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Saturday, November 23, 2013

England need 537 more to win after Clarke and Warner flog bowling: T1 D3

England 136 & 2/24 (15ov) need 537 runs with 8 2ndinns wickets in hand to defeat Australia 295 & 7/401dec (91ov, Warner 124/154b/1x6 13x4, Clarke 113/130b/1x6 9x4, Haddin 53/55b/5x4): T1/5 D3/5 at The Gabba Brisbane.

Michael Clarke's classy 113 put Stuart Broad the bowler back in his box while David Warner converted his previous day's good start to an authoritative century. They, with handy contributions from Brad Haddin, Mitchell Johnson and George Bailey, enabled Australia to declare with a massive lead and time to take two England wickets for a trifling 24. 

Three years ago at the Gabba, England made 1/517 in its second innings. It 's hard to see them coming close to that again unless Alistair Cook repeats his  2010 performance, or a frontline Australian bowler is incapacitated, or both. If the weather intervenes, as it did briefly today, and according to the forecast may do so again over the next two days, a draw is not out of the question. 

But so far Australia, having redeemed a first innings top order batting failure, and bowled with consistent hostility, are unquestionably are the better side.

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