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The Ashes: England fight back on second morning after Smith century


The Ashes: England fight back on second morning after Smith century


ustralia’s Steve Smith completed his 32nd century but England collected the remaining five wickets they needed to bowl the tourists out for 416 after 90 minutes of lively action on the second day of the second Ashes test at Lord’s on Thursday.

Australia resumed on 339 for 5 with Smith on 85 but quickly lost Alex Carey and Mitchell Starc to Stuart Broad and Jimmy Anderson as England’s seamers looked much more up for the battle after being criticised for a somewhat lethargic display on Wednesday.

However, Smith, who became the fourth Australian to pass 9,000 runs on Wednesday, pressed on in his usual relentless manner to remain a thorn in England’s side.

He brought up his 32nd Test 100 with a punchy cover drive but was out for 110 via a superb catch by Ben Duckett at second slip to give Josh Tongue his third wicket.

Captain Pat Cummins, who batted superbly to bring Australia home in the first Test, again looked assured to end unbeaten on 22, but Nathan Lyon, his impressive partner at Edgbaston, could not resist hooking a short ball despite a field set precisely for his mis-hit and was duly caught for seven.

A flying Joe Root slip catch to dismiss Josh Hazlewood off Ollie Robinson ended the innings, with Australia having added 77 in the session.

As they were seemingly cruising at 316 for 3 on Wednesday afternoon with England’s attack looking blunt, it represented a strong comeback for the hosts, started when Root snaffled two wickets late on the first day.

However, having lost the toss and been put in, the tourists will be delighted with their total.

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