Australia headed to the Sydney Cricket Ground(SCG) for the 4th Test Match with a 3-0 lead and have retained the prestigious Ashes against England. The Day 1 was spoiled with rain as Australia reached 126/3 at the Stumps.
Australia building up slow and steady
Australia skipper Pat Cummins had won the toss and England were asked to bowl first in helpful overcast conditions at the SCG. Both teams have made one change to their playing from the Boxing Day Test, with Usman Khawaja replacing Travis Head for the hosts while Stuart Broad is back in the team for the Joe Root-led side.
Coming on to bat, David Warner and Marcus Harris put on a 51-run stand for the first wicket before Stuart Broad struck the breakthrough, removing Warner for the 13th time in Test cricket. Warner’s shot sent a thick edge to second slip. Rain then struck for the third time on the day shortly afterwards to halt the momentum created by Broad, and England which they had built up with a break of more than two hours.
Harris and Marnus Labuschagne, then, put up a gritty stand of 60 runs for the second wicket. Harris’ 109-ball innings came to an end courtsey of James Anderson, while Mark Wood dismissed Labuschagne (28) soon after as England made a comeback in the game.
After a fruitless start to the final session, James Anderson and Mark Wood struck twice in the space of eight balls to keep the hosts in check on an evenly balanced opening day that was finally ended by the fourth and final rain interruption 37 minutes before the scheduled close.
Both the teams will be hopeful of having decent weather on Day 2 as the opening day’s play curtailed to only 46.5 overs from the stipulated 90.