Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Australia are on the verge of regaining the Ashes
Australia made quick work of England on the final day of the second Test in Adelaide as they cruised to a 218-run win and took a commanding 2-0 lead in the series.
Australia’s pace duo of Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris both took two wickets on the final day as England lost their remaining four wickets in just over an hour.
Starting out the day on 247/6, England wicketkeeper Matt Prior and pace bowler Stuart Broad only managed to add eight runs onto their 37-run partnership before Broad hooked a delivery from Siddle straight to Nathan Lyon at deep square leg to be dismissed for 29.
Graeme Swann only managed to score six runs before edging a delivery from Harris to Australia skipper Michael Clarke at second slip.
Prior ended up racing past his half-century before being caught by Harris at deep backward square leg when attempting a hook shot off the bowling of Siddle.
Prior’s brilliant knock of 69 came off 102 balls and included 12 boundaries.
Just two overs later, Australia began their celebrations as Monty Panesar hit a delivery from Harris straight to Chris Rogers at short extra cover to leave England all out for 312.
James Anderson was left stranded on 13 runs off 14 deliveries, which included two boundaries.
Siddle was the pick of the Australian bowlers with four wickets, while Harris snapped up three and Mitchell Johnson, Steven Smith and Lyon all chipped in with one wicket apiece.
England captain Alastair Cook was extremely disappointed to have lost the match as he knows the national team have never come back to win an Ashes series after being 2-0 down.
“On that first day we had an opportunity but we let our chances go with some dropped catches,” he said. “You don’t get too many chances on good wickets and that was the main difference between the sides. We need to look at ourselves and comes back strong.
“We’ve got to work against Johnson. We have too look at our techniques. One high point is that Root came through the test at No. 3 very well and showed a lot of fight. You’ve got to work as hard as you can and that’s the only thing we can do. It’s only us that can make the difference.”
Clarke was ecstatic to be on the verge of regaining the Ashes after having failed to do so in the last three encounters.
“I closed the curtains quickly this morning, the last thing we wanted was rain but thank God for the weather,” he said. “The follow-on wasn’t that tough of a decision because I wanted our bowlers to have a rest. The tough one was not letting David Warner get a hundred but he was more than happy to stand aside of for the team.
“Our catching has improved over a number of year and we have the best throwing coach in the world. The most pleasing thing is finally getting the results our efforts have deserved in the last few months but we’ve still got a lot of hard work to do to get back to No. 1 in the world and that’s our goal.”
Johnson was named Man of the Match for the eight wickets he took.
“It’s a special feeling to be able to back up Brisbane with [this performance] here,” he said. “Our bowling attack has been outstanding and I was really excited to be back with them here. The Mo will stay for the rest of the series and I’m still trying to raise 50,000 dollars.”