Ashes: Australia beat England by 120 runs

Josh Hazlewood removes Joe Root

Josh Hazlewood removed Chris Woakes and Joe Root in his first two overs of the day

England’s fightback in the second Test ultimately came to nothing as Australia powered to a 120-run win in Adelaide and a 2-0 Ashes lead.

Beginning the final day on 176-4 in pursuit of 354, the tourists lost Chris Woakes to the second ball and Joe Root two overs later, both to Josh Hazlewood.

If Root’s departure all but confirmed England’s fate, Moeen Ali fell six overs later to make the rest little more than a formality.

Jonny Bairstow gamely resisted for 36, but Mitchell Starc ruthlessly wrapped it up with the second new ball to finish with 5-88.

England lost six wickets in the first session and were bowled out for 233 shortly before tea.

The hosts will regain the Ashes if they win the third Test in Perth, which begins on 14 December.

England have not won at the Waca since 1978 and must reverse an awful run in Australia – they have now lost seven consecutive Tests down under – to have any chance of retaining the urn.

Root’s men only need a draw to keep the Ashes, but England have never come from 2-0 down to draw or win a series against Australia.

England’s fight too little, too late

It is deflating for England that they failed on the final day but the truth is that they lost this match, the first day-night Test in Ashes history, in the first half.

After winning the toss and putting Australia in, poor bowling allowed the home side to rack up 442-8 declared.

The tourists were reduced to 142-7 before the fightback began.

Woakes and Craig Overton dragged them past 200 and, when Australia opted against enforcing the follow-on, England utilised the pink ball under lights to set the home side on the way to being 138 all out.

Faced with completing their highest successful run-chase and looking to win after conceding a first-innings deficit in excess of 200 for the first time since Ian Botham’s heroics at Headingley in 1981, England gave themselves a chance with a battling batting display on the fourth evening.

Australia extinguish England hope

With a potentially historic fifth day in the offing and the warmest conditions of the match to enjoy, plenty of spectators made the gold coin donation to enter the Adelaide Oval.

The Barmy Army were singing before play began but, if Woakes’ dismissal gave Australia an ideal start, Root’s departure was a mortal blow.

With the result all but assured, Starc needed only 14 deliveries with the second new ball to take the final three wickets for 13 runs.

England can take heart from the punches they landed on Australia – at times home captain Steve Smith was rattled, their bowlers were magnificent in the second innings and some of their batsmen showed they can stand up to the hosts’ attack.

Still, the truth is that England’s highest total in four attempts in this series is 302 and Australia have followed up a 10-wicket win in Brisbane with another resounding victory.

That the next destination is Perth, an Australian Ashes fortress, could well mean that England’s time holding the urn is running out.

Hazlewood & Starc lead rejuvenated Australia

Before the final day, Australia had been on the back foot for the majority of the previous four sessions.

On Tuesday evening, frustration was visible, catches went down and the wasting of both reviews in the space of three deliveries led to loud taunting from the travelling fans.

Smith’s men returned refreshed on Wednesday and pace bowler Hazlewood all but guaranteed the outcome of the match with his first 11 deliveries of the day.

First he found movement back in to Woakes, who reviewed being given out caught behind and shook his head when the third umpire detected the finest of edges.

Root, so brave in reaching 67 the previous night, fell in similar fashion in Hazlewood’s next over without adding to his score. He knew a review could not save him and dragged himself from the field.

From there, it was little more than a formality.

Moeen was lbw sweeping Nathan Lyon – in all four innings in the series Lyon has dismissed fellow off-spinner Moeen.

Jonny Bairstow and Overton, dropped at a short third slip by Cameron Bancroft off Pat Cummins, resisted for nine overs, but Overton was pinned leg before from Starc’s first delivery with the second new ball.

In Starc’s next over, Stuart Broad edged to wicketkeeper Tim Paine before Bairstow played on.

Jonny Bairstow is bowled<!–

Jonny Bairstow made 36 off 57 balls

Ashes: Australia beat England by 120 runs

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