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Ashes 5, 2021-’22, Hobart: England fragile batting destroyed bowlers heartful job as Australia retain Ashes 4-0:

A Horrible Hobart Batting show by fragile English lineup gifted Australia their 4th Test win of the Ashes as they retain the urn 4-0.

Brief Scores:

Australia: 303 (T Head 101, C Green 74, S Broad 3-59) & 155 (A Carey 49, M Wood 6-37) beat England 188 (C Woakes 36, P Cummins 4-45, M Strac 3-53) & 124 (Z Crawley 36, S Boland 3-18, C Green 3-21) by 146-runs.

Man of the Match & Series: Travis Head (357-runs in 6-innings at an average of 59.50).

Twitter/ICC

It’s just like those old stories for England in an Ashes trip; just when they keep feet in any venue for last Test in Australia, it’s not only the fatigue of physical strength but also the mental stability.

But somehow the Sydney draw from the tourists did give them a lot of confidence whereas Australia would have the only goal to finish the series on a high note of 4-0. The next five days would change the whole English cricket a lot. That was going to be Hobart’s first Test in 6-years and maiden Ashes Test.

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Day 1: Yet Again England lost another opportunity to seize the game: It was a day/night test with clouds cover and totally green 22-yards; exactly what would England expect; the more they could want would be watching their captain Joe Root winning the toss and opting to bowl; every box sat in the puzzles.

The visitors made 5-changes with all the dropped players came back in the game while Sam Billings became England’s 700th Test player; however, Jimmy Anderson’s exclusion, not sure for any injury or not, did raise some eyebrows. The hosts although made a one change of bringing Travis Head by Promoting Usman Khawaja in the opening and leaving Marcus Harris.

The English new ball bowlers did make life hard for the Aussie openers reducing them 12-3 in the 10th over, with Warner & Smith getting ducks. That was their perfect chance to wrap up Australia. But they again slipped. Earlier dropped Marnus Labuschagne scored a quickfire 44 before being bowled by the funniest style. But the partnership of Travis Head and Cameron Green of 121 in just 160-balls almost kept England at bay.

The former of the combo went on to notch up his 2nd Ashes hundred in just 112-balls before being dismissed on 112. Green even though brought up a 50 failed to capitalize falling on 74. Rain showers finally ended the day’s play as Australia found themselves comfortable on 241-6.

Ollie Robinson who was on fire in the start of the Test had bowled just 8-overs out of 59 due to back spasm.

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Day 2: Scorecard may paint a different picture but again fragile batting keeps England way far:

England did take around an hour to bundle out the whole Australian team but not before watching opponent spinner Nathan Lyon smacking three huge sixes to the bouncers; as the hosts reached 303. Australia even after missing the chance of watching the ball taking edge or dropping few catches were able to pack up the tourists for 188. Rory Burns seemed to be doing some senseless job getting run-out and there was so much lack of partnership.

Sam Billings did look in bringing some new energy while Chris Woakes and Mark Wood hard hitting at the end took them over 150. Australian batter had the most tough job of facing the pacers under lights with the pink ball with a lead of 115-runs.

But just like the first innings, they failed again. David Warner went for a duck while Marnus Labuschagne dismissed to a leg-sided delivery for 5. Usman Khawaja too got out for 11 before Steve Smith and Scot Boland, the night-watchman saw off the last half an hour to take the home side in home.

Even though, it looked like England could make a comeback in the game with the opponents had a lead of 152-runs currently; but anything over that 300-mark on that track against the quality of Australian bowling to the damaged English batting; An Eden miracle type thing could see the visitors fly up with 3-1 score-line.

Day 3: Frustrated Fragile English batting finished England’s tour in familiar mode:

It was perhaps the right end of England’s tour of Australia in 2021-22. The tourist’s bowlers gave their all to bundle out for the rest of Australia for just 155 in 56.3-overs as Mark Wood stood out with 6-wicket; bowling with energy, enthusiasm and lost of power and character banging those bouncers in the pitch and getting the batters out pulled in the fine leg or caught behind in trying to save themselves.

Chasing a target of just 271, the English batters began the innings on a high note with 68 for no loss but since Rory Burns got out chopped on to his stumps, the rest fell like a pack of cards for losing all wickets in just 56-runs on the board. Ben Stokes played a careless pull shot while captain Joe Root had hardly anything to do with the ball that kept so low.

Australian bowlers as they had bowled though out the series, landed the cherry in the right area and the damaged batting line-up had hardly any answer of that. It also becomes the first match where Nathan Lyon didn’t bowl a single delivery in the entire Test going past his 4-balls in Cape Town 2011.

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Words from the players:

Joe Root (England, captain): It’s been a frustrating tour, tough tour for us. We have to keep learning to get better. Not go away from here and keep making the same mistakes. Not long before we play Test cricket again and an opportunity to turn things around. It’s pretty obvious we need to be putting more runs on the board. Too often we have not given our bowlers enough. We have been outplayed by Australia. Sometimes you have to put your hand up and say a team outplayed us. Who knows where we will be in four years’ time! It is a nice reward for Woody, he is someone who throws his every bit on every ball, every performance. Massive thank you for having us on this tour. It is a huge occasion, huge series, credit to the hospitality and congrats Australia.

Pat Cummins (Australia, captain): Really is (kind of dreams). Pretty crazy. To be at the end of a 5-match series with so many positives and 4-0, yeah really pumped. I am really happy as a captain, not sure if he (smiles, not having to bowl Lyon in the entire game). We have had some 15 players used in this series, some tough calls. Certainly, feels like we are on to something big. Cam Green with bat and ball has been outstanding. Scotty Boland was fantastic. And hope the old pros continue their good work. I am super excited for overseas Test cricket. One thing in the pandemic we haven’t done is not play too much of Test cricket. So, looking forward to adapt. Special thanks to ECB and Cricket Australia for putting this together in these times. Thanks for your (support) despite these tough times. We had an absolute ball.

Travis Head (Man of the match & series): Great to have an impact, I probably look at this one as better [when asked which was the better 100 in the series]. With the conditions and the team position, pretty special. I have worked on a lot of things over the last couple of years and did not take my opportunities earlier. Helps batting above two guys who average 60. The bench is also fantastic to have, everyone’s been in form, just showed our class, our squad is really strong at the moment. It is a nice Australian team to be in at the moment. It is tough and I can’t wait for tonight and I’m going to absolutely enjoy it.

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