Australia wins Adelaide Ashes Test by 275 runs to take 2-0 lead against England
Adelaide: Australia took a 2-0 lead in the five-test Ashes series on Monday by beating England by 275 runs and all but ensured the century-old urn will remain Down Under.
Set 468 runs to win, England was bowled out for 192 with 21 overs remaining on the final day of play in the day-night test at Adelaide Oval.
Jos Buttler (26) faced 207 deliveries for England before treading on his stumps to be out hit wicket in a losing cause.
Only one team has come from 2-0 down to win an Ashes series: Don Bradman’s Australians in 1936-37.
As holders of the Ashes, Australia needs only to draw the next match.
Paceman Jhye Richardson took five wickets as Australia followed its nine-wicket triumph in the first test in Brisbane with another resounding win, its ninth consecutive win in day-night matches.
Josh Hazlewood missed the Adelaide test because of a side strain. Fast bowler and captain Pat Cummins, a late scratch from the second test because he was a close contact of a COVID-19 case, will rejoin the squad on Thursday.
Hazlewood will need to prove his fitness in the Melbourne Cricket Ground nets to play the Boxing Day test starting Dec. 26.
The fourth and fifth tests in Sydney and Hobart, respectively, are in January.
Under-pressure opener Marcus Harris, who averages 22.19 from 12 tests after scores of three and 23 in Adelaide, is expected to remain at the top of the order.
“The reason it’s disappointing is because we made the same mistakes. I think we could have bowled a lot fuller, and with the bat we need to be better, make bigger scores and apply better,” said Root.
“The second innings is the attitude and desire we need. It’s frustrating because we know we are better. Lessons learnt, we have to be better in the next game.”
With Root, the world’s number one Test batsmen, removed by Mitchell Starc in the final over on Sunday evening, England’s hopes appeared to rest with allrounder Ben Stokes.
The 30-year-old has so often rescued his team, with memories of his match-winning exploits against Australia at Headingley in 2019 to keep that series alive still fresh.
But trying to nurse England’s batting through 90 overs against Australia’s relentless bowling was too big a task, even for him.
He put his head down and lasted 77 balls for 12 runs before Nathan Lyon struck. The umpire initially gave the lbw shout not out, but Australia reviewed and it was shown to be plumb in front.
Ollie Pope lasted only seven balls, edging to Steve Smith at slip off Starc, out for four to go with his disappointing first innings’ five.
But Jos Buttler (26) and Chris Woakes (44) dug in, frustrating Australia in a 61-run stand before Jhye Richardson clattered Woakes’ stumps.
“I wasn’t nervous. I think Jos played very well, and played over 200 balls, so it was good resistance along with Woakes and Robbo,” said interim Australian skipper Smith.
“We wanted to stay calm because we knew it would take a couple of good balls and a couple of wickets to get the win.
“I had fun this week, enjoyed it,” he added. “The guys played well, controlled the game from the first day.”