Live: Day three, 5th Ashes Test, Sydney

Australia whoops it up after the 5-0 series win.
Australia whoops it up after the 5-0 series win. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Day Three Recap ... Five-nil, baby!


Upper hand: Gee, I wonder? Seriously, this has been one of the great demolition jobs Test cricket has seen, the results victories to Australia by 381 runs, 218 runs, 150 runs, eight wickets and now 281 runs. Doesn't get a lot more comprehensive, and today was just typical, Australia knocking up the runs at will early, then rolling England again for precious little. The session post-tea was nothing short of an embarrassment for the previous title-holders, who lost their last seven wickets for just 79 runs in under and hour! Ridiculous stuff, but pretty symptomatic of the summer.

The key man: Could have been a number of them, but on the final day, it had to be Ryan Harris, who got the big scalps Bell and Pietersen, then the only plus of this summer for England, Ben Stokes, and finished with a magnificent 5/25 in less than 10 overs. Deservedly, he won man of the match.

Big moment: An unbelievable first 15 minutes after the tea break saw four wickets fall in just 12 deliveries, two to Johnson in the first over, and two to Lyon in the second. Carberry started the slide, flashing at the second ball after the resumption. Ballance fell three balls later, plumb LBW, then it was the spinner's turn, Bairstow out to his fourth ball, and Borthwick from the last. In two overs, England had slumped from 3/87 to 7/97, and what was already going to be a massive loss became complete humiliation.

It all could have changed if ... England could wind back the clock a few months, and perhaps try to be a little more enterprising during its home series win. Negative tactics and dusty pitches worked well enough then, but there was dourness and lack of inspiration about their play even then, which left them with, save for the revelation of Ben Stokes, precious little to call upon when Australia first threatened to disrupt the status quo in Brisbane.

Things went swimmingly for ... Michael Clarke. The skipper didn't have to do much on the last day of this series, but as usual, his bowling changes were spot-on, and he also took a couple of great catches, including, fittingly, the final wicket of Boyd Rankin to officially post that 5-0 scoreline in the record books. There were many doubters when "Pup" assumed the captaincy from Ricky Ponting. There can be none left now, surely. His appointment has been inspired.

Not so swimmingly for ... Alastair Cook. The English skipper has presided over only the third 5-0 Ashes whitewash in history, his defensive captaincy has copped a critical hammering, and the English media will be after blood after an embarrassing couple of months for English cricket.

What does it all mean?: Australia can't afford to celebrate too long and hard with a tour to South Africa looming which will prove a far bigger test than this cakewalk did. That said, the results this summer have exceeded anyone's expectations, so anyone believing Australia is going to be in for a rude awakening is perhaps underestimating the talent and spirit of this unit under the guidance of coach Darren Lehmann. England? Well, it's all gone to pot far too quickly, with Graeme Swann already gone, perhaps a few others set to follow his lead, and the time for a rebuild certainly right now.

And that's just about it from Rohan Connolly here at blog central. Thanks for your company these past couple of months, it's been an absolute pleasure bringing you all the live action and interacting with you all in the comments section. Been some summer for an Australian cricket fan, even Sandeep, our resident troll, seemed to have given up baiting by the end! Seriously, though, a lot of fun. Hope you all enjoyed it, and stay with our live coverage of the Big Bash League and the one-day internationals, too. Me? I'm off for a bit of a spell before the AFL season starts, so see you then. Cheers, everyone. And just one last thing ... Australia, Australia, Australia, you ...... beauty!!



And man of the match goes to Ryan Harris, a superb effort with the ball today 5/25 in under 10 overs and finished with eight for the match and 22 wickets for the series. Man of the series? .... Clearly, it's going to be between Mitch Johnson and Brad Haddin. And it goes to ... Johnson! Fair enough, his intimidating bowling cast a new complexion over this team and this series, he took 37 wickets and just 14 and his redemption is one of the great cricket stories of recent times!

Hang around for a while yet, everyone. Still got the man of the match and series awards to be presented, and we'll have our post-game summary coming up soon!


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WICKET! AUSTRALIA WINS 5-0!! Rankin lasted two balls, flashes at Harris and fittingly, skipper Clarke takes the catch head-high at second slip. What an absolute shellacking! Australia wins by 281 runs with more than two days left to play!


WICKET! One to go! Broad charges Harris again and loses his leg stump! Well, it was good to watch while it lasted!

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Six more for Broad! That's his fourth! Has 42 of 35 balls!

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Another six to Broad! Lofts Lyon over deep mid-on and he's up to 27, two sixes and three fours. Hang on, he does it again! Same spot, same result. Clarke might have to give Lyon a breather here, his figures are copping a hammering!

Another brute of a ball from Harris, Broad can only fend at it, flies up in the air off the splice and just over the head of Warner at gully. Didn't know much about that one, Stuart!

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Harris has 3/13 in his ninth over! Jimmy Anderson on strike now, could be all over in about five minutes after England were three-for just 45 minutes ago!


WICKET! Stokes gone. First ball to Harris sees him charge down the track, gets an inside edge and it cannons on to the pegs. Entertaining little cameo of 32, but the end is nigh now!

Ryan Harris bowls Ben Stokes.
Ryan Harris bowls Ben Stokes. Photo: Brendan Esposito
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Another six! This one to Broad, gets front foot down the tracks and tees off over mid-wicket. Lyon's gone for 32 from his last two overs! And now Harris is coming on for Johnson.

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Stokes is going to go for it now. Clouts Lyon for a four then, a six over long-off, then another four! Fourteen from three balls. And two balls later, another six! Twenty off the over, and he's already 27.

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My god ... runs! Broad sweeps Lyon through mid-wicket for four, and the 100 comes up! Only another 347 runs to get!

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Think the former England skipper sums it up pretty nicely ...

Well, hard to believe what's hapened in just 15 minutes since tea! Almost like England has re-scheduled its flights home or something! Just coming apart at the seams here, 4/9 since the break in two overs! Hope no-one's carrying tickets for day four ... there ain't going to be one!


WICKET! AGAIN! This is unbelievable! Borthwick's gone second ball, hit the first for four, but he edges the second to slip, Clarke dives to his left and picks it up brilliantly just above the turf! Make that FOUR wickets in TWELVE balls since the break!

Michael Clarke is in demand after a one-handed catch to get rid of Scott Borthwick.
Michael Clarke is in demand after a one-handed catch to get rid of Scott Borthwick. Photo: Brendan Esposito

WICKET! And there's another one! Bairstow stretches forward to Lyon, inside edge on to the pad, and Bailey pockets the catch at short-leg. Three wickets in 10 balls since tea!

Catcher George Bailey and his teammates head for bowler Nathan Lyon after the wicket of Jonny Bairstow.
Catcher George Bailey and his teammates head for bowler Nathan Lyon after the wicket of Jonny Bairstow. Photo: Getty Images

Lyon's coming from the other end, new man Bairstow on strike ... hang on, they're both new men! Stokes on four. Boy, Australia has taken some clusters of wickets this series!

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