Ashes 2019: Woakes-led revival steers England to lead of 90

By Sports Desk August 03, 2019

Chris Woakes steered England to a lead of 90 in the first Ashes Test as Australia endured a frustrating second session on day three at Edgbaston.

The tourists appeared poised to restrict England to a small first-innings lead after an opening session in which Nathan Lyon spearheaded an Australia revival.

England led by only 44 at that stage but Woakes (37 not out), aided by 29 from Stuart Broad and a brief but creditable show of defence from James Anderson, ensured the tail wagged and produced some very useful runs.

Their advantage and total of 374 all out is short of what may have been expected of England when they reached stumps at 267-4 on day two, but is enough to set up a difficult challenge for Australia in their efforts to give Joe Root's men an imposing fourth-innings chase.

Woakes and Broad were Australia's undoing in their first innings and the pair that will carry the bulk of the burden with the ball grew in confidence with the bat as they put up a ninth-wicket partnership of 65.

That confidence was perhaps Broad's downfall as he attempted to flick a short ball from Pat Cummins to the fine leg boundary, only to be caught by James Pattinson.

Anderson, who did not return to the field after tea as he battles a calf injury and was replaced by sub fielder Sam Curran, did not prove a liability with the bat despite that problem, but England's innings ended as he made the mistake of trying to sweep Lyon.

He instead succeeded only in hitting him straight up in the air, with Cummins taking a comfortable catch to end an innings that once promised much more than it delivered.

 

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