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Pat Cummins (centre) celebrates after taking the wicket of Joe Root - his second in two balls - at the end of day four

England suffer dramatic collapse late in the day to leave Australia on the brink of retaining the Ashes as Rory Burns and Joe Root both go for a duck after tourists set woeful hosts 383 to win fourth Test

  • Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow resumed at the crease with England 200-5, still needing 98 to avoid follow-on
  • Hosts posted first-innings total of 301, making Australia bat again, and went on to take four early wickets
  • Archer took three wickets, but that man Steve Smith (82) steadied the ship, before tourists declared on 186-6
  • England were set 383 to win, but both Rory Burns and Joe Root went for ducks in abysmal start at Old Trafford
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Rory Burns and Joe Root were both out for a duck to all-but end England’s chances of an unlikely fourth Test victory – leaving Australia on the brink of retaining the Ashes at Old Trafford.

The hosts just avoided the follow-on on day four, posting 301 in their first innings, before Jofra Archer provided a glimmer of hope with some early Australian wickets.

Steve Smith steadied the ship, though, posting 82 – before Australia declared on 186-6, leaving England with a target of 383 to win the fourth Test.

Pat Cummins (centre) celebrates after taking the wicket of Joe Root - his second in two balls - at the end of day four

Pat Cummins (centre) celebrates after taking the wicket of Joe Root – his second in two balls – at the end of day four

Rory Burns walks back to the pavilion at Old Trafford after getting out for a duck as England threw away two early wickets
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Rory Burns walks back to the pavilion at Old Trafford after getting out for a duck as England threw away two early wickets

Rory Burns walks back to the pavilion at Old Trafford after getting out for a duck as England threw away two early wickets

Joe Root's problems with the bat continued as he was clean bowled by Pat Cummins for a duck late on Saturday

Joe Root's problems with the bat continued as he was clean bowled by Pat Cummins for a duck late on Saturday

Joe Root’s problems with the bat continued as he was clean bowled by Pat Cummins for a duck late on Saturday

It started woefully for Joe Root’s men, as both the captain and Rory Burns both lost their wickets cheaply to leave England on 0-2 and on the brink of losing the Ashes.

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Rory Burns and Joe Denly steadied the ship in the final 20 minutes, but England will still need another Ben Stokes-like miracle to get anything from the Test on day five. 

England had started the day on 200-5 with Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes at the crease but after a positive start, Stokes was dismissed for 26 and England subsequently crumbled to 301 all out, leaving them 196 runs short of Australia’s first innings total. 

Ben Stokes lets out a cry of frustration after being dismissed for 26 on day four of the fourth Test at Old Trafford

Ben Stokes lets out a cry of frustration after being dismissed for 26 on day four of the fourth Test at Old Trafford

Ben Stokes lets out a cry of frustration after being dismissed for 26 on day four of the fourth Test at Old Trafford

Jonny Bairstow also went cheaply after a promising start as Mitchell Starc blitzed his stumps to leave England reeling

Jonny Bairstow also went cheaply after a promising start as Mitchell Starc blitzed his stumps to leave England reeling

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Jonny Bairstow also went cheaply after a promising start as Mitchell Starc blitzed his stumps to leave England reeling

Jack Leach was the last man standing for England yet again as he finished on four not out but this time there were no heroics

Jack Leach was the last man standing for England yet again as he finished on four not out but this time there were no heroics

Jack Leach was the last man standing for England yet again as he finished on four not out but this time there were no heroics

More to follow. 

 

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