Michael Clarke’s final Test victory has been delayed.
Australia, after losing the toss, produced a far more resolute first-innings batting display than in the fourth Test at Trent Bridge where they collapsed to 60 all out, with Stuart Broad taking eight for 15 to set up England’s Ashes-clinching innings and 78-run victory.
“Joe Root has been outstanding and led our batting, he has been our leading light and he thoroughly deserves to win man of the series“, Cook said.
“It gives us a good opportunity at winning this Test match“.
England captain Alastair Cook said he was excited by the future for his emerging side following their Ashes campaign win over Australia.
Cook took 27 balls to score his first run and batted with watchful intent.
It was a sad end to the series for the Ashes victors, who will be delighted to regain The Ashes but disappointed to do so after such a heavy defeat. And when he was out late in the day for 85 to the part-time spin of Steve Smith, the game was surely up.
His return made the experienced 30-year-old seamer’s omission from the previous four Tests all the more surprising.
“We’re up against it but we’ve just got to keep fighting and hang in there”, he said. “I think we as a team have some awesome times ahead of us”.
But on 19 he donated his wicket when, off Siddle’s second-ball loosener, the left-hander pulled to Mitchell Starc, running round from mid-on.
He will resume on day four 33 not out from 80 balls and in search of a morale-boosting score.
Players from both sides wore black armbands in memory of Australia’s Arthur Morris, one of Test cricket’s greatest opening batsman and a member of Don Bradman’s celebrated 1948 “Invincibles”, whose death at the age of 93 was announced Saturday.
“This has to be right up there in terms of my achievements and I am very proud of my team”. But today it was about just trying to scrap and stay in there.
“These are the series that you get up for and it’s been great to be a part of”.
Siddle, only playing after Josh Hazlewood was injured, bowled with both pace and control on his way to innings figures of four for 35 in 24.4 overs including 12 maidens.
He would love to mark his comeback with a win but knows that the elements could mean there is a limited window of opportunity. We can’t afford to do that too many times, but at other times we will grab the sessions by the scruff of the neck and hammer home our advantage.
“It’s obviously tough being on the sidelines and carrying drinks, but to get this opportunity and come out here and bowl well is good”. It has been such a team performance throughout the whole series.