Six-star Broad proud of 'very special afternoon'

England

Fast bowler Stuart Broad cherished a dramatic turnaround shortly after the tea break, after leading England to a 74-run triumph – and unassailable three-nil series lead – over Australia on day four of the penultimate Ashes Test at the Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street.

Fast bowler Stuart Broad cherished a dramatic turnaround shortly after the tea break, after leading England to a 74-run triumph – and unassailable three-nil series lead – over Australia on day four of the penultimate Ashes Test at the Riverside Ground in Chester-le-Street.

Chasing a stiff 299-run target after the home side's second innings had climbed to 330 all out on the back of batsman Ian Bell's outstanding century, the Australians' reply enjoyed a strong start thanks to openers Chris Rogers and David Warner.

109 without loss, however, soon became 175 for five and finally 224 all out, as the host attack clinched all of nine wickets in Monday's closing session. Broad, for his raw pace and outstanding ability to extract swing and lateral movement off the pitch, was at the fore of the capitulation.

Adding six for 50 to his first-innings haul of five for 71, the talented right-armer finished with career-best figures of 11 for 121 – and rightfully the Man of the Match award. While Bell, Australian seamer Ryan Harris and opener Chris Rogers had impressed in bursts, Broad's performance was consistent and longstanding.

"It was a very special afternoon. In this game, pretty much for each hour, it could have gone either way. Certainly at 40 for three in our second innings we were staring down the barrel a bit. Australia have shown in this series what a fighting side they are," he said.

"We gathered ourselves at tea with Australia having won that session without doubt. Our bowlers were too caught up in hitting the deck hard which was a little too far back of a length. But once we got the ball fuller we got the ball to move and we were massively in the game."

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All-rounder Tim Bresnan had started the visitors' slide by removing the left-handed David Warner for 71, while spinner Graeme Swann struck with the scalps of number three Usman Khawaja and Rogers soon thereafter. The rest, largely, fell prey to Man of the Match Broad, who fitting secured the final wicket – tail-ender Peter Siddle – to seal the result.

"The great thing about this side is we have a lot of experience in the changing room. There are one or two in our dressing room who could become the leading ever in terms of series wins for England in the Ashes, which is a special era to play in," he added.

"The guys put their heads together calmly and decided the best way forward. Alastair Cook was clear what he wanted the bowlers to do. We needed to make the Aussies play off the front foot a little bit more. Despite the openers beginning well it was a very hard wicket to start on and we always had in the back of our minds that with 300 on the board we can put a lot of pressure on the new batsmen.

"Once we got some early wickets after tea the bowlers got their tails up and we put the new batsmen under pressure. The crowd gave us a huge lift. It was a special moment when we took that final wicket."

Seamer Graham Onions, meanwhile, has been ruled out of contention for the fifth and final Test, which will get underway at The Oval in London on 21 August.

Onions was named in the squads for the second and fourth matches, but did not feature in either XI, as England retained the same attack throughout. The right-armer broke a finger on his bowling hand during Sunday's Yorkshire Bank 40 fixture between Scotland and Durham at Titwood in Glasgow.

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