Ashes 2023 4th Test: England were in complete control on Day 3 of the fourth Ashes Test, as they built a massive lead and reduced Australia to 113-4 in their second innings.
Jonny Bairstow came into the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford with a point to prove. He had been struggling with the bat in the series, averaging just 15.33, and had also been criticized for his glovework behind the stumps.
But Bairstow responded with a stunning innings of 99 not out, which helped England to a big first-innings lead. He was eventually stranded one run short of a century, but his knock was still one of the most impressive of the series.
Bairstow played with a sense of freedom and aggression, taking on the Australian bowlers from the outset. He hit 14 fours and three sixes, and his strike rate of 135.71 was the highest of any England batsman in the innings.
Bairstow’s innings was particularly impressive given the conditions. The Old Trafford pitch was offering plenty of seam movement, but Bairstow was able to find the gaps and punish the loose deliveries. He also showed great composure, particularly when he was on 98 and looking to get to his hundred.
After Bairstow’s dismissal, Mark Wood took three wickets to leave Australia reeling at 113-4. Wood was in great form, bowling with pace and accuracy. He dismissed Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, and Travis Head to put England in a commanding position.
Marnus Labuschagne and Mitchell Marsh were the only batsmen to offer any resistance for Australia, but they will need to do much more if they are to avoid defeat.
England will be hoping to wrap up the win on Day 4, and level the series at 2-2.
Key moments from Day 3
- Jonny Bairstow scores an unbeaten 99 to help England post 592 all out.
- Mark Wood takes three wickets to leave Australia reeling at 113-4.
- Marnus Labuschagne and Mitchell Marsh are the only batsmen to offer any resistance for Australia.
England will be hoping to wrap up the win on Day 4, and level the series at 2-2. Australia will need to bat much better if they are to avoid defeat.
The next day of play
The fourth day of the fourth Ashes Test will begin at 11:00am BST on Saturday, July 22.