Australia has ripped through England in the final session to win the fifth and final Ashes Test in Hobart inside three days, securing a 4-0 series victory.
Australia started the day at 3/37 only leading by 152 runs and was met by a rampaging Mark Wood who claimed his third five-wicket haul in Test cricket, claiming six wickets.
Australia was bowled out for 155, setting England 271 for victory. England got off to a great start, registering their highest opening partnership of the series before losing 9/48 in the final session to capitulate to a rampaging home side.
Here are the moments that mattered from the final day of the series:
Wood delivers early strikes for England on a big opening hour for the tourists.
He’s been the pick of England’s bowling attack all tour and on Day 3, it looks as if Mark Wood was finally being rewarded with the bag of wickets he duly deserves.
After delivering a vicious and quick short ball barrage to the Australian batters last night, Wood was busy in the morning, continuing with the same tactic to make inroads into Australia’s middle order to try and restrict Australia to a chaseable total.
He started by removing the nightwatchman Scott Boland, who survived 25 deliveries last night to get through to the morning with Steve Smith. He added five runs to his overnight score before he edged behind to Sam Billings for eight.
The wicket brought first-innings centurion Travis Head to the crease. Wood from the get-go persisted with the shot ball tactic to the left-hander. After getting a boundary away early off Stuart Broad with a punch down the ground.
Wood would ultimately prevail with Head failing to get his gloves out of the way of another short delivery and gloved through to Sam Billings to give Wood his third wicket.
Smith holes out to finish underwhelming, first century-less Ashes
Wood didn’t have to wait long to celebrate his fourth wicket for the innings, removing the big ace in the Australian pack.
Having gotten through last night and the opening stages of the morning, Steve Smith decided the best way to combat the short ball approach from Mark Wood was to take it on and try to lift him out of the ground.
The attempt though, cost him his wicket when he attempted a hook shot down to fine leg which was caught by Dawid Malan. It brought Smith’s Ashes campaign with the bat to an end, his leanest since his debut series in 2010/11.
Over the five matches, Smith scored 244 runs @ 30.50 with a high score of 93. One of only two half-centuries.
It is the first Ashes series since his debut Ashes in 2010/11 where Smith didn’t register three figures, and only the eighth time in his Test career that Smith has played a full Test series without scoring a century.
Smith’s Test average also dropped below 60 for the first time since September 2017.
Woakes’ costly misstep gives Carey a second chance
With Australia reeling in its second innings and needing a big partnership and contributions from its lower order, Alex Carey, who hasn’t had a great deal of luck this series with the bat since the first innings in Adelaide, had a moment of fortune go his way.
On 19 at the time and with Australia 6/91 after just 36 overs with a lead of just over 200 runs, Alex Carey looked to get outside the line of his stumps and chopped on and was bowled by Chris Woakes.
He was halfway off the ground but replays showed that Woakes had just overstepped and was a no-ball, giving the Australian wicketkeeper a much-needed reprieve and slice of luck.
Five-time ICC umpire of the year Simon Taufel, who has been a part of Channel 7’s coverage explaining tricky umpiring decisions said he would have made the same decision if he was sitting in the Third umpire’s chair.
Wood complete’s maiden Aussie five – for after Carey gets a second life
Stats often don’t tell the full story in cricket and that has certainly been the case for Mark Wood. The English tearaway has bowled his heart out all tour for the tourists and has been the one bowler who has enhanced his reputation on his first Ashes tour to Australia.
After doing the damage early this morning with three wickets in the first hour, Wood completed his richly deserved five-wicket haul when he had Mitchell Starc caught at short-leg by Ollie Pope. His career-best figures and a third five-wicket haul in test cricket.
Wood nearly had his sixth wicket the very next ball when he trapped Pat Cummins leg before which was given out on field by umpire Rod Tucker. It was sent upstairs and ball-tracking showed that the ball was just missing the stumps and Cummins was spared.
The Wood moment came after another DRS moment of intrigue which handed Alex Carey yet another life. Carey was adjudged out LBW by Paul Wilson off Stuart Broad. Carey reviewed as Australia’s last remaining batter of note. Ball tracking showed that the ball had just pitched outside the leg stump – meaning Carey was once again called back and able to resume his innings.
Carey falls agonisingly short of raising his bat as Australia set England 271 for victory
He rode his luck along the way, but when he needed to stand up and put in a great performance with the bat for his country, Alex Carey did just that.
Out of form and battling his way through tricky conditions, with wickets falling all around him, amid some luck, got himself to 49 before he inside-edged one through to Sam Billings behind the stumps and was caught one run short of his second half-century in test cricket.
It was a fortuitous innings from the Australian wicketkeeper, but it was an important innings to ensure that Australia got themselves to a defendable territory given how the series has panned out.
Mark Wood claimed the final wicket of the innings, clean bowling Pat Cummins to bowl Australia out for 155, and claim figures of 6/37 to finish the series with 17 wickets.
Another non-review goes begging as England openers register series milestone
England started their final innings of the tour with nothing to lose and everything to gain. With the Test match moving at a rate of knots, Australia missed another chance to make a vital breakthrough early.
After a couple of non-referrals that would have resulted in wickets in the first innings, After an expensive opening two overs, Australia missed another chance to refer a decision and get an early wicket.
Mitchell Starc was bowling to Rory Burns and hit him in line. The Australians must have thought that Burns had hit it because they didn’t even appeal or have a discussion to consider going upstairs.
Ball tracking, when flashed on the big screen that he, in fact, didn’t hit it and the ball was crashing into the stumps with three red lights.
It was one of several reprives for England in the opening hour of their innings with Usman Khawaja just out of reach of a Zak Crawley edge that raced to the boundary for four.
As both openers continued to ride their luck and settle in, Burns and Crawley registered England’s highest opening partnership of the series when they crossed the 47 run mark.
The pair crossed the 50 partnership, a rarity for opening partnerships for England in Ashes since the turn of the century.
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Green machine strikes on the stroke of tea
Just as it looked like England was going to make it through to the tea interval unscathed, Australia got their much sought-after breakthrough in the last over before the tea break.
Having survived several chances in the opening hour and a bit, including a DRS shout for caught behind the previous over, Cameron Green struck through for the Australians as Burns played an inside edge back onto his stumps and was bowled for 26.
Green has constantly proven to be a threat with ball in hand this series, and now, having made contributions with the bat both in Sydney and in Hobart, joined some elite company with his performances in his series to date. Becoming just the fourth man in test history to take 10+ wickets and score 200+ runs in a series before his 23rd birthday.
Green blows away top order in 4 over blast as Starc gets Stokes
Pat Cummins needed someone to produce something special for him as dusk fell in Hobart. After making the first incision just before the tea break, Cameron Green continued to bend his back reap the rewards that he and Australia were after.
He started by working over Dawid Malan, who strode to the crease after the tea break and struggled to look comfortable at the crease.
After copping a heavy blow to the helmet, Malan became the second English batter to chop the ball back onto his stumps. Bowled for 10.
He struck again in his next over when he removed Zak Crawley edging behind for 36 to Alex Carey.
A great catch from the Australian wicketkeeper who moved quickly to his right and pouched the chance. The same type of chance that he had spilled in the previous three tests this series.
The wickets continued to fall in the third session when Mitchell Starc dismissed Ben Stokes for just five. The all-rounder rocked back onto a hook shot and holed out to Nathan Lyon who held on in the deep.
Boland castles Root for the fourth time as England sink further
Once again, just as England had gotten themselves into a position where they were able to start dictating the game and have all the momentum, they would hand it back to Australia on a silver platter.
After Cameron Green’s blast and Mitchell Starc’s removal of Ben Stokes, Scott Boland added his name to the wicket-takers when he bowled Joe Root with the second ball after the drinks break in the final session.
With the pitch starting to offer some uneven bounce, the delivery from Boland stayed low but was quick to get through the defences of the England captain who had to depart for 11.
It ended a good but tough series from the England skipper who leaves Australia for the third time scoring plenty of runs, but the three-score down under continues to elude him.
Boland followed up with the wicket of Sam Billings a couple of overs later. Chipping to Pat Cummins at mid-on for one.
Cummins got himself into the wickets column when he bowled Ollie Pope for five, With England in the midst of a horrible 7/39 collapse since just before tea.
Australia rejoices with Ashes retention as the white flag gets raised.
It all ended quickly.
From 0/68, England lost 10/56 to capitulate in the final session of Day 3 in Hobart with captain Pat Cummins cleaning up the England tail to secure the 146 run victory.
Chris Woakes was the first in the final sequence to fall. Edging behind a ball which flew quickly to wicketkeeper Alex Carey. A ball that he picked up late and plucked seemingly out of mid-air, again moving to his right to complete a very good catch. Removing Woakes for five.
Mark Wood was the next to follow. After swinging Pat Cummins away to the boundary for consecutive deliveries, Wood stepped outside the line of his stumps and chopped the ball onto his stumps for 11.
The final wicket to fall, Ollie Robinson, still hobbled after back spasms in the first innings, only lasted one ball and was bowled as he moved out of the way. Finishing the collapse, finishing the series, and finishing the demolition of England.
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