Well, if England needed something positive in the series, they got plenty on day four at the Adelaide Oval.
First of all, Joe Root’s knock of 87 was a complete master class. Until the end of his innings which ended due to awkward bounce, he had all the bowlers in his control and no one of the Aussie bowlers could really trouble him.
Kevin Pietersen finally got into some touch as he scored 53 off 99 deliveries and gave England some breathing space.
On the other hand, debutant Ben Stokes was quiet with the bat as he hung on for quite some time for his 28 runs.
Another positive that England got out today was Matt Prior who finally looked to find some form and was 31* at stumps.
Earlier in the day, Michael Clarke declared the Australian innings without adding to their overnight score of 132/3. As soon as Mitchell Johnson got the ball, Alastair Cook was out straightaway as he tried to take on the fast bowler and as a result mistimed his hook shot.
Michael Carberry followed soon as he picked the fielder perfectly on a pull shot that actually was well-timed. Good times for England started afterwards as Root and KP together built a solid 111-run partnership that ended with Pietersen being bowled out for the ninth time to Peter Siddle.
Struggle began again as Ian Bell’s back was to be seen soon as Steven Smith got him while he tried to hit the ball over long-on.
Stokes built a partnership with Root afterwards but unfortunately, Root holed out this time to leave England reeling once again. Prior however steadied the English ship then with a good little partnership but Stokes’ concentration was soon destroyed by Johnson’s comments and he edged one straight to Clarke.
Stuart Broad then entered and received quite a warm welcome by the Adelaide crowd. Though Broad struggled in the early part of his innings, he started to look in good touch as close of play came near.
England now would be wishing that the expected rain dominates day five’s play because they need to play 90 more overs with just four wickets in hand and would also expect Prior and Broad to hang in for a long time.
If luck goes England’s way, it could well be a draw that could turn the series around.
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