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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Harris & Johnson put England out of misery and level series: T3D4

Australia 268 & 309 def England 187 & 123 (37ov. R Harris 6/47, M Johnson 3/44) by 267 runs: T3 D4 at WACA ground, Perth. 5 match series level 1 all.

It didn't take long for Ryan Harris and Mitchell Johnson to scythe through the 5 remaining England wickets, including those of Ian Bell and Matt Prior, and complete a comprehensive victory for Australia over England, one which looked unlikely after the first day.

Johnson was named Man of the Match for his 9 match wickets and team reviving first innings 62, but several others , especially Hussey and Harris in both innings, Shane Watson in the second and Brad Haddin in the first, made vital contributions which papered over the cracks in Australia's batting.

We'll wait to see whether the crack in Ricky Ponting's little finger prevents him from playing in Melbourne. Even though he's not delivered when it matters and age is creeping up on him (the win is a great present for his 36th birhtday today) IMO he is still capable of making runs and moreover is due for some after an unlucky dismissal in the second innings (and he was out to a great catch in the first).

England don't seem to have as many problems, though it's doubtful whether their team structure with only four frontline bowlers will suffice to dismiss Australia twice more for low-to-middling scores
if, as must surely happen, more than two of its top order batters fire.

variable unknown factor will be the MCG wicket. Will it play more like the relatively (pace) bowler friendly Perth than Adelaide or the Gabba, or will it be its own thing? These and other matters will be the subject of much speculation over the next week.

Scorecard .

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