Stokes: “The weather forecast could decide how we play in the 4th Ashes Test”
Jonny Bairstow hit a quick 99 as England took the lead in the first half on day three of the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford.
Harry Brook and Ben Stokes both hit 50 points before Bairstow beat Australian pitchers anywhere on the ground, falling only once in a century as he ran out of partners when James Anderson was caught in an LBW trap by Cameron Green.
England finally went all out for 592 to take a 275-run lead into the second half, and are chasing quick goals ahead of a weekend forecast to be hit hard by rain in Manchester.
Follow all the action live from Old Trafford as England face Australia:
Australia 68/2 (21), Marnus Labuschagne 17, Steve Smith 4, Stuart Broad 0-31 (8) (207)
Ben Stokes tried to bring in James Anderson in place of Stuart Broad, but Anderson has been out for a while and has yet to be allowed into the attack again. To mark the wood then? No, Stokes sticks with the old guard, Broad gets the fifth of his spell.
Steve Smith forced past additional cover, stood on tiptoe and then strode behind the three, before Marnus Labuschagne jerked a similar ball with his foot, slicing his teammate with a finish line as Broad scowled at the holes in his landing area.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 17:02
Australia 61/2 (20), Marnus Labuschagne 13, Steve Smith 1, Chris Woakes 1-5 (4) (last 214)
That’s really very, very tight. The ICC has dropped the soft signal for this summer, with officials on the scene no longer having to give indications as to whether they think such an incident has occurred – however, we have seen a number of such cases persist over the past few weeks.
On balance, you’d say it’s a fair enough call, especially since Root himself isn’t so sure.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:57
Not out! Australia 60/2 (19.1), Marnus Labuschagne 13, Steve Smith 0, Chris Woakes 1-4 (3.1) (under 215)
Goodness, it was tighter than Root’s immediate reaction suggested, and Kumar Dharmasena had an aged look – but it seemed to have bounced off the palm of the hand rather than clenched fists. Dharmasena finally came to the same conclusion.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:54
Australia 60/2 (19.1), Marnus Labuschagne 13, Steve Smith 0, Chris Woakes 1-4 (3.1) (under 215)
Edge but only short! Or is it? Joe Root immediately said no on the first miss, but the third umpire wanted to make sure…
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:50
Australia 60/2 (19), Marnus Labuschagne 13, Steve Smith 0, Stuart Broad 0-24 (7) (under 215)
An exciting hit from Marnus Labuschagne, showing his full face to push the ball past the pitcher in four captivating runs.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:49
Australia 54/2 (18), Marnus Labuschagne 7, Steve Smith 0, Chris Woakes 1-4 (3) (221)
Another in the wickets column for Chris Woakes, who is really enjoying the coolest comeback to whites in the UK. Steve Smith joins Marnus Labuschagne.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:46
OUTSIDE! David Warner b Woakes 28 (53b 3×4 0x6), Australia 54/2 (17.5)
David Warner does the hard work and throws it again! Warner plans to play and then mull over a role, end up doing nothing and doing nothing else and going back to his stump.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:42
Australia 54/1 (17.2), Marnus Labuschagne 7, David Warner 28, Chris Woakes 0-4 (2,2) (ranked 221)
Chris Woakes is finally showing his generous side, a player rising high into David Warner’s ribs crashing straight into a four-way corner after 13 balls in the money. Warner is off to another start – and one that he really can’t waste.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:41
Australia 50/1 (17), Marnus Labuschagne 7, David Warner 24, Stuart Broad 0-18 (6) (under 225)
A pirate! That should irritate British pitchers, Marnus Labuschagne’s toes crash when a Stuart Board ball fails to lift, a cloud of dust indicating this abraded surface. A few inches from the stump with a late hitter’s down push, though Labuschagne crossed to say goodbye.
50 for Australia via a David Warner pat.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:38
Australia 46/1 (16), Marnus Labuschagne 6, David Warner 22, Chris Woakes 0-0 (2) (ranked 229)
Oh, that was a good move from Chris Woakes, shoving the ball past David Warner after finishing the left-hander’s first shot into the corner. Warner is attacking with his footwork but has held on to the line to avoid the same fate.
A dozen dots to start Woakes.
Harry Latham-CoyleJuly 21, 2023 16:33