Bell insists England can salvage a draw

England

England batsman Ian Bell feels his side still has a chance to draw the third Ashes Test in Perth, though they have a huge battle ahead of them on day five as they're five down with 253 runs required.

England batsman Ian Bell feels his side still has a chance to draw the third Ashes Test in Perth, though they have a huge battle ahead of them on day five as they're five down with 253 runs required.

Australia set them a target of 504 runs just before lunch on day four, and Bell was instrumental in getting his side into a fifth day, scoring 60 in a partnership of 99 with Ben Stokes.

Bell felt the Three Lions could still pull a draw out the hat, with Stokes and out-of-form Matt Prior in the middle overnight, despite the huge cracks in the wicket and Australia's fast bowlers on the prowl.

Bell told <i>Sky Sports 2</i>: "There are a few cracks on the wicket but apart from that it's a good surface. A bit of luck our way and you never know.

"You do see a lot of pitches go like that. This has done a bit more than other pitches in Australia. If you get one that goes off the crack then fair play.

"He (Prior) is ready for a good fight and to scrap it out. That's just Matt. If Stokesy can stay with him we'll give it a good go tomorrow."

Bell was especially pleased with all-rounder Stokes, whose 72 not out ensured a bit of hope going into the final day, and was his maiden Test half century, in this his second match.

Bell added: "He's fantastic. Since we've been here in the nets he's looked a quality batsman. He's been a real find for us. Going forward everything looks like he's going to have a great career for England."

The number five admitted England had been rather poor for most of the series, with bat and ball and in the field, with he himself dropping two catches on day four.

He added: "We have been put under a lot of pressure, the way Mitchell Johnson as come in aggressively with Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle backing him up.

"Apart from day one in Brisbane where we bowled well we have been on the back foot. A lack of first innings runs has put us under a lot of pressure.

"They are bowling well as a unit and have a clear plan, as individual bowlers as well.

"I don't think we set the standard we usually do in the field. We let ourselves down a bit in the field but came back and showed a bit of fight with the bat."

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