England’s batsmen gained some valuable time at the crease in Perth as they closed on 270/2 against the Western Australia Chairman’s XI.
Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott remain at the crease overnight having both past 50 in reply to the hosts 451-5 declared. The Australians continued to bat in the morning as their batsmen kept racking up the milestones as the top six all reached the half century landmark.
Some disappointing bowling figures for the English was the outcome as the bowlers failed to impress in an important opportunity to give them an advantage with one place up for grabs for the first Test in Brisbane.
With James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann certainties to play at The Gabba one of Steven Finn, Chris Tremlett and Boyd Rankin will also play. Finn returned figures of 1-123, Tremlett 0-88 while the uncapped Rankin ended with 1-92 before Michael Carberry and Joe Root opened for the tourists.
Both batsmen started in positive fashion until Root became the first batsman of the game to be dismissed for under 50 after Jim Allenby had him lbw for 36. Hampshire star Carberry flew past his half century and was seemingly poised to reach three figures until he slapped spinner Ashton Turner to Allenby at point when he was on 78.
That brought 2013 Ashes Man of the Series Ian Bell to the crease and with an expectant crowd he didn’t disappoint as he smashed two maximums and 11 boundaries on his way to close on 77* off 137 balls.
Bell joined Trott at the crease and with an important series ahead the number three batsman seemed composed at the crease on his way to 64* from 135 balls which included eight boundaries.
The Warwickshire pair have so far put on 133 for the third wicket with Yorkshire batsman Gary Ballance next to the middle before Ben Stokes will be looking to prove his worth with the bat in his all-round role at number six.
England will continue to bat tomorrow with it being the last day of the match and no realistic result other than a draw possible before they fly to Tasmania for the four day tour game against Australia A in Hobart.