Fourth Ashes Test – Day three: England put up fight with Jonny Bairstow ton
Jonny Bairstow struck England’s first century of the Ashes – and ended a personal drought of more than three years – as the tourists finally showed some steel in Sydney.
Responding to Australia’s 416 for eight declared, things seemed to be heading towards a brisk conclusion when England slumped to 36 for four on day three at the SCG.
But Bairstow’s gutsy 103 not out, which came on a spiteful pitch and after an agonising blow to the thumb, ensured the New Year Test would be a genuine fight.
Tweet of the day
One of the greatest batters to ever play the game, India’s ‘little master’, Sachin Tendulkar, decides to back up the bowlers for once. England’s Ben Stokes saw his off stump clattered at 83mph by Cameron Green on 16 but went on to score another 50 runs after the bail somehow remained defiantly in place.
Sydney in the pink
For the 14th year, the famous SCG turned into a sea of pink in support of the McGrath Foundation – a charity set up by Australia great Glenn McGrath in honour of his late wife Jane, a victim of breast cancer. With crowd limits down due to Covid-19, ‘virtual’ seats were being sold to raise cash for nurses this year and, at the close of play, 206,780 had been bought raising 4,135,618 Australian dollars for the cause.
Top order troubles
They say you only get one chance to make a first impression and England have repeatedly made a hash of it when they take to the crease. With an average first-wicket stand of 9.57, what chance do the tourists have?
PM puts his foot in it
The United Kingdom is well used to the phenomenon of ill-judged comments from senior politicians, but even by those standards Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was guilty of a verbal gaffe when he stepped into the Fox commentary box. On a day when New South Wales introduced new restrictions due to the sharp spike in Covid-19 cases, he made a clumsy attempt to tie the surge of omicron to the cricket.
“We’ve got many challenges but this is Australia living with the virus…and Australians taking wickets in the virus,” he said to general bemusement.
Moeen tips a coaching candidate
During the morning rain break, the BT Sport studios conducted a debate on future England coaches and started with the World Cup-winning captain Eoin Morgan. Moeen Ali was quick to offer up a less obvious option when asked, talking up the credentials of T20 specialist Chris Jordan.
“He would be a very good coach. He’s great for the changing room, has personality and people can trust him. He can bat, he can bowl, he can field. I feel he’d be a very good coach.”
Pick of the pics
South Africa coach Mark Boucher charged with gross misconduct
Mark Boucher has been accused of discrimination.
Tahlia McGrath’s match-winning innings one of the best I’ve seen – Tammy Beaumont
Australia drew first blood in the Women’s Ashes against England.
Women’s Ashes: England lose opener as Tahlia McGrath stars for Australia
The all-rounder took three for 26 and then hit a match-winning 91 not out.
T20 Cricket: Phil Salt out to make more memories at Barbados’ Kensington Oval
Salt watched plenty of cricket at the ground growing up on the Caribbean island.
England in the West Indies: Jason Roy marks return with rapid century in Barbados
The batter hit a 36-ball hundred as the tourists easily beat a Barbados Cricket Association President’s XI.
ICC U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup
ICC Under 19 World Cup: India keep on winning, Australia bounce back
India made it two wins from two at the ICC Under 19 World Cup.
South Africa vs India: ‘We played close to the perfect game’ – Bavuma
South Africa beat India by 31 runs.
Women’s Ashes: England captain Heather Knight wants ‘really aggressive’ start
The the multi-format series gets under way with the first of three Twenty20 matches on Thursday.
T20 World Cup
England exclusive: Phil Salt focusing on the fundamentals in T20 World Cup bid
Phil Salt wants to be in the T20 World Cup squad in Australia.
Ottis Gibson announced as Yorkshire CCC head coach on three-year deal
Ottis Gibson comes into the troubled county.