Australia Five Down As They Battle To Save Test

Australia Five Down As They Battle To Save Test
Australia Five Down As They Battle To Save Test
©REUTERS/Mick Tsikas (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

Australia 245 & 238-4 (Clarke 80) v
England 620-5 dec. (Pietersen 227)
Second Ashes Test, Adelaide, day four

England will take a lead of 137 into the final day of the second Ashes Test match in Adelaide after they reduced Australia to 238 for four in their second innings.

Michael Clarke fell for 80 from the last ball before stumps on day four, which opened with England batting on and eventually declaring on 620 for five in their first innings.

Having been bowled out for 245 on the opening day of the match, Australia ceded a huge first-innings lead as Kevin Pietersen went on to make 227 while Ian Bell composed a fluent unbeaten 68 to put England well clear.

Australia then had to put in a vastly improved batting performance, and they did, with half-centuries from Clarke and Shane Watson (57) helping them begin to make inroads to England's lead.

With the pitch offering plenty of assistance to the spinners, Graeme Swann had Ricky Ponting caught by Paul Collingwood for nine and Simon Katich caught by Matthew Prior for 43.

The wicket of Clarke fell to Pietersen, who had him caught by Alastair Cook at short leg after the right-hander had made 80 in 139 balls with 11 fours.

Michael Hussey was unbeaten on 44 when rain caused an early stoppage, with an hour of play lost in the final session.

Earlier, Pietersen raced past his previous best Test score of 226 as England surprised some by continuing to bat but he went little further before he was caught at slip by Katich off Xavier Doherty as he pushed for quick runs.

Bell reached a 25th Test half-century, with eight fours and a six down the ground and the declaration came with Prior unbeaten on 27 in 21 balls.

Alastair Cook followed up his unbeaten 235 with 148 in England's first innings as the tourists also dominated days two and three.

The opening Test in Brisbane ended in a draw.

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