England Regain The Ashes With 197-Run Win

England Win The Ashes With 197-Run Win
England Win The Ashes With 197-Run Win
©REUTERS/Toby Melville (BRITAIN SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

England 332 (Bell 72) & 373-9 dec. (Trott 119, Strauss 75) beat
Australia 160 & 348 (Hussey 121, Swann 4-120) by 197 runs
| TV Reaction
Fifth Ashes Test, The Oval, day four
John Pennington

England beat Australia by 197 runs to regain the Ashes, claiming the series 2-1 by bowling their oldest rivals out for 348 on day four of the fifth and final Test at The Oval.

Off-spinner Graeme Swann picked up four wickets and Steve Harmison three as despite Michael Hussey's century, England won the match with a day to spare.

Andrew Flintoff marked his final Test with a superb run out of Ricky Ponting which proved to be a crucial turning point in the game, Australia slumping from 217 for two to be all out for 348.

That run out came at a key time, Ponting (66) and Hussey (121) having put on 127 for the third wicket and captain Andrew Strauss seemingly struggling to find a breakthrough.

Both batsmen played beautifully but it took a moment of brilliance from Flintoff, who threw down the stumps from mid-on and it got better moments later when Michael Clarke was dismissed, also run out, for a duck. Strauss this time swooped from leg slip after the ball cannoned off of Alastair Cook's leg at short leg and the captain reacted quickest, hitting the wickets before Clarke could get back in his ground.

The day started perfectly for England with Simon Katich (43) and Shane Watson (40) being trapped in front by Swann and Broad respectively but Ponting and Hussey played as they could, and should have done in their first innings of 160 all out to repel England's charge until well into the afternoon.

Marcus North has had a fine series, but will be disappointed to have been stumped having failed to get his back foot back into the crease having missed a slog-sweep. Matthew Prior, another man to have enjoyed a fine series with bat and gloves, needed no second invitation to whip off the bails.

Hussey pressed on, reaching three figures for the first time in 28 innings as he alone seemed set to defy England, despite the enormity of Australia's task, having been set 546 to win the match.

Brad Haddin appeared to be warming up for the upcoming One-Day International series with a cameo of 34 in 49 balls before he sliced Swann into the air and Strauss took the catch.

Catching wasn't England's forte throughout the day, Paul Collingwood missing three chances at slip, one of which let Hussey escape on 55, and substitute Graham Onions shelled Haddin before he eventually fell.

In the end, however, it didn't matter, and the tail subsided quickly with Mitchell Johnson (0), Peter Siddle (10) and Stuart Clark (0) falling to Steve Harmison, who finished with three for 54 and he could have won the Ashes with a hat-trick but it wasn't to be.

That particular moment was Swann's, who finally induced an edge that was taken by Cook at short leg, Hussey the last man to fall to spark scenes of utter pandemonium as England celebrated the series win.

© Cricket World 2009