Image: Cricket – Ashes test match – Australia v England – Adelaide Oval, Adelaide, Australia, December 4, 2017. Australia’s Pat Cummins celebrates with team mates after he dismissed England’s Dawid Malan during the third day of the second Ashes cricket test match. REUTERS/David Gray
By Nick Mulvenney
ADELAIDE (Reuters) – England’s struggles continued early on day three of the second Ashes test on Monday when Joe Root and Alastair Cook were among four wickets to fall to leave the tourists on 128 for five at tea, still 314 behind Australia.
Moeen Ali was unbeaten on 22 at the end of the first session with Jonny Bairstow holding up the other end on 17 not out, the pair having put on 26 runs for the sixth wicket.
England resumed on 29-1 in reply to Australia’s 442-8 declared on another overcast afternoon at Adelaide Oval but lost James Vince for two in the second over when the Englishman nicked behind off Josh Hazlewood.
Already 1-0 down in the five-match series after a 10-wicket defeat in the opener in Brisbane, England were desperate for a decent partnership and expectations were high when Root came out to join Cook in the middle.
Skipper Root, though, came in and made nine runs off 10 balls before he got a thick edge to a Pat Cummins delivery which Cameron Bancroft took comfortably at third slip to leave England on 50-3.
Dawid Malan got a life when he successfully referred an lbw decision with six runs to his name and another when he set off for a run which Cook declined and was saved by an inaccurate throw from the fielder.
Cook and Malan looked like they might combine for a few runs but their partnership was worth only 30 when England’s most prolific batsman departed for 37 just after drinks.
The 32-year-old opener prodded at a Nathan Lyon tweaker and Australia skipper Steve Smith gobbled up the catch at first slip to give the off-spinner his 50th test wicket in matches against England.
All-rounder Moeen cracked successive fours off Lyon to take England over the hundred mark but Malan departed for 19 from the first ball of the next over, caught behind when he got a bit of glove on another snorter from Cummins.
Shaun Marsh showed with his unbeaten 126 on Sunday that runs could be made on the wicket but England are likely face a fierce examination from Australia’s confident quicks, as well as Lyon, as the first Ashes day-nighter heads towards a third evening.
(Editing by John O’Brien)
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