THE ASHES LIVE! All the action from Day 5 at the MCG.
MACQUARIE’S SUMMER OF CRICKET LINE-UP: Mike Hussey, Damien Fleming, Ian Chappell, Glenn McGrath, John Emburey, Carl Rackemann, Tim Lane, and Bruce Eva.
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The Captains have agreed that no result will be achieved and will call it a draw. Australia still lead 3-0.
England were gallant throughout the afternoon but could not do enough to get the victory at the MCG. Steve Smith ended the day with 102 not out.
Joe Root got the crucial wicket of David Warner on 86. While Stuart Broad removed Shaun Marsh for 4 before Lunch.
Steve Smith has brought up his 23rd Test Century and single handedly saved his team from defeat in the process. Smith has never looked like being dismissed as he just wore down the English bowlers with his third century of the series.
England continue to struggle to bowl to the unorthodox Smith who has just passed 600 runs for the series, with one Test to go, which means he could get 700 runs or more for the series, which would mean he is the resounding favourite for player of the series.
Catch up on all the latest Ashes news here:
- Agar added to Aussie squad for final Ashes Test
- England strike twice to boost hopes of win
- Bayliss rejects ball tampering talk
Steve Smith has continued to be a thorn in Englands side as he remains not out at the Tea break and closing in on his 23rd Test Match century.
Mitch Marsh has stuck around with his captain and has faced 97 balls for his 10 as Australia are closing in on a draw at the MCG.
Shaun Marsh fell on the cusp of Lunch before Mitch Marsh and Smith have slowly but surely ensured this match will end up in a disappointing draw.
Australia sit 4/225 with a lead of 61.
Australia are eeking out a disappointing draw at the MCG as Mitch Marsh and Steve Smith slowly ensure England do not win the Test Match.
Aus 4/225 with a lead of 61. #Ashes
— Macquarie Cricket (@MRNCricket) December 30, 2017
200 comes up for Australia as they continue to fight their way to a draw, Steve Smith has been defiant again as he moves past 50 for the fourth time this series.
England looked to be on top after removing David Warner and Shaun Marsh just before Lunch before Smith, as he was always going to be, has made himself an immovable figure as he looks to save the game for his team.
Mitch Marsh had a shaky start to his innings before settling in and remains in the middle with Smith in the lead up to the drinks break.
Shaun Marsh has fallen on the stroke of lunch to keep England in the hunt at the MCG. Stuart Broad has taken the big wicket to put the Australian side at 4/178 at the main break.
It is now up to Steve Smith and Mitch Marsh to dig in to try and stop England from batting again to win this Test Match.
Australia will now be hoping they can keep out the English bowlers and push for a draw on the final day of cricket for 2017.
England took the upper hand when Joe Root removed David Warner for 86 before Broad struck just before lunch to swing the game back in their favour.
IAN CHAPPELL ON MOEEN ALI
Ian Chappell has once again been critical about Moeen Ali and what England need to do to replace him.
“I am not convinced he is your main spinner in England – you need a front line spinner you can take anywhere in the world”
“I think you have got to play Mason Crane in Sydney, and that is the best place for him to play, you have got to find out what the young man can do.”
Ashton Agar has been added to the Australian squad for the Sydney Test as the hosts will look to potentially add a second spin option in the final Test of the series.
Flem: “Ashton Agar has been added to the squad for the Sydney Test” #Ashes
— Macquarie Cricket (@MRNCricket) December 29, 2017
Cook makes the wall!
The MCC have wasted no time making a change to the famous wall in the Percy Beames bar with Viv Richards score of 208 being replaced by Alastair Cook’s 244 not out. He joins Arthur Mailey, Sarfraz Nawaz and Bob Cowper on the wall at the bar which denotes the best figures and best scores at the famous MCG!
— Macquarie Cricket (@MRNCricket) December 29, 2017
Final Day at the MCG!
Rain drew an early close to day 4, and potentially to England’s chances of winning the Test Match. England were on top after Alastair Cook carried his bat through their first innings ending up 244 not out, whilst the visitors had a 161 run lead. The match will start 30 minutes earlier today due to the delay and we will see a maximum of 98 overs bowled in the day.
Australia got off to a bright start – racing to 0/51 before Cameron Bancroft played one onto his stumps off Chris Woakes. Usman Khawaja was in a reckless mood again with the Aussie number three hitting Moeen Ali for a six and a four in consecutive balls before Jimmy Anderson got the ball to shape away and catch the edge of Khawaja’s bat. It continues his lean run this series, and may see him dropped for Sydney.
David Warner was the mainstay for Australia, following on from his 103 in the first innings he is currently 40 not out and looking damaging once again. He is joined by his skipper Steve Smith, who has been largely untroubled at the crease and ended the night 25 not out.
The Test is in a precarious position going into Day 5, the most likely scenario is that it fizzles out into a disappointing draw, which will devastate England, who have been on top all match. The pitch at the MCG has been flat all Test and it is hard to see England bowling Australia out on the final day to force a result.
Catch up on all the latest Cricket news here:
- Maxwell: I have unfinished business with Australia
- England on top at Lunch
- Iconic MCG bar set to be updated
RECAP DAY 4