Brisbane Ashes Test: England take up Oz challenge, end Day 4 on 309 for 1

Sunday, November 28, 2010

BRISBANE - England on Sunday responded strongly to Australia in their second innings in the first Ashes Test here, scoring 309 for the loss of skipper Andrew Strauss’s wicket.

Their openers Strauss and Alastair Cook, both of whom hit magnificent centuries to give the visitors a golden chance of saving the opening Test, provided England’s resilience on the fourth day.

The openers added 188 and when Strauss departed for 110, Jonathan Trott, who helped, Cook put on a further 121 for the second wicket, took up the challenge.

Cook ended unbeaten on 132 and Trott was unbeaten on 54.

England held a lead of 88 with a day left, when bad light stopped play.

The tourists, inspired by their captain, set about showing they’d learnt the lessons from their poor first innings score of 260, and forced Australia to toil all day in the field.

The England score line suggests that Australia did not have the required firepower to put the tourists on the mat, in spite of all cards being in their favour at the start of play.

Strauss’s 19th Test hundred, and fourth against Australia, arrived from 184 balls when he late cut Xavier Doherty and his aggression against spin was a key part of the innings.

He knew England couldn’t block their way to safety, and often used his feet to advance and loft down the ground.

His century celebration was unusually emotional.

He was eventually beaten in flight by off-spinner Marcus North and was stumped by wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.

Cook reached his ton with a rasping cut shortly after tea. Shortly afterwards he gave a tough chance to Peter Siddle at fine leg off a top-edged pull, but Siddle couldn’t quite hold on as he dived forward.

Trott, who was also given a reprieve on 34, was able to reach his half century shortly before bad light ended play.

The Score: England 260 and 1 for 309 (Cook 132*, Strauss 110, Trott 54*) lead Australia 481 by 88 runs. (ANI)

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