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From Stephan Shemilt
BBC Sport at Old Trafford
England face a battle to save the Ashes after Australia took three late wickets on the third afternoon of the fourth Test.
Josh Hazlewood removed Joe Root, Rory Burns and Jason Roy to leave the house side 200-5 297 supporting the 497-8 of Australia declared.
England were making progress After Root and Burns added 141 for the next wicket.
But Hazlewood backed a great to have Burns fencing to slip for 81 immobilized Root lbw for 71 up.
When Roy stump has been removed, England had lost three wickets for 30 runs.
Jonny Bairstow and ben Stokes were together when bad light ended play in order to avoid defeat, together with England likely needing to bat for a lot of Saturday and Sunday.
Ashes holders assured of keeping the urn and Australia will be 2-1 up with one Test to play, if they fail.
England are unlikely to have the rain that postponed play before 13:30 BST on Friday’s advantage – that the weather forecast is clear for the weekend.
Faced with such a massive Australia total, England arrived understanding any kind of batting recession in their second or first innings will send the urn back down beneath.
For such a long time, Burns and Root were defiant from Hazlewood and Cummins. While Root came from off-spinner Nathan Lyon via an examination, the ball peppered burns.
From an Old Trafford audience still needing to shiver throughout the cold they had been awarded support – following his fumble at the end of England’s thrilling third-Test triumph at Headingley, while Lyon came in for taunting each run was celebrated.
Australia had to combat the states that faced the bowlers of England for much of the initial two days – not merely the placid pitch, but also the wind.
That the batsmen were analyzed by them is to their charge, and the overdue success of Hazlewood was deserved by the tourists.
It transferred them a step closer to keeping the Ashes, in case the remainder can replicate the battling qualities of Burns and Root, but England could nevertheless take the competition to The Oval.
There were only a few indications of frustration as it seemed like their efforts would be wasted creeping into to the tourists.
During an electric 10-over spell from Cummins both sides of java, Root edged on 54 between slip David Warner and protagonist Tim Paine and, at the next over, Australia wasted an overview against precisely exactly the man using a lbw appeal.
Whereas Cummins has been luckless, his substitute Hazlewood was incisive.
First he got you to move across Burns then that the left-hander edged at slip and followed captured one to scuttle the pinned Root didn’t bother to review.
The order had moved down and was in no position to play with one that reunite, pushing around the walk with his toes and with his hands. It left 4-48 to Hazlewood, having removed nightwatchman Craig Overton from the second over.
This was Australia’s momentum, it seems likely they would have done more damage had the mild not closed in.
England were under pressure when Burns was combined by Root from 23-1 immediately as well as Overton adding only two to his fast three.
The rate bowler bravely repelled, Root participated in a battle of wits and had his box broken by a blow from Mitchell Starc.
As they warmed to the job, runs were accumulated when Starc was wayward and Lyon dropped brief.
Root and burns scored square of the wicket on both sides. While Burns has almost 100 runs more than most of the other openers at the series combined root followed up his half-century from the next innings at Headingley.
Despite the fact that Burns’ dismissal triggered the late slump, England were transferred to a position from where they should get the 98 runs that they need to prevent the follow-on.
By the conclusion of the afternoon, there were several indicators of this ball starting to keep low, adding a further complication order to save the game.
England opener Rory Burns on BBC Test Match Special:”It is not perfect, losing these wickets, but how we scrapped throughout the afternoon, we are in an adequate position.
“Test cricket is Test cricket and it was challenging sometimes. I found a way and that is most likely the procedure of my own batting.
“It’s about partnerships, now. We are in a fight and it is very clear what we need to do come tomorrow”
Former England captain Michael Vaughan:”This is Australia’s sport to lose. England need to bat into the afternoon session outside lunch and they’re taking overs from the game they’ll need to bat on Sunday, if they could reach 350. It will be the terrific escape”
“This Pat Cummins charm was probably the very best of the show and the simple fact is, Rory Burns lived that spell. That should give him a huge amount of confidence. Every single person that loves Test cricket would respect what Cummins made for his group now.”
Australia bowler Pat Cummins:”The ball started to zip around and I felt in the game. It wasn’t to be for me. It takes wickets at the other end right away and makes me happy when Josh comes on. He’d say,’I owe you for that’.
“We’re fairly happy being 300 ahead. It was a challenging day of Test cricket. To get those three wickets late, we feel really at the match.”
Eccentric, Australian Steve Smith and curious is a cricketer that is special, says BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew.
Steve Smith produced day 2 of the fourth Exam feel as torture although england should not be written off, writes Stephan Shemilt.
Was Ben Stokes’ Test at Headingley the England win of all time?
Analysis and comment by the cricket correspondent of the BBC.
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