Australia Regain Ashes Despite Stokes Ton
Ben Stokes' fine maiden Test century was nowhere near enough to prevent Australia from moving into an unassailable 3-0 series lead over England and regaining The Ashes with a 150-run win in Perth.
Stokes struck 120 before Australia emulated the team of 2006/7 by winning the first three Tests in the series, bowling England out for 353.
England added 102 runs on the final day after being set a highly unlikely 504 to win. Mitchell Johnson finished with four wickets and Nathan Lyon three to cap a dominant Australian performance.
Stokes did at least give England something to cheer as in their sixth innings of the tour, he was the first of their batsman to pass three figures, a situation that tells you plenty about why Australia are currently so far ahead.
England resumed with Stokes on 72 and he continued to make steady progress alongside Matthew Prior (26). The pair almost pushed England on to 300 before Prior drove at Johnson and edged through to Brad Haddin.
Stokes reached his century in 159 balls, going on to hit 18 fours and a six in all before he tried to sweep Lyon only to get an edge to Haddin.
Tim Bresnan hung around for 40 balls in making 12 and it took an excellent catch from Chris Rogers off Johnson to remove him after Graeme Swann (4) was caught at bat-pad by first-innings centurion Smith as Lyon grabbed his third wicket.
Stuart Broad bravely came out to bat at number 10 battling the pain inflicted by a Johnson yorker in the first innings and made a couple of runs but soon enough Australia finished the job when James Anderson (2) fended Johnson to Bailey at short leg.
Johnson returned figures of four for 78, Lyon three 70 while there was a wicket apiece for Ryan Harris, Peter Siddle and Shane Watson.
Australia have not held The Ashes since England regained them in 2009, going on to win 3-1 in 2010/11 and 3-0 earlier in the year.
Although that scoreline flattered England, few would have expected the fightback from Australia to have been so quick and so comprehensive.
The fourth Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground begins on 26th December.
© Cricket World 2013