Pacer Mitchell claims 4-82 as Australia bowl out England for 283 after Cummins calls right at toss; Harry Brook helps hosts with fighting 85 on Day One
Mitchell Starc celebrates the wicket of Harry Brook yesterday. Pics/Getty Images
Harry Brook fell short of a century as Australia bowled out England for 283 on the first day of the fifth and final Ashes Test at The Oval on Thursday.
Left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc lead Australia’s attack with 4-82 from 14.4 overs.
Earlier, England were 250-7 at tea, having lost four wickets for 28 runs after reaching 184-3. Brook was dismissed for 85 after he had come in with England struggling at 73-3 in a match they must win to deny Australia an outright series win.
Harry Brook during his 85 yesterday
The tourists, 2-1 up following last week’s rain-marred draw at Old Trafford, have already retained the Ashes. Brook rebuilt the innings during a stand of 111 with Moeen Ali (34) that featured a blizzard of boundaries typifying England’s aggressive ‘Bazball’ approach to Test cricket. He hooked left-arm fast bowler Starc for six and Moeen twice hoisted Australia captain Pat Cummins high over the boundary rope.
When off-spinner Todd Murphy, in for all-rounder Cameron Green, dropped short with his second ball, Moeen, struggling with a leg injury, pulled him for four. But he was bowled the next delivery, aiming across the line, starting a clatter of wickets that emboldened an Australia side bidding for a first Ashes series win in England since 2001.
Stokes was then bowled for just three by a full-length Starc delivery that kept low and Jonny Bairstow, fresh from his stunning 99 not out in Manchester, flat-footedly played on to Josh Hazlewood for four. Brook then fell in sight of what would have been his fifth Test century and first against Australia, when an edged drive off Starc was caught by Steve Smith at second slip to end a dashing 91-ball innings featuring 11 fours and two sixes.
Cummins won his first toss of the series and opted to field in overcast conditions that promised to assist the fast bowler and his fellow quicks. Having outfielded England for much of the series, Australia dropped three catches in a morning session during which the hosts were well-placed at 62-0. Australia, however, managed to reduce England to 73-3 either side of the drinks break.
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