Labuschagne century provides Australia hope in Manchester

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A Marnus Labuschagne century and Mitch Marsh’s defence has given Australia hope of holding on to attract the fourth Check and retain the Ashes, after a rain-marred day 4 in Manchester.

After the primary half of the day was washed away by rain, Australia fought to be 5-214 of their second innings when dangerous climate ended play at tea on Saturday.

The vacationers nonetheless want 61 extra runs to make England bat once more, however rain is forecast once more for Sunday with a climate alert despatched out by native authorities.

And after Australia batted for 135 minutes on Saturday for the lack of just one wicket, the scenario is now not so dire for Australia.

Labuschagne did fall for 111 simply earlier than tea, caught behind making an attempt to chop Joe Root whereas England had been restricted to bowling spin at a dark Outdated Trafford.

Cameron Inexperienced then survived an opportunity later in the identical over when he was put down by Harry Brook, low to the bottom, at brief leg.

And whereas England are nonetheless firmly on prime, Australia would nonetheless have seemingly taken this place firstly of the day.

After resuming at 4-113, Labuschagne and Marsh batted by way of the vast majority of Saturday’s play in a 103-run fifth-wicket stand.

Labuschagne had been close to chanceless till he entered the 90s, working the ball sq. of the wicket and utilizing his toes to hit Root for 2 massive sixes over mid on.

The century was Labuschagne’s first in 23 innings and solely his second away from residence, after enduring a irritating tour of a number of wasted begins in England.

Nonetheless, the No.3 would nonetheless have been disillusioned with the way in which he was caught behind off Root, given it was a ball huge exterior off that spun again at him.

Marsh barely provided a chance to England in an unbeaten 31.

After holding his spot within the crew with a run-a-ball 118 at Headingley a fortnight in the past, the hard-hitting West Australian confirmed he had one other gear on Saturday.

He soaked up 107 balls in his innings, solely trying a giant shot when Moeen Ali over-pitched with a full toss on off stump.

Australia want to attract the match to make sure they keep the Ashes as present holders — they’ve a 2-1 lead within the sequence with another Check to play.

Nonetheless, a win for England would make imply an Ashes sequence goes to a fifth and deciding Check at 2-2 for the primary time since 1936-37.

-AAP


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