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England wins 3rd Ashes test by 8 wickets

Birmingham, England:  England won the third Ashes test by eight wickets with more than two days to spare at Edgbaston on Friday to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.England, chasing 121 to win,

India TV News Desk [ Published on: July 31, 2015 21:36 IST ]
england wins 3rd ashes test by 8 wickets
england wins 3rd ashes test by 8 wickets

Birmingham, England:  England won the third Ashes test by eight wickets with more than two days to spare at Edgbaston on Friday to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.

England, chasing 121 to win, finished on 124-2 in the middle session of the third day, propelled by Ian Bell's second half-century of the test.

Bell, promoted to No. 3 for the test, finished 65 not out, with Joe Root undefeated on 38.

Earlier, Australia was all out for 265 in its second innings just before lunch, with fast bowler Steven Finn taking 6-79 and the man of the match award in his first test in more than two years.

Peter Nevill and Mitchell Starc led Australia's late-order resistance on 59 and 58 respectively.

England's win in front of a raucous, national anthem-singing crowd of around 25,000 continued an unpredictable series. England won the first test in Cardiff in four days, lost the second at Lord's also in four days, followed by this even quicker three-day victory.

Australia's slim hopes of winning here were briefly raised in England's chase when captain Alastair Cook lasted only 12 balls, bowled for 7 by Mitchell Starc's delivery going from middle to off.

But Bell came in and quickly tamed Starc, at one point hitting four boundaries in seven balls from the seamer.

Bell and opener Adam Lyth had a 40-run second-wicket partnership off 42 balls, with 32 of those runs by Bell.

Mitchell Johnson came on in the ninth over but was unable to repeat his intimidating spell in the first innings when he claimed two quick wickets. He ended with 0-10 off seven overs.

At least Australia made a match of it after avoiding a two-day humiliation on a pitch where runs could be scored, as shown by Starc's 83-ball 50 with six fours and one six.

While Michael Clarke's captaincy was in debate, his poor run with the bat was extended — 10 and 3 here, 7 and 32 not out at Lord's. To compound his misery, he dropped Bell on 20 in the slips off Starc.

England's bowling attack received a huge boost and a serious blow at Edgbaston.

Finn made a successful return to test action with match figures of 8-117, not bad for someone famously deemed "unselectable" just 18 months ago after a loss of confidence.

But England also lost all-time leading wicket-taker James Anderson, who took 6-47 in Australia's first innings.

Anderson did not play on Friday, a day after straining his left side while bowling, and will miss the fourth test starting on Thursday at Trent Bridge.

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