Media playback is not supported on this device
England showed “character” to fight back and put some pressure on Australia on the third day of the second Ashes Test, says all-rounder Chris Woakes. After being bowled out for 227, England reduced Australia to 53-4 in their second innings to trail by 268 runs. “We have fought back well and we can take positive stuff from that,” said Woakes, 28, who took two wickets.
“We’re behind in the game, but we bowled really well and have put pressure back on Australia.”Late wickets give England hope – day three report from Adelaide’Why didn’t England bowl like that on the first day?’ – Download the TMS podcastEngland gave up a first-innings deficit of 215 runs, but their bowlers excelled under the floodlights in Adelaide after Australia declined to enforce the follow-on. It was a vastly improved performance from the tourists, who were poor with the ball on day one following captain Joe Root’s decision to field first. “We knew we had to bowl a fuller length,” said Woakes. “We got it right tonight, pushed the ball up and got it moving around. We got the rewards.” The Warwickshire man was joined by James Anderson in taking two wickets and also made 36 with the bat earlier in the day. He shared a stand of 66 with debutant Craig Overton, who ended on 41 not out, to give England some respectability after they had slumped to 142-7. “Australia were clearly on top, so it was good to build a partnership with Craig,” said Woakes. “He batted beautifully. “We got plenty of verbals and plenty of short stuff. We applied ourselves pretty well. I was annoyed when I got out – I felt like I left a few runs out there.”
Although England had the better of the evening, they still face an enormous task to avoid going 2-0 down in the series. Victory in Adelaide for Australia, who won the first Test by 10 wickets, would mean they can regain the Ashes with victory in the third Test in Perth, where England have not won since 1978. “We still have a lead of 260 and there are two night sessions to go,” said Australia pace bowler Mitchell Starc. “The easiest time to bat is through the day, so we’ll look to get some runs then and build on our lead.” Ashes 2017-18 fixtures and resultsGet Ashes alerts sent to your phone