244/3

76.4 M Marsh to Malan, Length delivery on middle and off, defended by covering the line. 244/3

76.3 M Marsh to A Cook, Bowls it short on the body, Cook swivels as he rolls his wrists to play it through backward square leg for a single. 244/3

76.2 M Marsh to Cook, FOUR! Flawless from Cook! Marsh goes full, it’s on middle and off. Cook leans forward and presents a full face of the bat. Connects with the middle of the bat and mid on was a mere spectator. 243/3

76.1 M Marsh to Cook, Angling in from around off, Cook turns it towards mid-wicket. 239/3

75.6 N Lyon to Malan, The batsman rocks onto the back foot and punches the ball. 239/3

75.5 N Lyon to Cook, Darted on middle and leg, wristed past Cameron at short leg for one. 239/3

75.4 N Lyon to Cook, Inside edge! Bancroft at short leg did try his best to get to it! Around middle and leg, Cook lunges forward to defend but gets an inside edge on the pads as the ball lobs towards short leg. It was a bit straight, had it lobbed a bit squarer, Cook could have been in trouble. 238/3

75.3 N Lyon to Cook, Flatter one outside off, Alastair camps back and punches it through point for a couple. 238/3

75.2 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker one around middle and leg, Cook goes back and tucks it past short leg. 236/3

75.1 N Lyon to Cook, Lyon goes over the wicket and drifts this one across Cook who comes forward and kills it down. 236/3

74.6 M Marsh to Malan, Back of a length outside off, defended off the back foot gently. 236/3

74.5 M Marsh to Malan, Keeps it full again, outside off, Dawid presses forward and defends it with a straight bat towards cover. 236/3

74.4 M Marsh to D Malan, Fuller and angling in on middle, worked towards mid on. 236/3

74.3 M Marsh to Malan, This one nips back in a bit, Malan knows where his off stump is and makes a leave. 236/3

74.2 M Marsh to Malan, Angling in from a good length, defended back down. 236/3

74.1 M Marsh to Cook, Marsh begins his spell with a gentle loosener, Cook moves across and tucks it down to fine leg for a single. 236/3

Mitchell Marsh is brought into the attack now, replacing Cummins. Maybe, he wants to get through the next 6 overs quickly and then ask Cummins to have a go with the new cherry first.

73.6 N Lyon to Malan, Drifting in on middle and leg, Malan uses his feet and works it towards short mid-wicket. 235/3

73.5 N Lyon to Malan, Leans forward and across and buries it into the ground. 235/3

73.4 N Lyon to Malan, A bit wider outside off, pushed off the front foot towards mid off. 235/3

73.3 N Lyon to Malan, The batsman has played that off the front foot and into the ground. 235/3

73.2 N Lyon to Malan, Floats it up outside off, Dawid dances down the track and pushes it back to Lyon who is quick to collect and fire it back at the striker’s end. Malan was in though. 235/3

73.1 N Lyon to Cook, Slider from Lyon, a bit short outside off, Cook punches it towards Warner at point and calls for a brisk single. 235/3

72.6 Pat Cummins to D Malan, FOUR! More runs! Cummins seems to be frustrated now! Hurls it on a length, just outside off, Malan hangs back and looks to dab it away. Gets it off the outer half past Khawaja at gully for back-to-back boundaries. England trail by 93 runs. 234/3

72.5 Pat Cummins to Malan, FOUR! In the air… but safely through the gap! Fuller and a bit of away swing this time, Malan crouches low and looks to square drive this. It’s uppish but wide of Lyon at backward point for a boundary. A streaky one. 230/3

72.4 Pat Cummins to Malan, A bit too straight and swinging back in on middle and leg, at 140.2 kph. Malan misses his flick and Paine behind the stumps makes a diving stop to his right. 226/3

72.3 Pat Cummins to Malan, Good length delivery outside off, DW makes an easy leave. 226/3

72.2 Pat Cummins to Malan, A loud shout for an LBW! But the angle seems to take it down leg! Cummins brings it back in from around off, Malan shuffles and hops a bit to tuck it away but misses to wear it near the thigh pad. An appeal from the Aussies but nothing from the umpire. 226/3

72.1 Pat Cummins to Malan, Cummins from around the wicket, arrows in a length delivery on off, Malan with soft hands taps it towards point. 226/3

71.6 N Lyon to Cook, Cook takes a stride forward and defends it right in front of the silly point fielder. 226/3

71.5 N Lyon to Malan, Darted around the pads, worked behind square on the leg side for a single. 226/3

71.4 N Lyon to Malan, Flighted ball outside off, Dawid prods forward in defense. 225/3

71.3 N Lyon to Malan, Quicker through the air, angling in from around off, Malan does well to bring his bat down and defend. 225/3

71.2 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting in on the pads, Cook clips it through the gap at square leg for a single. 225/3

71.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floats it up outside off, pushed off the front foot towards mid off. 224/3

Time for Drinks.

70.6 Pat Cummins to Malan, On a length around off, shaping in. Malan covers the line and defends it solidly. 224/3

70.5 Pat Cummins to Malan, A sharp bouncer on middle and leg at 141.3 clicks, Malan sits under it in a jiffy. Cummins is working some serious pace here. His fast-arm action allows him to generate so much. 224/3

70.4 Pat Cummins to Malan, Short of a length outside off, holding its line. Malan doesn’t fiddle with it. 224/3

70.3 Pat Cummins to D Malan, FOUR! Is that a dropped chance? Low full toss around off, Malan is rooted inside the crease as he attempts to keep it out but gets an outside edge that flies past the gap between Paine and Smith and races to the fence behind. Well, the replays show that the ball hit the turf before flying behind. So, it was not a chance. 224/3

70.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Similar length ball, shaping in appreciably. Cook steers it past point to rotate strike. 220/3

70.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Short of a length around off, Cook hangs back and defends it towards covers. 219/3

69.6 N Lyon to Malan, Touch short and slower through the air, punched off the back foot. 219/3

69.5 N Lyon to Malan, Malan uses his feet, seemed to be done in the flight but somehow manages to push it towards cover. 219/3

69.4 N Lyon to Malan, Stays a bit low, angling in from off, Malan goes back and pushes it back to the bowler. 219/3

69.3 N Lyon to Malan, Slower one, landed full outside off, Dawid prods forward in defense. 219/3

69.2 N Lyon to Cook, Drops it short and outside off, flatter through the air, cut hard towards backward point where the fielder makes a diving stop to his right. A single taken. 219/3

69.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floats it up outside off, Cook comes forward to defend but gets it off the inner half towards the leg side. 218/3

68.6 Pat Cummins to Malan, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 218/3

Dawid Malan comes out to bat. He is the leading run-scorer for England in the Ashes so far and will be eager to play another substantial knock.

68.5 Cummins to Joe Root, OUT! Cummins draws first blood this morning! Big, big breakthrough. The hard work put in by Hazlewood and Bird has been a major reason for the English skipper’s downfall. Well-directed short ball around off, Root is not in a good position as the ball gets big on him but he still goes for the pull shot. Is beaten for pace and as a result, he ends up top edging it towards deepish square leg. Lyon who is stationed quite up from the ropes stays cool as a cucumber and pouches it safely. There was a set plan in place and Cummins executed it to perfection. Good captaincy from Smith. Well, Root is absolutely fuming. He throws his gloves near the boundary ropes and has an agonizing look on his face. This is the fourth time in the series that Cummins has got him. Yet again, he fails to convert a start. End of the 138-run stand. England trail by 109 runs. Is this the opening that Australia needed? 218/3

68.4 Pat Cummins to Root, Similar length ball around off, Root comes forward and pushes it towards mid off. 218/2

68.3 Pat Cummins to Root, Length ball around off, Root plays it with an angled blade to point. 218/2

68.2 Pat Cummins to Root, FOUR! Uses the pace of the ball to perfection! Back of a length and a bit of width on offer, Root waits for it and taps it deftly past the gully region for a boundary. 218/2

68.1 Pat Cummins to Root, Fuller in length around off, Root shuffles a bit and defends it with authority. 214/2

67.6 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker and flatter outside off, answered expertly from the back foot. 214/2

67.5 N Lyon to Cook, Ooh.. bring in a silly point in place as well Smith. Tossed up on off, Cook prods forward to defend but the ball hits the splice of his bat and falls down in the vacant silly point region. 214/2

67.4 N Lyon to Cook, Loopy ball around off, defended solidly off the front foot. 214/2

67.3 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting in towards Alastair who blocks it on the track. 214/2

67.2 N Lyon to Cook, Slow through the air on off, clipped with the angle to mid-wicket. 214/2

67.1 N Lyon to Cook, Fullish on middle, Cook prods forward in defense. 214/2

Nathan Lyon comes into the attack. A slip and short leg in place. Meanwhile, Smith also returns to the field.

66.6 Pat Cummins to Root, Hangs back to the back of the length ball and blocks it solidly. 214/2

Steven Smith is off the field at the moment and is sitting near the boundary ropes. The news coming in is that even he is suffering from a stomach bug. Peter Handscomb is the substitute in his place.

66.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Full delivery outside off, shaping in. Cook goes for a drive tentatively but gets it off the outer half past backward point. A run taken. 214/2

66.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, On a length outside off, angling in, Cook lets it go. 213/2

66.3 Pat Cummins to Root, The batsman flicks it away with a wristy shot. They pick up a single. 213/2

66.2 Pat Cummins to Root, Fullish delivery on off, shaping away a touch. Root comes forward and eases it to covers. 212/2

66.1 Pat Cummins to Root, Short of a length outside off, steered to backward point. 212/2

First change of the morning. Pat Cummins is brought into the attack. He has bowled 11 overs and wasn’t at his best due to stomach upset yesterday. Hope he is fine today. Can he provide a breakthrough?

65.6 J Bird to Cook, Very full outside off, Cook carves it through covers for a brace. 9 from the over, a good one for England. 212/2

65.5 J Bird to Cook, On a good length on off, driven sweetly to mid off. 210/2

65.4 J Bird to Cook, Driven through mid off by the batsman. 210/2

65.3 J Bird to Cook, FOUR! Shot! Cook is really strong whenever there is width on offer. Short delivery, Cook cuts it past the right side of backward point for a rocketing boundary. Not good from Bird, he needs to find his mark back. 210/2

Mark Taylor makes a good point on air. He says that when the ball is reversing, you need to shorten your foot movement a touch. Just lean ahead a touch and play your shots to account for the swing. When your foot movements are larger, there are chances of edges getting induced.

65.2 J Bird to Root, On a length outside off, Root comes forward a touch and creams it through covers. Picks up three runs for doing so. 206/2

65.1 J Bird to Root, Brilliant work! Back of a length outside off, Root places it towards Lyon at point who moves to his right and makes a good stop. Remember him hitting the bull’s eye from the same region in Brisbane to catch Vince short. 203/2

64.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a length around off, Cook defends it stoutly. 203/2

64.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, The batsman shoulders arms to let that one through. 203/2

64.4 J Hazlewood to Cook, Driven towards the mid on region. 203/2

64.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, Length ball outside off, Alastair comes forward confidently and blocks it solidly. 203/2

64.2 J Hazlewood to A Cook, Ooh.. just wide of the outstretched hands of Shaun Marsh. Another full delivery in the probing off stump channel. Cook goes for a drive but the bat turns in his hands. Ends up mistiming it towards short cover where Marsh dives to his right but the ball goes past him in a flash. A couple taken. 203/2

64.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Pitched right up there around off, eased off the front foot to wide mid off. 201/2

63.6 J Bird to Cook, Close shave! Full delivery on middle, swinging in. Cook is a bit late in bringing his bat down and aims to clip it square off the wicket on the leg side but gets it off the inner half to fine leg. He lost his shape while playing that and gets lucky. A single taken. 201/2

63.5 J Bird to Cook, Full delivery attacking the stumps, Cook eases it past Bird and towards mid on. 200/2

63.4 J Bird to A Cook, Fullish delivery, shaping away this time. Alastair presses forward and taps it to mid off. 200/2

63.3 J Bird to A Cook, Full delivery outside off, driven confidently off the front foot to the same region. 200/2

63.2 J Bird to Cook, On a length and in line of the stumps, Cook hangs back and eases it to mid off. 200/2

63.1 J Bird to A Cook, Overpitched around off, Cook drives it past silly mid off. 200/2

62.6 J Hazlewood to Joe Root, Back of a length outside off, patted to covers. 200/2

62.5 J Hazlewood to Root, This is beautiful bowling from Hazlewood. He is mixing up things and keeping Root on his toes. Goes wider of the crease and angles in a back of a length ball at 140.7 clicks. Root aims to steer it to third man but gets beaten. Hazlewood gives a long stare to the English skipper and sledges him. This is exciting stuff! 200/2

62.4 J Hazlewood to Root, Defended off the back foot by the batsman. 200/2

62.3 J Hazlewood to Root, A shout for a caught behind not given! Bill Lawry on air got excited and said got him, gone! Good length delivery angling down the leg side, Root looks to tuck it away but seems to have missed it. The ball goes off something and settles into the mitts of Tim Paine. The Australians appeal loudly but the umpire stays put. Smith walks across to Paine and asks about it. Hazlewood also has a loot at his skipper. They don’t go for the review. Rightly so, as the Snicko doesn’t spot any nick and shows that the ball brushed the thigh pad. He got out in a similar fashion in Perth. Needs to be careful. 200/2

62.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Back of a length ball outside off, pushed off the back foot to Khawaja again. 200/2

62.1 J Hazlewood to Joe Root, The edges keep coming! Full length ball around off, shaping away a touch. Root feels for it and gets a thick outside edge which falls well short of Khawaja at gully. Hazlewood is bowling really well. 200/2

61.6 J Bird to Cook, Bird shortens his length and bowls it around off, Cook shuffles a bit and pats it back to the bowler. 200/2

Nathan Lyon is warming up.

61.5 J Bird to Cook, The batsman rocks onto the back foot and punches the ball. 200/2

61.4 J Bird to Cook, Full length ball aimed at the base of the stumps, a bit of shuffle from Cook as he taps it to mid on. 200/2

61.3 J Bird to Cook, Full delivery, leaving the southpaw, he lets it go. 200/2

61.2 J Bird to Cook, On a length, slanting across, defended off the back foot to covers. 200/2

Hazlewood and Bird have been right on the money. They have bowled full, attacked the stumps and have induced false strokes. The field placing from Steven Smith has also been spot on. He is attacking and has made life difficult for the batsmen. The hosts have done their homework.

61.1 J Bird to Cook, Full ball on middle, eased off the front foot to mid on. 200/2

60.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Another streaky shot! On a drivable length outside off, a bit of nibble in the air. Cook pushes at it with hard hands and the ball flies off the outer half past backward point. Lyon hunts it down and saves a run for his side. 200 up for England. They trail by 127 now. 200/2

60.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a length in line of the stumps, probing lines again. Defended tentatively off the back foot to mid on. 197/2

60.4 J Hazlewood to Cook, Shaping inward from outside off, Alastair camps back and blocks it stoutly. 197/2

60.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, A surprise delivery, a great one to bowl early in the morning. Terrific yorker on off, Cook is alert to it and jams it out nicely. 197/2

60.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Right on the money again. Full delivery attacking the stumps, Cook lunges forward in defense. 197/2

60.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Well bowled! Angling in on a fullish length, Cook tries to work it through mid-wicket but gets a soft leading edge towards mid on. 197/2

59.6 J Bird to Root, In the zone outside off, left alone. Another probing over. 197/2

59.5 J Bird to Root, A bit risky but safe in the end. Root clips the fuller length ball through backward square leg. Takes on the long leg fielder and calls for two. The throw is a bit wayward which allows Joe to get back home safely. 197/2

59.4 J Bird to Root, Shortish ball outside off, pushed off the back foot to backward point. 195/2

59.3 J Bird to Root, Gets a fullish delivery to tail in substantially around off, Root comes forward and keeps it out. Bird is trying to get Root playing across the line and bring the LBW into play. 195/2

59.2 J Bird to Root, Good length ball well outside off, Joe hangs back and places it towards Lyon at backward point who is quick to stop it. 195/2

59.1 J Bird to Root, Full length ball around off, Root with a high elbow defends it solidly. 195/2

58.6 J Hazlewood to A Cook, Edged but safe! A bit fuller this time, angling in appreciably. Cook pokes at it and gets an outside edge that falls short of the gully fielder. Actually there are two fielders standing close to each other in the gully region. Good start from Hazlewood. 195/2

58.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, Once again lands it in the zone of apprehension, good probing channel from Hazlewood. Cook plants his front foot across and makes an assured leave. 195/2

58.4 J Hazlewood to Cook, Length delivery on the fourth stump channel, Alastair stays within the crease and blocks it. 195/2

58.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good pace from Hazlewood. On a similar length at 140.1 clicks, Cook hangs back and plays it with an angled bat to point. 195/2

58.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Hazlewood comes from around the wicket to Cook and bowls a good length ball on off. The southpaw stands tall and defends it stoutly. 195/2

58.1 J Hazlewood to Root, Makes use of the depth of the crease and turns the length delivery through mid-wicket to rotate strike. 195/2

Josh Hazlewood to bowl from the other end.

57.6 J Bird to Root, 35th Test fifty for Joe Root! Shortish delivery and room on offer, Root cuts it towards gully who dives to his left and makes a partial stop. A run is taken. Root raises his bat and is cheered loudly by the crowd. It has been a captain’s knock from him so far. The important thing for him is to convert it into a big one. 194/2

57.5 J Bird to Root, Good length ball around off, punched off the back foot towards mid off. 193/2

57.4 J Bird to Root, Shaping in appreciably on a fuller length from around off, Joe comes forward to account for the swing and defends it down the track. 193/2

57.3 J Bird to Root, Fullish ball, angling in, Root puts his head down and defends it calmly. The Englishmen in the crowd cheer for their side. 193/2

57.2 J Bird to Cook, England get going! Back of a length ball, slanting across, Cook punches it towards point. Bancroft moves to his left, dives and makes a half stop but fails to stop the single. 193/2

57.1 J Bird to Cook, Starts off with a length ball in the off stump corridor, seaming away after pitching. Cook points his bat skywards to allow it through. 192/2

We are ready to get rolling. The players and the umpires make their way to the middle. The conditions are overcast. The ball will move around in the first hour and the hosts need to capitalize on that. Alastair Cook and Joe Root to continue their innings. It will be Jackson Bird to start off the proceedings with the ball. A slip, a silly mid off and a gully in place. Here we go…

We know that the home side is a tough unit and an epitome of competitiveness. A few quick wickets in the morning and you never know, they might just pull back the initiative. The promising sign for them is that a few cracks are opening up and Lyon got appreciable bounce and turn at times. Will the Aussies turn things around? Or will the tourists remain on top? A bit of weather concern as a shower or two is predicted in the afternoon but let’s hope they stay away…

Australia, on the other hand, failed to find answers on a flat track. We saw how the hosts struggled due to Pat Cummins not being his hundred percent. They need him to be up and running today. The injury to Mitchell Starc has also weakened their bowling attack. It was the sheer pace that troubled the Englishmen earlier.

Hello and a warm welcome to the coverage of Day 3 of the MCG Test. It is said that when you have nothing to lose, you express yourself and play with a lot of freedom. That is what we got to see from England yesterday. The Ashes is much more than just playing for pride. Riding on Cook’s sublime ton and Root’s solidity, the visitors will be striving to push Australia further on the back foot. It is important for them that the duo continue to flourish.

… Day 3, Session 1 …

The fact that Pat Cummins struggled due to an upset stomach made life difficult for the hosts as he has been their key bowler so far. Right then, the away side are placed nicely at the moment and can’t afford the match to slip away. We know that if you give the Australians an inch, they will make a yard for themselves. Will the Englishmen continue to dictate terms? Or will the home side fight back just like England did in the morning session today? Join us tomorrow for Day 3 at 1030 local (2330 GMT, previous day) to catch all the action. Till then, cheers!

When the visitors came out to bat, they responded well. Though Stoneman departed early and Vince failed to capitalize on a start (strangely not taking a review), Cook and Root batted sensibly and kept the scoreboard ticking. The Australian bowlers were a bit off colour apart from Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon. The quickie got good reverse swing while the spinner extracted good purchase on some occasions and ended up picking a wicket apiece.

Earlier, England bowled brilliantly and triggered a collapse after dismissing Smith, thereby picking up 7 wickets for only 67 runs. They were high on intensity today which was largely missing on this tour. The results are there to see.

Alastair Cook and Joe Root head back to the dressing room with big smiles on their faces. England have completely controlled the proceedings on Day 2 and only trail by 135 runs now with eight wickets in hand. After facing a lot of criticism for failing with the bat, Cook has answered his critics with a majestic knock. The southpaw was positive from the word go, played some eye-catching strokes and has scored a much-needed ton. He was given a life when he was dropped on 66 by Smith and has made the most of it.

56.6 S Smith to A Cook, Short ball on leg stump, pulled to fine leg for a single. 11 from the over, not what Australia would have hoped for. That shall be STUMPS on day 2, England trail by 135 runs! 192/2

56.5 S Smith to Cook, Full ball outside off, played with an open bat face to point. 191/2

56.4 S Smith to Cook, FOUR! Take a bow, Alastair Cook! A great display of temperament and composure. Reaches his 32nd Test hundred in deserving style and is absolutely elated! He needed this, England needed this and finally it has come. He last scored an Ashes ton way back in 2011. That’s 35 innings ago, woah! Coming back to the ball, it is a half-tracker on leg stump. Cook rocks back and pulls it through backward square leg to reach to the milestone in style. Lifts his bat towards the dressing room and gets a huge round of applause from the MCG crowd as well. Well played, Cooky. 191/2

56.3 S Smith to Cook, Cook moves to 99, look at the urgency in his running. Plays this one with soft hands through square leg. By the time the fielder reaches the ball and throws it back, Cook hares back for the second. 187/2

56.2 S Smith to Cook, Tossed up on middle, clipped with the spin to mid-wicket. 185/2

56.1 S Smith to Cook, FOUR! Freebie for Cook and he relishes on it! He won’t mind Smith bowling this over. Gets easy for him to milk runs and he is inching closer to his ton. Juicy full toss on middle and leg, Cook clips it through wide mid on to pick up a boundary. 185/2

Steven Smith brings himself into the attack. 2 overs to go in the day and hence the move as time is running out.

55.6 N Lyon to Root, Drifting across Root who remains composed in his defense. 181/2

55.5 N Lyon to Root, On middle and leg, patted back to bowler. 181/2

55.4 N Lyon to Cook, Fullish ball on middle, Cook leans ahead and taps it to mid on for a single. 181/2

55.3 N Lyon to Cook, Tossed up wider outside off, eased off the front foot to the same region. 180/2

55.2 N Lyon to Cook, Quick and flat on off, punched to covers. 180/2

55.1 N Lyon to Cook, A bit risky! Cook once again exposes his stumps to an incoming delivery and chops it from the off stump towards backward point. 180/2

54.6 Pat Cummins to Root, On a length, angling in sharply. Tucked off the back foot to mid-wicket. 180/2

54.5 Pat Cummins to Root, Overpitched outside off, driven sweetly but finds the man at mid off. 180/2

54.4 Pat Cummins to Root, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 180/2

54.3 Pat Cummins to Joe Root, Textbook stuff from Root! Similar length ball, Root leans ahead and with a high elbow eases it to mid off. 180/2

54.2 Pat Cummins to Root, Fullish delivery around off, Root accounts for the swing and defends it solidly. 180/2

54.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length outside off, Cook taps it through covers for an easy single. That brings the 100-run stand up between the duo. These two have been solid as a rock. The point is can they continue to dominate? 180/2

53.6 N Lyon to Root, Tossed up ball, clipped to mid on. 179/2

53.5 N Lyon to Root, Quicker through the air and skids on, Root tries to punch it but gets a bottom edge towards slip. 179/2

53.4 N Lyon to Root, Slow through the air on middle, answered with a straight bat. 179/2

53.3 N Lyon to Root, Floated outside off, played with soft hands to point. They search for a single but it is not there on offer. 179/2

53.2 N Lyon to Root, FOUR! Poor delivery and duly punished! Half-tracker on leg stump, Root rocks back and half pulls it behind square on the leg side to pick up another boundary. Moves to 49 with that. 179/2

53.1 N Lyon to Root, Floated on middle, defended solidly off the front foot. 175/2

52.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length ball around off, turned to square leg. 175/2

52.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Full toss on middle, clipped to mid-wicket. Cook will be disappointed with that. 175/2

Cook is looking really settled today. He is getting into good positions today and that has helped his cause. Shows how important head position and footwork is in Test cricket.

52.4 Pat Cummins to A Cook, FOUR! Cook continues to play freely. Moves into the nineties. Fullish delivery around off, Cook just pushes it past the bowler and through mid on. Warner from mid off hares after it, puts in a desperate dive near the ropes but fails to keep the ball in play. 175/2

52.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, The batsman defends it from within the crease. 171/2

52.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Cummins shortens the length and bowls it around off. Cook remains composed in his defense. 171/2

52.1 Cummins to Cook, Beautifully bowled! Yorker around off, Cook does well to jam it out. 171/2

51.6 N Lyon to Root, Punched off the back foot by the batsman. 171/2

51.5 N Lyon to Root, Well played! Hangs deep in the crease and tucks it past the diving mid-wicket fielder. Lot of open spaces and the batsmen return for a brace. 171/2

51.4 N Lyon to Cook, Edged but short! On yet another occasion, a ball falls short of the slip fielder. Tossed up on off, turning away sharply. Cook fishes at it tentatively and gets an outside edge. Smith is alert to it, dives to his left but the ball lands in front and goes past him. A run taken. 169/2

51.3 N Lyon to Cook, Fullish delivery on off, driven to deepish mid off. 168/2

51.2 N Lyon to Cook, Nicely bowled! Coming in with the arm and skids off the pitch. Cook is cramped for room as he keeps it out to the off side. 168/2

51.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floated delivery around off, blocked watchfully. 168/2

50.6 Pat Cummins to Root, Length ball, jagging in sharply. Root gets low and tucks it to mid-wicket. 168/2

50.5 Pat Cummins to Root, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 168/2

50.4 Pat Cummins to Root, FOUR! Root takes full toll off the loose delivery. Short delivery, the intention is correct but the execution isn’t. The line is on leg stump. Root swivels across and pulls it down through the vacant fine leg region to find the fence. Cummins has been struggling and here is another example of that. 168/2

50.3 Pat Cummins to Root, Very full delivery outside off, carved away with an open bat face to the same region. 164/2

50.2 Pat Cummins to Root, Similar length ball outside off, forced off the back foot to the point region. 164/2

50.1 Pat Cummins to Root, Good length ball around off, angling in. Root gets on top of the bounce and defends it nicely. 164/2

49.6 N Lyon to Root, Shuffles a bit and turns it through mid-wicket for a single. 164/2

49.5 N Lyon to Root, FOUR! Lucky Root! That could have easily gone back to disturb the stumps. Slow through the air and on a fullish length on off, Root kneels and goes for a full-fledged sweep but seems to have got a bottom edge. The ball beats the keeper and the leg slip and rolls to the fence behind. The replays show that the bottom edge led the ball between Root’s legs and just missed the stumps. How fortunate! 163/2

49.4 N Lyon to Root, Slower through the air on middle, Root waits for it and dead-bats it. 159/2

49.3 N Lyon to Root, Flatter ball, going away with the arm. Punched off the back foot to mid off. 159/2

49.2 N Lyon to Cook, The batsman works it down the leg side. The batsmen have run through for a single. 159/2

49.1 N Lyon to A Cook, Another good piece of fielding from Australia. Short ball, Cook cuts it with the spin towards backward point where Warner is quick to react and stops it well. 158/2

A bit of halt. The physio comes running in and attends to Joe Root. The skipper seems to have an issue with his right shoulder but is fine to continue. Final thirty minutes of the day coming up.

48.6 Pat Cummins to Root, On a length outside off, Root drives it nicely to covers but Shaun Marsh dives to make a good stop. 158/2

48.5 Pat Cummins to Root, The batsman has played it to the point region. 158/2

48.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Full length ball outside off, Cook leans into it and strokes it through covers. Won’t get a boundary but gets three to his name. This is also Cook’s best score at the MCG. 158/2

48.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Easy pickings. Too straight from Cummins and it’s on a length. Cook helps it through mid-wicket. It is going downhill and another couple results. 155/2

48.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length well outside off, Alastair chops it to the fielder at point. 153/2

48.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length ball on off, stays a bit low. Cook does well to adjust in his crease and tucks it through mid-wicket for a couple. 153/2

Pat Cummins returns for a bowl. He has been bogged down with an upset stomach. Can he find his rhythm and provide the much-needed breakthrough?

47.6 N Lyon to Root, Shouts of catch it but safe in the end. Hangs back and clips it uppishly past short leg for a brace. 150 up for England. 151/2

47.5 N Lyon to Root, The batsman has flicked the ball off his pads. 149/2

47.4 N Lyon to Joe Root, Nice loop and drift on that one, around off, patted to covers. 149/2

47.3 N Lyon to Root, Tossed up outside off, Root eases it to covers. 149/2

A very attacking field is being employed. A slip, short leg, gully, short cover and short mid-wicket in place. A real test of the temperament of the batsmen.

47.2 N Lyon to Root, Spinning down the leg side, Root misses his flick. Paine collects it really well. He has been pretty sharp. 149/2

47.1 N Lyon to Root, Quick on leg stump, worked off the back foot to mid-wicket. 149/2

46.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a length around off, Cook hangs back and blocks it stoutly. 149/2

46.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, FOUR! Poor delivery and duly punished! Short and a lot of room on offer, Cook pounces on it and slaps it behind point for a rocketing boundary. 149/2

46.4 J Hazlewood to Root, Root drives the fullish delivery towards short extra cover where the fielder dives to his right but fails to stop it. Warner from mid off attacks the ball, scores a direct hit at the striker’s end but Cook is easily in. 145/2

46.3 J Hazlewood to Root, Hazlewood goes full again and hurls it outside off. Root leans ahead and pats it to covers. 144/2

46.2 J Hazlewood to Root, On a back of a length outside off, Joe sits deep in the crease and steers it to point. 144/2

46.1 J Hazlewood to Root, Hazlewood steams in and angles in a full length ball. Root shows good footwork and keeps it out to mid on. 144/2

45.6 N Lyon to Root, Makes good use of the depth of the crease and works it through mid-wicket for a run. 144/2

45.5 N Lyon to Cook, Full ball on middle, Alastair clips it to deepish mid on for a quick single. 143/2

45.4 N Lyon to Cook, Loopy ball well outside off, Cook lunges forward in defense. 142/2

45.3 N Lyon to Cook, Sliding in with the arm, played defensively to short leg. 142/2

45.2 N Lyon to Cook, Floated outside off, a confident forward push to mid off. 142/2

45.1 N Lyon to Cook, Short delivery, Cook punches it straight to the fielder at point. He missed out there, a boundary was there for the taking. 142/2

44.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Fullish delivery, driven sweetly to mid off. 142/2

44.5 J Hazlewood to Root, A chirpy appeal from Hazlewood has been turned down! Short delivery, swinging down the leg side. Root attempts a pull but misses it as the ball flies towards Paine. The keeper dives to his left to take it nicely. Josh goes up in an appeal but the keeper stays put. The Snicko shows that there was clear daylight between bat and ball. 142/2

44.4 J Hazlewood to Joe Root, Once again prodigious reverse swing on offer. Joe does well to keep it out to wide mid on. If he misses one, he will be a sitting duck to that. 142/2

44.3 J Hazlewood to Root, Fuller in length, jammed out to covers. 142/2

44.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Ooh… the ball reversing for Hazlewood! A tricky period for the Englishmen. Coming in substantially on a fuller length, Root brings his bat down in time and manages to tuck it through square leg for a couple. 142/2

44.1 J Hazlewood to Root, Fuller in length outside off, Root comes ahead and plays it with soft hands to point. 140/2

43.6 N Lyon to Cook, Sharp reflexes! Tucks this one towards short leg where Bancroft makes a good stop. 140/2

43.5 N Lyon to Root, Nicely done. Opens the bat face to the fullish delivery and taps it to cover-point for an easy run. 140/2

43.4 N Lyon to Root, Well bowled! On a flatter trajectory, Root reads it late but does well to block it. 139/2

43.3 N Lyon to Root, Floated in line of the stumps, clipped to mid on. 139/2

43.2 N Lyon to Root, Flat and quick on off, patted back to the bowler. 139/2

43.1 N Lyon to Root, Tosses this one nicely around off, Root leans forward and defends it confidently. 139/2

A leg slip, slip and short leg in place…

42.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Full length ball on off, Alastair lunges forward in defense. 139/2

42.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, Ooh.. Almost took the edge! Lovely bowling from Hazlewood. He hurls it in the channel outside off on a length and gets it to seam away ever so slightly. Cook fishes at it with minimal footwork and is foxed completely. The ex-skipper has had his issues outside the off stump. Hazlewood needs to keep targeting those areas. 139/2

42.4 J Hazlewood to Cook, Hazlewood comes from round the wicket to Cook and bowls a back of a length ball, defended solidly from within the crease. 139/2

42.3 J Hazlewood to Root, Poor delivery. Short and down the leg side, pulled to fine leg for a run. 139/2

42.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Very full well outside off, left alone. 138/2

42.1 J Hazlewood to Root, FOUR! Streaky runs! Back of a length ball outside off, stays a bit low. Root goes for a punch but gets an outside edge. The ball lands well short of the diving Smith at first slip and beats him to race to the fence. No matter where you are standing, the edges don’t seem to carry at the MCG. 138/2

41.6 N Lyon to Root, Good game awareness from Root! Drives it to mid on and calls for the run straightaway. Takes on Hazlewood and reaches the danger end safely. 134/2

41.5 N Lyon to Cook, Straying on the pads, clipped through backward square leg for a single. 133/2

41.4 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker delivery around off, kept out watchfully. 132/2

41.3 N Lyon to Cook, Slow through the air, Cook eases it to mid on. 132/2

41.2 N Lyon to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 132/2

41.1 N Lyon to Cook, Nervy moment! Sliding in with the arm, Cook closes the face of his bat early and hence, gets a leading edge to covers. If he missed that, he would have been a candidate for an LBW. 132/2

There is a bit of wear and tear on the ball. Umpire Dharmasena trims the leather off which was coming out. We are good to go again.

40.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Good fielding! Short and room on offer, stays a bit low. Root goes for a cut but gets a bottom edge. Smith at first slip dives to his left to stop it on the bounce. Saves a certain boundary. Hazlewood gives the English skipper a stare. 132/2

40.5 J Hazlewood to Root, Outside off, pushed off the front foot to cover. 132/2

40.4 J Hazlewood to Root, The batsman has driven it through mid on. 132/2

40.3 J Hazlewood to Joe Root, Overpitched outside off, Root drives it crisply to mid off with a high elbow. That was good to watch. 132/2

40.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Similar length ball, Joe shuffles and dead bats it. 132/2

40.1 J Hazlewood to Root, Fullish delivery on off, Root defends it stoutly. 132/2

Another double change. Josh Hazlewood returns for a bowl.

39.6 N Lyon to A Cook, A bit risky! Sliding in with the arm, Cook goes for the cut, almost takes it from the off stump and chops it to point. 132/2

39.5 N Lyon to Cook, Going down the leg side, Cook misses his flick. Good take by Paine as he whips the bails off but Alastair is in the crease. 132/2

39.4 N Lyon to Cook, Short delivery, punched hard but fails to pierce the gap at point. 132/2

39.3 N Lyon to Cook, Sharp work from Mitchell Marsh! Full delivery, Cook drives it towards short cover where Marsh dives and throws it in one motion back to the keeper. Cook does well to get back in. 132/2

39.2 N Lyon to Cook, FOUR! Shot! Short and spinning away, Cook rocks back and slaps it through covers to find the fence. That brings up the 50-run stand between the duo. Sensible cricket from them. 132/2

39.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floated outside off, Cook lunges forward in defense. 128/2

Nathan Lyon is back on. Can he get a breakthrough?

38.6 J Bird to Cook, Full length ball on middle, driven past the diving short mid-wicket fielder towards mid on. A brisk run taken. 128/2

Ian Chappell analyzes the dropped chance of Alastair Cook. He reckons that the keeper standing up to the stumps made it difficult for Smith to spot the ball and hence, he was late to react. If the keeper was standing in his usual position, it would have an easier opportunity.

38.5 J Bird to Cook, Back of a length ball, shaping in. Cook plays it with an open bat face to point. 127/2

38.4 J Bird to Cook, Full ball outside off, driven off the front foot towards covers. 127/2

38.3 J Bird to Cook, The batsman has flicked the ball off his pads. 127/2

38.2 J Bird to Cook, Back of a length delivery, Cook hangs back and defends it solidly. 127/2

38.1 J Bird to Cook, Angling in on a length from around off, tucked off the hips to square leg. 127/2

Drinks are on the field.

37.6 M Marsh to Root, Four Byes! Tough for Paine as he was up to the stumps! Marsh sprays it down the leg side, Root tries to help it on its way but fails to do so. The keeper behind the stumps could do nothing about it as the ball races down the fine leg fence for a boundary. The stand moves to 47 with that. 127/2

37.5 M Marsh to Cook, Shortish in length and outside off, punched past cover for a single. 123/2

Shane Warne tells us his way of watching cricket. He starts by saying that, he just loved the way the English pacers attacked the stumps, rather than playing the waiting game of bowling it outside off and sit back for a wicket to fall. Anderson and Broad bowled as much as they could on the stumps and reaped the dividends for the same. Wants to see more of the same from the Aussie quicks…

37.4 M Marsh to A Cook, Almost a wicket for Marsh! He gets one to nip back in, Cook is a tad late to bring his bat down but manages to get an inside edge on the pads. 122/2

37.3 M Marsh to Cook, Good length on middle and off, worked with soft hands towards the on side. 122/2

37.2 M Marsh to Root, Back of a length on middle and leg, tucked with the angle towards mid-wicket for a single. 122/2

37.1 M Marsh to Root, Length delivery outside off, defended off the back foot towards cover. 121/2

36.6 J Bird to Root, The batsman flicks it away with a wristy shot. The batsmen have run through for a single. 121/2

Pat Cummins is once again off the field. He is seen sitting near the boundary line under an umbrella…

36.5 J Bird to Root, Drops it on a length outside off, patted towards point. 120/2

36.4 J Bird to Root, Good length delivery outside off, punched off the back foot as the ball rolls towards mid on. 120/2

36.3 J Bird to Root, Pitches it up on off, Root drives it towards the cover region. 120/2

36.2 J Bird to Root, Gets behind the line and offers a full face of the bat. 120/2

36.1 J Bird to Root, On a length and outside off, Joe Root, with a straight bat hits it towards mid off. 120/2

35.6 M Marsh to Cook, Ample of width outside off, Alastair looks to cut, he does but finds the man at backward point. 120/2

35.5 M Marsh to Cook, Good length delivery on middle, wristed towards short mid-wicket. 120/2

35.4 M Marsh to Root, Marsh is spraying a bit too much on the pads in search of an LBW! Joe glances it down towards deep backward square. Cameron Bancroft in the deep puts in a good dive to keep them down to one. 120/2

35.3 M Marsh to Root, Again it’s sprayed on the pads, this time Root flicks it behind square on the leg side for a couple. 119/2

35.2 M Marsh to Root, Sprays it on the pads, Root knows that he has missed out on that one. Clips it only to find the man at square leg. 117/2

35.1 M Marsh to Root, Good length delivery on middle and leg, tucked off the hips towards mid-wicket. 117/2

34.6 J Bird to Cook, Another huge cry for an LBW! Maybe, slipping down leg! Fuller and tailing back in, Cook falls over on his attempted flick shot and misses to get rapped on the pads. They appeal but the umpire turns it down. Yes, it’s going down leg! 117/2

34.5 J Bird to Cook, The batsman defends it from within the crease. 117/2

34.4 J Bird to Cook, Comes forward and drives it towards mid off. 117/2

34.3 J Bird to Root, Fuller and tailing back in from around off, Joe Root gets across and flicks it through mid-wicket. Won’t get a boundary but will get three. 117/2

34.2 J Bird to Root, FOUR! Deft! Short and outside off, Root once again sits back, uses the pace of the bowler and delicately gets it between the slip cordon and gully for a boundary. 114/2

34.1 J Bird to Root, Fuller ball and angling in, driven back towards Bird. 110/2

33.6 M Marsh to Cook, Punched off the back foot by the batsman. 110/2

33.5 M Marsh to Cook, Edged and dropped!!! Steven Smith is the man who has dropped Cook! Wasn’t an easy take by any means but with the standards that he has set for himself, I reckon that should have been taken. Now, before this delivery, Tim Paine came up to the stumps and I am not sure if that thing has created the opportunity. Fuller length delivery outside off, Cook goes hard at it. Gets a thick edge which flies towards Smith at first slip who is standing very fine. The Aussie skipper is quick to react but the ball comes really low, almost near his right ankle. He gets his hands to it, then again tries to take it on the second attempt but eventually fails to cling onto it. Tough luck for the hosts! Alastair gets a life. 110/2

The keeper is up to the stumps… Interesting ploy!

33.4 M Marsh to Cook, Fuller on off, driven towards cover for a couple of runs. 110/2

33.3 M Marsh to Cook, The batsman rocks onto the back foot and punches the ball. 108/2

33.2 M Marsh to Cook, FOUR! Slashed! Short and wide outside off, Alastair Cook stays back and flays it powerfully to beat the man at gully. A boundary results. 108/2

33.1 M Marsh to Cook, A huge shout for an LBW! Marsh drops it on a length around off and gets it to curl back in appreciably and that too with extra bounce. Cook misses his tuck and wears it on the pads. Mitchell turns back and starts to appeal but umpire S Ravi stays put. Steven Smith from slip suggests height could be an issue. Bang on, skip! Hawk Eye shows it to be missing the stumps. 104/2

32.6 J Bird to Cook, Angling in on middle and leg, worked wide of mid on for a single. 104/2

32.5 J Bird to Root, A brisk single! Fractionally short and served outside off, Root taps it in front of point and calls for a quick single. Cook is a bit late to respond but eventually makes it at the danger end. 103/2

32.4 J Bird to Root, Pitches it up again outside off, Root drives it back down the ground and again Bird tries to stop it with his leg. Deflects it towards mid off. 102/2

32.3 J Bird to Joe Root, On middle and leg, worked towards mid on. 102/2

32.2 J Bird to Root, Fuller again on off, Joe drives it sweetly but finds mid off. 102/2

32.1 J Bird to Root, Crashes the stumps but at the other end! Bird begins this spell with a slightly fuller delivery, Root leans across and drives it back down the ground. Bird in his followthrough tries to stop it with his right leg but fails to do so. The ball disturbs the stumps at his end. Jackson is lucky to get away with that one. 102/2

Double change being made as Jackson Bird comes on to bowl now.

31.6 M Marsh to Cook, On a length and just around the off stump channel, Cook presses forward and defends it towards the cover fielder. 102/2

31.5 M Marsh to Cook, Good length ball on off, patted towards cover. 102/2

31.4 M Marsh to Cook, Back of a length outside off, defended towards cover. 102/2

31.3 M Marsh to Cook, FOUR! Beautiful! Looks so beautiful when the ball hits the sweet spot! Marsh overcooks this one but Cook doesn’t miss out. Takes a stride forward and bunts it back down the track past mid off for a rocketing boundary. He held the pose as well. 102/2

31.2 M Marsh to Cook, Too straight from Marsh. Around middle and leg, clipped behind square on the leg side for a brace. 98/2

31.1 M Marsh to Cook, Marsh begins his spell with a fuller ball, angling in from around the wicket, Cook walks across and drives it towards mid on. 96/2

Okay then, some respite for Cummins. Mitchell Marsh is brought into the attack now.

30.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Fuller and nipping back in a shade, defended down safely. 96/2

30.5 J Hazlewood to Joe Root, Fullish on off, pushed off the front foot towards mid off. 96/2

30.4 J Hazlewood to Root, FOUR! Using the pace of the bowler! Root is just good at doing it. Hazlewood bowls this a bit short at 139.7 clicks, Root stays back and opens the face of the bat at the very last moment. Seemed like it went off the edge but he intended to play there. Goes right between the slip cordon and the man at gully for a boundary. 96/2

30.3 J Hazlewood to Root, The batsman shows the full face of the bat and defends the ball off the back foot. 92/2

30.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Fuller outside off, Root drives it neatly but couldn’t get it past the man at point. 92/2

30.1 J Hazlewood to Root, Angling in from around middle and leg, worked towards mid-wicket. 92/2

29.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Pushes it off the front foot towards cover. 92/2

29.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, FOUR! There it is! 56th Test fifty for the English ex-skipper! How badly he needed this? A fifty after 11 innings, this will calm him down. Well played, Cooky! Now convert this into a big one. Cummins after keeping it outside off, cleverly attacks the stumps. Fires it full on middle and leg but Cook is up for it. He leans across and whips it through mid-wicket. No one in the deep and he picks up a boundary. The Barmy Army loves it as well. 92/2

29.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Another solid defense! Fuller in length on off, Alastair once again comes forward and defends. 88/2

29.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Fuller in length and angling in from around off, Cook blocks it out towards cover. 88/2

29.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Cummins hurls it on a length outside off, AC defends it down gently. 88/2

Catching mid-wicket in place…

29.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Cook leans forward and is compact in defense. Rock solid is what you call it. 88/2

28.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Was he expecting this? Josh drops it short but without much venom behind it. Root is onto it in a flash as he swivels inside the crease and pulls it in front of square on the leg side. Calls for two and gets it easily. 88/2

28.5 J Hazlewood to Root, Good bowling from Hazlewood! Perfect line. He keeps it fuller, tries to angle it in. Root crouches to keep it at bay. 86/2

28.4 J Hazlewood to Root, Length delivery outside off, JR goes back and defends. 86/2

28.3 J Hazlewood to Root, This one nips back in from a fuller length outside off, Root hangs back and keeps it out. 86/2

28.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Pitches it up, right up there does Hazlewood. Joe plants his front foot across and keeps the bat face open to hit it straight towards Lyon at point. 86/2

28.1 J Hazlewood to Root, That crowd goes Rooooooot! Any guesses why? Because the English skipper gets off the mark with a front foot drive through covers. A couple taken. 86/2

27.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Stays back to a harmless ball outside off and stabs it towards cover. 84/2

27.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Was he early into the on drive? Seemed like! Fuller ball, angling in, Cook looks to clip it away but it seems like he was early into the shot. The ball goes uppishly towards mid on. 84/2

27.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Finds the gap this time does Cook! Cummins brings one back from around off, clipped past mid-wicket to collect a brace. Moves to 49 with that! 84/2

27.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Can’t get it past him again! Stays back and works it towards Marsh at mid-wicket for nothing. This is good from Australia. After Vince’s wicket, they have dried up the runs. 82/2

27.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Ahead of a length, angling in, AC hops back and tucks it towards mid-wicket where Shaun Marsh dives to his right to collect it on the bounce. 82/2

27.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Back of a length delivery on middle and off, driven back down the ground towards mid on. 82/2

26.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Josh is persisting with the line outside the off stump, Root is in no hurry to go after it. He calmly defends it down. 82/2

26.5 J Hazlewood to Root, The batsman has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 82/2

26.4 J Hazlewood to Root, On a length and outside off, testing line from Hazlewood. Joe doesn’t play at it. 82/2

26.3 J Hazlewood to Root, Keeps it in the channel on off, nipping back in a touch, Root is behind the line to keep it out. 82/2

26.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Slightly short and outside off, not much room on offer. Alastair still goes after it but ends up chopping it towards Lyon at point for a single. 82/2

26.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Back of a length delivery, angling across Cook who punches it off the back foot towards cover. 81/2

25.6 Pat Cummins to Root, Good length on off, now this one didn’t rise much. Kept out comfortably towards mid off. 81/2

25.5 Pat Cummins to Root, Leading edgeeee! Cummins keeps it full on middle and leg, it moves away a bit. Root looks to clip it away on the leg side but gets a soft leading edge as the ball rolls towards mid off. 81/2

25.4 Pat Cummins to Root, Fuller and attacking the stumps, Root prods forward and drives it back to Cummins who sticks his left hand out in his followthrough to parry it towards mid off. 81/2

25.3 Pat Cummins to Root, Fuller in length and angling in from over the wicket, Joe Root is rock solid in defense. 81/2

25.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length delivery on off, worked wide of mid on for an easy single. 81/2

25.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shortish in length and angling in from around off, Cook looks to come forward and push it away but the bat turns in his hands as the ball rolls towards mid on off the inner half. 80/2

24.6 J Hazlewood to Root, Goes full outside off this time, Root makes an assured leave. A productive over for Hazlewood. 80/2

24.5 J Hazlewood to Root, Short of a length outside off, patted to covers. 80/2

24.4 J Hazlewood to Root, The batsman chooses to leave the ball outside his off stump. 80/2

24.3 J Hazlewood to Root, Back of a length ball, defended solidly off the back foot. 80/2

24.2 J Hazlewood to Root, Fullish delivery, kept out watchfully. 80/2

Joe Root is in next.

24.1 Hazlewood to Vince, OUT! Got him! Hazlewood is absolutely pumped up. Just the start the hosts wanted after the break. He steams in and bowls a fullish ball around off, reversing in appreciably. Vince is caught in a tangle as he tries to drive it down the ground but seems to have missed it to get pinged on the pads. The Aussies appeal in unison and the umpire raises the dreaded finger. James walks across to his partner, has a chat with him but doesn’t challenge the decision. There were two noises on that says Michael Clarke on air. The replays roll in. Yes, the two sounds were of the ball hitting the front pad and then deflecting to the back pad. Oh ho! Hang on. The Hot Spot shows a slight mark. Well, the Snicko confirms that there was certainly a thin edge. Not sure why the right-hander did not pick it up. Australia have the last laugh. Will this wicket make a big difference in the game? 80/2

Josh Hazlewood to bowl from the other end. Some movement behind the bowler’s arm and hence, Vince backs off.

23.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, FOUR! All about timing and grace! Back of a length outside off, Cook hangs back and punches it through covers to find the fence. 80/1

23.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Short of a length ball outside off, punched off the back foot to point. 76/1

Pat Cummins is struggling. He is taking a lot of time to go back to his mark.

23.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, In the zone of apprehension, Cook doesn’t fiddle with it. 76/1

23.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Fullish delivery, blocked to covers. 76/1

23.2 Pat Cummins to A Cook, FOUR! Hit with authority! Cook is flowing at the moment. Short ball on off, the southpaw stands tall and pulls it with aplomb over mid-wicket for a boundary. This is now the highest score for Cook in the series. 76/1

23.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good length ball on off, Cook hangs back and answers it with a straight bat. 72/1

We are back for the evening session. 35 overs are still left in the day. Alastair Cook and James Vince to continue their innings. Good news for Australia. Pat Cummins has returned for a bowl. Here we go…

… Day 2, Session 3 …

Stoneman was the only wicket to fall but since his departure, Vince has chipped in and has looked solid too. Australia, on the other hand, have their task cut out. Their prime bowler, Pat Cummins seems to be struggling with an upset stomach and Jackson Bird towards the end looked in some discomfort too. Nathan Lyon has been superb. He is getting the extra bounce and has also got a wicket to his name. The hosts would want their pacers to get back into their rhythm quickly or else they might find themselves in trouble. Will England dominate another session or will it be the other way round? Join us shortly for the final session of the day.

Another session pocketed by England! This is good cricket from them, probably their best in the series. Firstly, they wasted no time in cleaning up the tail after lunch which saw them bowling the Aussies out for 327. All eyes were on their batsmen who have been out of shape so far but this time they came out with intent. Alastair Cook is the one leading the way and his side will be happy that he has got a good start. Can he make it count? Remains to be seen.

22.6 J Bird to Vince, Back of a length, in the channel again, James Vince hangs back and looks to dab it away. Once again gets it off the edge past Shaun Marsh at backward point who gives it a chase and does well to save a couple for his side. TEA ON DAY 2! 72/1

22.5 J Bird to Vince, Bird keeps it in the same channel, wanting Vince to go again but this time Vince resists. Leaves it alone. 70/1

22.4 J Bird to Vince, Stands tall and punches it towards mid off. 70/1

22.3 J Bird to Vince, FOUR! In the air… safe again! It’s on a length and once again in the corridor outside off, Vince needs to just keep it out as this is the last over before tea. But for some reason he thinks this as an opportunity to score. Goes fishing after it with a drive but gets a thick outside edge which flies past the man at backward point for a boundary. Cook immediately comes up to him to have a word. 70/1

22.2 J Bird to Vince, On a length and served on off, a solid defense again on offer by James. 66/1

22.1 J Bird to Vince, Good length delivery, just outside off, Vince stays back and defends it down. 66/1

Last over before tea…

21.6 N Lyon to Cook, Short delivery, cut away with the spin to point. 66/1

21.5 N Lyon to Cook, Clipped with the angle to short leg. 66/1

21.4 N Lyon to Cook, Tossed up delivery, defended solidly off the front foot. 66/1

21.3 N Lyon to Cook, The batsman has flicked the ball off his pads. 66/1

21.2 N Lyon to Cook, Fraction short this time, pushed off the back foot to the leg side. 66/1

21.1 N Lyon to Cook, Coming in with the arm, Cook goes for a firm drive but gets it off the inner half of the bat down the track. 66/1

20.6 J Bird to Vince, On a length outside off, left alone. 66/1

20.5 J Bird to Cook, A bit of width on offer, steered past point for a run. 66/1

20.4 J Bird to Cook, Another terrific piece of fielding! Back of a length outside off, Cook steers it towards gully where Khawaja dives to his right to stop a certain boundary. 65/1

20.3 J Bird to Vince, Back of a length ball on leg stump, tucked around the corner for a single. 65/1

20.2 J Bird to Vince, Nicely bowled! On a length around off, swinging in. Vince covers the line and does well to block it. 64/1

20.1 J Bird to Vince, Good length delivery, pushed off the outer half of the bat to the gully region. 64/1

19.6 N Lyon to Cook, Get the fielders close-in, Smith! Lyon is getting the extra bounce. Twice in the over this has happened. Cook lunges to defend but due to the extra bounce, the ball hits the splice of the bat and lobs but dies down again. 64/1

19.5 N Lyon to Cook, Flighted delivery around off, Cook dead bats it. 64/1

19.4 N Lyon to Cook, Drops it short outside off, Cook punches it towards cover where Shaun Marsh makes a good stop. 64/1

19.3 N Lyon to Cook, The batsman has punched the ball off the back foot. 64/1

19.2 N Lyon to Cook, Quicker one around middle and leg, worked through backward square leg for a couple. 64/1

19.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floats it up around middle and off, Cook comes forward to defend but is surprised with the extra bounce. The ball hits the splice of the bat and dies down almost instantly. 62/1

18.6 Bird to Vince, A huge, huge appeal for a caught behind! Not given by the umpire. Steven Smith looks interested and walks down to his bowler. Confers with his teammates and then decides not to challenge it. Bird sprays it around leg, Vince moves inside the line to clip it away as the ball goes off something towards Paine who dives full length to his left to take it. The Aussies appeal but the umpire stays put. Replays show it came off the hips. Good call from S Ravi. 62/1

18.5 J Bird to Vince, Punched off the back foot by the batsman. 62/1

18.4 J Bird to Vince, Fuller in length, gets it to curl back in from around off. James comes forward to defend but gets a thick inside edge on the pads as the ball rolls back to the bowler. 62/1

18.4 J Bird to Vince, And again he oversteps! He has a look near the landing area before walking back. On a back of a length on middle, punched off the back foot towards the leg side by Vince. 62/1

18.4 J Bird to Vince, Back of a length delivery on middle, tucked towards mid-wicket. The umpire stretches his right hand to call it a no ball as Jackson oversteps. 61/1

18.3 J Bird to Vince, An appeal for an LBW! Angles it in from around middle, Vince shuffles across to flick but misses to get pinged on the pads. A stifled appeal by Bird but nothing from the umpire. Going down leg! 60/1

18.2 J Bird to Cook, Excellent work in the deep by Lyon! Back of a length delivery, angling away outside off. Cook rocks back and with amazing timing he punches it past cover. It seemed like it would run away but Lyon from deep point covers good ground to save a run for his side. The fielding from the hosts has been spot on till now. 60/1

18.1 J Bird to Cook, Outside off, Cook doesn’t go after it. 57/1

17.6 N Lyon to Vince, Loops it up outside off, a front foot push back to Lyon. 57/1

17.5 N Lyon to Vince, This one turns back in sharply, Vince sits back to cut and nearly chops it on besides the pitch. 57/1

17.4 N Lyon to Vince, Tad shorter and turning back in from the rough, James tucks it towards short leg. 57/1

17.3 N Lyon to J Vince, FOUR! Vince and his drives! Have mentioned it before as well. Simply textbook stuff! Lyon tosses it up outside off, asking Vince to go after it. He obliges and times his drive elegantly through extra cover. The man there did dive but the ball beats him to reach the fence. 57/1

17.2 N Lyon to Vince, The batsman has played that off the front foot and into the ground. 53/1

17.1 N Lyon to Vince, Drops it short outside off, turning in a bit, clipped with the turn towards square leg. 53/1

Good signs for Australia as Pat Cummins is back on the field. However, he is walking across gingerly. We have been informed that he has an upset stomach. Cummins has been terrific in the series so far and the hosts need his services.

16.6 J Bird to Cook, Fuller again on off, Alastair drives it nicely back to the bowler who gets a hand to it. 53/1

16.5 J Bird to Cook, Shorter in length and outside off, punched straight to cover. 53/1

16.4 J Bird to Cook, FOUR! Cracks it away! Short and outside off, a bit of width on offer. Enough for Cook to make the most of it as he rocks back and slaps it wide of the man at gully to pick up a boundary towards third man. He has got off to a good start. Needs to make a big one. 53/1

16.3 J Bird to Cook, Fuller and angling in on the stumps, AC crouches a bit and strokes it down the ground only for the man from mid on to cut it off. 49/1

16.2 J Bird to Cook, Drops it on a back of a length on middle and off, Cook hangs back in defense. 49/1

16.1 J Bird to Cook, Fuller and around off, Cook leans and drives it straight to the cover fielder. 49/1

15.6 N Lyon to Vince, Loopy delivery outside off, blocked into the ground. 49/1

15.5 N Lyon to J Vince, On middle and off, bunted towards mid on. 49/1

15.4 N Lyon to Vince, In the air… safe! Lyon sees Vince dancing down the track so he drags his length back and slows it through the air. Vince who is already down the track goes with the turn but mistimes it high in the air. Luckily for him, it clears the man at mid on. For a couple. 49/1

Smith pushes the man now at the boundary. Warne on air is excited for this battle. Will Lyon continue to toss the ball outside off? Will Vince continue to take him on? Let’s wait and watch…

15.3 N Lyon to Vince, James has defended it by getting right behind the line of the delivery. 47/1

15.2 N Lyon to Cook, Nudges it past mid-wicket to get to the other end. 47/1

15.1 N Lyon to Cook, Loopy ball outside off, Cook strides forward and pushes it towards cover. 46/1

14.6 J Bird to Vince, Back of a length outside off, defended off the back foot comfortably. 46/1

14.5 J Bird to Vince, That ball has struck the batsman on the thigh pad. 46/1

14.4 J Bird to Cook, Back of length outside off, placed behind point for a single. 46/1

14.3 J Bird to Cook, FOUR! Ahhhh, gets one now! This is even better! The previous one was off the pads but this is a classical punch down the ground! It’s a length delivery on middle and off, Alastair stays back and unfurls a lovely punch past the bowler. Warner at mid off had no chance to cut that off. Another milestone for Cook – He becomes the first Englishman to score 15K international runs, veteran for a reason! 45/1

14.2 J Bird to Cook, Bancroft, you have saved a certain boundary! Amazing fielding from the Aussie opener! Fuller ball on the pads, Cook leans forward and times his flick shot. It was destined to go for a boundary but Cameron at mid-wicket puts in a dive to his left to stop it. 41/1

14.1 J Bird to A Cook, Fuller and angling in from around the wicket, Cook gets forward and across to clip it towards mid on. 41/1

As Cummins is not on the field, Jackson Bird is called back into the attack.

13.6 N Lyon to Vince, Flighted delivery outside off, Vince reaches out to that one and pushes it towards point. 41/1

13.5 N Lyon to Vince, Flatter on leg, tapped off the back foot towards the leg side. 41/1

13.4 N Lyon to Vince, FOUR! Glorious from Vince! He is off the mark as well! He is a good driver of the ball and it’s a treat to watch him play. Lyon tosses it up wider outside off, Vince leans into it and laces it through extra cover for a boundary. No need to run for those! 41/1

13.3 N Lyon to Cook, Flatter and skidding off the deck, Cook waits back and cuts it really late towards point for a single. 37/1

13.2 N Lyon to Cook, The batsman rocks onto the back foot and punches the ball. 36/1

Pat Cummins has gone off the field. He was seen limping and Australia would hope that it is nothing serious.

13.1 N Lyon to Cook, Floated delivery around middle and off, stays back in defense does Cook. 36/1

12.6 Pat Cummins to Vince, Bowls it on a back of a length on middle, tucked towards mid-wicket. 36/1

12.5 Pat Cummins to Vince, Good length delivery, angling in from around off, Vince opens the face of the bat and dabs it towards point. 36/1

12.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Slower ball from Cummins, at 118.8 kph. Cook checks his drive as he gets it wide of the man at cover. A single taken. 36/1

12.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, Stays back to this back of a length delivery and pushes it towards mid off. 35/1

12.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Fuller ball, angling in, Cook defends it off the front foot towards cover. 35/1

12.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Shortish in length and outside off, punched off the back foot towards cover. 35/1

11.6 N Lyon to Vince, Darts it on the stumps, James Vince meets it with a straight bat. Excellent over from Nathan Lyon. 35/1

11.5 N Lyon to Vince, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 35/1

11.4 N Lyon to Vince, Tossed up on off, bunted back to Lyon. 35/1

James Vince is the next man in.

11.3 Lyon to Stoneman, OUT! What-a-catch! Nathan Lyon, you beauty! This is a stunning return catch and Shane Warne on air goes – NICE GARRY! He draws first blood and has the crowd right behind him. Nicely floats it up around off, gives it a lot of revs. Stoneman advances down the track to go after it but ends up getting a leading edge to the right of Lyon. Seemed like the ball would go past him, but… No. Lyon shows outstanding reflexes as he leaps just a bit and stretches out his right hand to take a one-handed stunner. Made it look so easy I tell you but it wasn’t by any means. I remember, he took a superman-like catch earlier in the series to dismiss Moeen Ali. Is he making it a habit or what? Anyway, England lose their first. 35/1

11.2 N Lyon to Stoneman, Flatter on the stumps, Stoneman blocks it out. 35/0

11.1 N Lyon to Stoneman, Floated delivery outside off, Stoneman leans forward and dabs it towards point. 35/0

10.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Angling in from outside off, blocked off the front foot by Cook. 35/0

10.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, Stands tall to this back of a length delivery and answers it with a straight bat. 35/0

10.4 Pat Cummins to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 35/0

10.3 Pat Cummins to Cook, FOUR! Superb from Cook! Splits the gap to perfection! Cummins overpitches it again, Cook leans forward and smashes it off the meat. Brilliant timing as the ball pierces the gap through cover to the fence. 35/0

Pat Cummins is not looking hundred percent. He bowls a lot quicker, at around 140-plus clicks but today he is bowling in the mid 130s and that is something which is going against him…

10.2 Pat Cummins to Cook, Tossed up outside off, defended into the ground. 31/0

10.1 Pat Cummins to Cook, Good shot! A nice stride forward from Cook, something he has been lacking in this series. He is moving around in the crease quite well. But what an effort from Warner too to chase this down. Cummins pitches it up very full, Alastair leans forward and drives it straight down the ground. Seemed like a boundary but Warner from mid off gives a long chase and does well to keep the ball in play to save a couple. 31/0

9.6 N Lyon to M Stoneman, Flatter and shorter outside off, Stoneman goes back and cuts it hard but couldn’t get it past backward point. 29/0

9.5 N Lyon to Cook, Floats it up on the stumps, Cook wrists it towards mid on for a single. 29/0

9.4 N Lyon to Cook, Defended off the front foot by the batsman presenting the full face of the bat. 28/0

9.3 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting in from around middle, worked with soft hands towards mid-wicket. 28/0

9.2 N Lyon to Cook, Loopy delivery around middle and leg, the batsman presses forward in defense. 28/0

9.1 N Lyon to Stoneman, Slower through the air and dropped short outside off, punched off the back foot through cover for a single. 28/0

8.6 Pat Cummins to Cook, Angles it in from around off, Alastair blocks it back down on the pitch. 27/0

8.5 Pat Cummins to Cook, The batsman shoulders arms to let that one through. 27/0

8.4 Pat Cummins to Stoneman, Hits the length and it’s served around off, Stoneman squirts it off the outer half behind point for a single. Squared up Stoneman a touch there. 27/0

8.3 Pat Cummins to Stoneman, Slightly wider outside off, Mark leans forward and pushes it towards cover. 26/0

8.2 Pat Cummins to Stoneman, Attacks the stumps does Cummins, pushed back to the bowler. 26/0

8.1 Pat Cummins to Stoneman, Starts off with a length delivery outside off, Stoneman stays back and defends it down safely. 26/0

Pat Cummins to bowl now.

7.6 N Lyon to Stoneman, Full delivery, driven crisply to mid off for a brisk single. 26/0

7.5 N Lyon to Stoneman, Well bowled! Tossed up around off, Stoneman is late to react as he prods forward to defend but gets it off the inner half of the bat towards short leg. 25/0

7.4 N Lyon to Stoneman, The batsman has played that off the front foot and into the ground. 25/0

7.3 N Lyon to Cook, Full ball on middle, worked past the short leg fielder for a single. 25/0

7.2 N Lyon to Cook, Drifting in towards Cook who keeps it out towards short mid-wicket. 24/0

7.1 N Lyon to Stoneman, Turns it through mid-wicket for an easy run. 24/0

Time for spin. Nathan Lyon to roll his arm over now. A slip and a short leg in place.

6.6 J Hazlewood to A Cook, FOUR! Brilliant! Short delivery, sits up nicely for Cook. He nails the pull and dismisses the ball from its presence. The ball rockets through square leg to reach the fence. 23/0

6.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, Take a bow, Lyon! Short and room on offer, Cook cuts it towards point where Lyon dives to his right like a goalkeeper to save a certain boundary. 19/0

6.4 J Hazlewood to A Cook, Pitched right up there, eased off the front foot to mid off. 19/0

6.3 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Punched off the back foot by the batsman. One run added to the total. 19/0

6.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, A bit of hesitancy but well run in the end. Full and outside off, Cook plays it with soft hands to covers. Is a bit nervous to whether go for the single or not. Goes for it eventually and completes it. 18/0

6.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Fractionally overpitched outside off, Cook leans ahead and defends it solidly. 17/0

5.6 J Bird to Stoneman, Full length ball, eased to mid on. 17/0

5.5 J Bird to Stoneman, Length delivery on middle and leg, swinging down. Stoneman tries to play it across but misses to get hit on the pads. 17/0

Ian Healy makes a good point on air. He wants Hazlewood to bowl from over the wicket to Stoneman. In the previous Test in Perth, his feet were going nowhere and he was dismissed from the same angle A ball which slants across a left-hander is difficult to deal with. The round the wicket ploy is a bit defensive.

5.4 J Bird to Stoneman, Shortish delivery on leg stump, Stoneman goes for a pull but is hit on the thigh pad. 17/0

5.3 J Bird to Stoneman, Back of a length ball, played off the back foot to mid off. 17/0

5.2 J Bird to Stoneman, Fullish delivery, pushed off the front foot to mid off. 17/0

5.1 J Bird to Stoneman, Full length ball, swinging in. Stoneman puts his head down and pushes it nicely to mid on. 17/0

4.6 J Hazlewood to M Stoneman, Shortish ball on middle, Mark pulls it through square leg for a run. 17/0

4.5 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Good shot for no runs! Overpitched outside off, Stoneman leans ahead and square drives it to the fielder at point. 16/0

4.4 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, In the channel outside off, left alone. 16/0

4.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, In the air… but safe! Short ball on off, Cook attempts the big pull but miscues it towards square leg. The fielder backtracks but the ball falls down safely. A run taken. 16/0

4.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, On a length, angling in. Cook hangs back and blocks it solidly. 15/0

4.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good reflexes from Hazlewood! Full ball on middle, Cook drives it hard towards the bowler who makes a fine stop in his followthrough. 15/0

3.6 J Bird to M Stoneman, Pitched up around off, Mark comes forward and strokes it to the cover region. 15/0

3.5 J Bird to Stoneman, Back of a length outside off, pushed off the back foot to covers. 15/0

3.4 J Bird to Stoneman, Full length ball, pushed back to the bowler. 15/0

3.3 J Bird to Stoneman, Sharp short ball on middle and leg, Stoneman sits under it in a flash. 15/0

3.2 J Bird to Stoneman, Another one down the leg side, Stoneman is once again late and misses out. 15/0

3.2 J Bird to Stoneman, Slips this one down the leg side, Stoneman misses his glance. Well, Bird overstepped here so will have to deliver again. 15/0

3.1 J Bird to Stoneman, FOUR! A cracker of a stroke! Stoneman is looking very confident in the middle. Leans ahead to a full delivery and drives it elegantly through covers to pick up a boundary. 14/0

2.6 J Hazlewood to Cook, Good length ball outside off, holding its line. Cook points his bat skywards to allow it through. 10/0

A catching short mid-wicket in place.

2.5 J Hazlewood to Cook, FOUR! Well played! Length delivery in line of the stumps, Cook shuffles a bit and clips it nicely through backward square leg to find the fence. His first of the innings. 10/0

2.4 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Well played! Half volley outside off, Stoneman leans into it and strokes it through covers. Gets three runs to his name. 6/0

A man has been placed at deepish square leg for a mistimed hook shot. Meanwhile, Stoneman pulls out really late on that delivery. There was a butterfly which distracted him. He apologizes to Hazlewood.

2.3 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Hazlewood is charging in. Attacks the stumps with a full delivery, Stoneman is late in bringing his bat down and somehow keeps it out. 3/0

2.2 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Clips the fullish ball nicely through mid-wicket to collect a brace. 3/0

2.1 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Beaten for pace! Good length ball on leg stump, Stoneman tries to tuck it away but is hit on the thigh pad. 1/0

1.6 J Bird to Cook, Driven through mid off by the batsman. 1/0

1.5 J Bird to Cook, Brilliant fielding! Fullish ball on middle, Cook drives it towards mid on where the fielder moves to his right and dives full length to save a boundary. 1/0

1.4 J Bird to Cook, Fullish on off, Cook comes forward and offers a compact defense. 1/0

1.3 J Bird to Cook, Almost chops it on! The uncertain bounce on the MCG track getting the better of Cook. Shortish on off, stays a bit low. Cook tries to pull but gets in an uncomfortable position. Ends up getting an inside edge that rolls besides the stumps on the leg side. 1/0

1.2 J Bird to Cook, Full ball this time, angling away. Cook makes an assured leave. 1/0

1.1 J Bird to Cook, Oohs and Aahs from the Australians. On a length on middle and leg, Cook shuffles and tries to work it across but gets hit high on the pads. No real appeal from the hosts. 1/0

Jackson Bird to bowl from the other end. He has been terrific in domestic cricket. Can he continue the good work at the highest level?

0.6 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Good length ball outside off, left alone. A testing first over from Hazlewood. 1/0

0.5 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, That’s a brute of a delivery. On a good length on off, moving away sharply. Stoneman pokes at it and is beaten all ends up. He was dismissed to a similar ball in the second innings in Perth. Needs to be careful. 1/0

0.4 J Hazlewood to Stoneman, Shaping away from around off, Stoneman plants his front foot across and lets it go. 1/0

0.3 J Hazlewood to Cook, England are away! Tentative once again. On a fuller length on off, Cook shuffles a touch and tucks it to mid-wicket for a run. 1/0

0.2 J Hazlewood to Cook, Whoaa.. some prodigious swing on offer. Full ball on off, moving away. Cook with zero footwork tries to flick it across but gets a safe leading edge towards covers. 0/0

0.1 J Hazlewood to Cook, Starts off with a wide and full ball outside off, allows Cook a sighter and he has no trouble to leave it alone. 0/0




First Published: December 27, 2017, 11:16 PM IST


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Vadhiya Natha

Vadhiya Natha is an Event blogger and admin of Sports24.in. Mostly like to write sports article. He is enjoying sports articles and all sports event, specially Cricket is his favorite sports.
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