Australia bowled out for 60 in fourth test of Ashes series
England put themselves on course to regain the Ashes at Trent Bridge as they dominated with both bat and ball on the opening day of the fourth Test today.
Leading the series 2-1 after their seven-wicket triumph at Edgbaston, the hosts bundled out their opponents for just 60 before reaching 274 for 4 in reply, meaning they already hold a sizeable lead of 214 runs.
Stuart Broad claimed career-best figures of 8 for 15 as Australia, put into bat under heavy skies in Nottingham, were bowled out inside a session. Their innings lasted all of 18.3 overs, with extras (14) finishing as the top scorer.
Any hope the tourists had of bowling their way back into the contest were dashed by an unbeaten century from Joe Root. Another Yorkshireman, Jonny Bairstow, contributed 74 during a fourth-wicket stand of 173.
If Michael Clarke’s side had high hopes of getting on level terms at the start of play, by the end of it they were left hoping for a miracle just to keep the series alive by the time they travel to the Oval.
Broad –– a bowler who has produced sparkling spells against England’s fiercest rivals in the past –– was the catalyst for a stunning Australia collapse in the morning, starting with him taking two wickets in the opening over of the match.
He needed just three balls to see off opener Chris Rogers for a duck, in doing so reaching the landmark of 300 Test scalps. The other Englishmen to have achieved the feat are James Anderson, who is missing the fourth Test due to a side strain, Sir Ian Botham, Bob Willis and Fred Trueman.
Broad went on to complete a five-wicket haul in just 19 deliveries, Steve Smith, Shaun Marsh –– recalled to Australia’s XI in place of his brother, Mitchell –– Adam Voges and Michael Clarke his other scalps in his first 3.1 overs.
The Nottinghamshire seamer also went on to account for the Mitchells, Starc and Johnson, in his seventh over, then wrapped up the innings by getting Nathan Lyon caught in the slips.
Australia were bowled out before lunch in a Test match for the first time since 1896. Only Clarke –– who made 10 before flashing at a wide delivery that resulted in an edge to first slip –– and Johnson (13) reached double figures.
Mark Wood, drafted back in by England to replace the injured Anderson, and Steve Finn backed up the red-hot Broad with a wicket apiece.
England lost Adam Lyth (14) and Ian Bell –– who made just one –– before they had moved ahead, Starc (3-73) accounting for both players.
Captain Alastair Cook weighed in with 43 before he too fell to the left-arm paceman. Like Bell, he was leg before wicket to a very full delivery that, because of late movement in the air, trapped him on the crease.
However, Root and Bairstow combined in an excellent partnership. With each run they added in the evening session, the duo rubbed salt into Australia’s wounds.
Root reached his eighth Test century when a cut shot off David Warner for one of his 19 fours. England’s vice-captain also managed a six, launching off-spinner Lyon over the rope at deep mid-wicket, as he ended unbeaten on 124.
Bairstow overcame a patchy start to progress nicely past 50, though his hope of a maiden Test ton were dashed when he flicked a leg-side delivery from Josh Hazlewood straight to square leg. It was a disappointing way to finish, but nothing could ruin England’s mood after a dramatic day that will live long in the memory.