Australia inch closer to Ashes victory after England suffer embarrassing collapse

AUSTRALIA are within reach of retaining the Ashes after England suffered an embarrassing batting collapse to be all our for 67 in the first innings of the third Ashes Test in Leeds.

Despite perfect sunny batting conditions, the wickets were quick to fall at Headingley on Friday.

Jason Roy was first to go for just nine runs after being caught in the slips by David Warner from a Josh Hazelwood delivery.


England skipper Joe Root was next to the crease but didn’t stay long, falling for another duck.

Joe Denly was the best performer for the home side with a measly 12 runs.

It’s England’s lowest Ashes score since 1948.

Hazelwood starred for the Aussies with the ball, snaring 5-30 to help put the visitors in the box seat to secure a 2-0 lead in the series.

“I can’t remember a day like this,” Hazlewood said.

“When you wake up and see the sunshine (compared to overcast skies on day one), usually in England you think it’s a great day for batting.

“The first hour was fantastic and we just kept building.

“Might be starting with a few scars there … I don’t think many teams are winning if one of their innings is 60 or 70 runs.”

Australia reached 6 for 171 at stumps on day two to lead by 283 runs.

England’s batting coach Graham Thorpe admitted it was not their best day but insists they are not out of it yet.

“We’re disappointed with the way in which we batted. It’s tough to take in the dressing room when it happens,” Thorpe said.

“At the end of the day they’re 283 ahead so what I would say is the game is not over from this position.

“If we can knock them over in the morning, I’ve seen Test cricket have some strange endings.”

“We’ve got to try to get those four wickets and if we can keep them to 320-330, a few of our lads can put their hand up and do something special.”