Perth Test – Day 4: The Return of the Urn

Australia 385 & 6/369 dec. (SR Watson 103) v England 251 & 5/251 (BA Stokes 72*, IR Bell 60)

Stumps Day 4

Australians all let us rejoice, the urn is coming back. An at times frantic Day 4 saw the home team bully England before the tourists batting lineup finally showed some steel late in the day.

Starting Day 4 on 3/235, an overall lead of 369, Australia needed quick runs. SR Watson, resuming on 29, just needed runs. Watto delivered for both himself and his country with his 4th Test century, belting the ball in the way we are normally accustomed to seeing him belt a white ball. Watson was particularly severe on the bowling of Graeme Swann, smashing 37 off the 13 balls he faced from the English off-spinner. But there was some typical Watto moments in his 103 off 108 balls, being caught at long-off by Tim Bresnan who then tumbled over the boundary, and his dismissal, where he was dropped by Ian Bell after a typical ugly Watto get out shot before being run out by the luckless Bresnan while dawdling down the wicket and cursing himself for his bad shot. Classic Watto. The hitting continued with an assault on the bowling of Jimmy Anderson by George Bailey who hit 28 off the Lancastrian’s over, equalling the world record for runs in an over (held by Brian Lara), and taking the lead to over 500 with his third straight six of the over that brought an immediate declaration from his skipper. Bailey, who also had been dropped earlier, finished with an unbeaten 39 off 30 balls. Some wonderful hitting by Watson and Bailey but both still have plenty of questions to answer in their Test careers. Runs in Johannesburg and Cape Town in February will be far more valuable for this pair.

If England weren’t mentally shot after that onslaught, seeing their captain lose his off stump first ball of the innings would have totally deflated them. A great ball from Harris that pitched middle and hit the top of off but a ball that the 2010/11 Alistair Cook would have easily defended. Like his mates Anderson and Swann, the series can’t finish soon enough for the out of sorts England captain. All 5 of the Aussie bowlers took a wicket each as they all toiled hard but the Perth heat and back to back Tests are starting to take it’s toll. KP was batting well and had the attack at his mercy before throwing his wicket away, being well caught on the boundary by Ryan Harris from the bowling of Nathan Lyon. Ian Bell played well for his 60 trying to ramp the ball over slip one too many times. Most impressive for the Poms was young all-rounder Ben Stokes, who will resume on Day 5 unbeaten on 72. Stokes drove and pulled the ball well, appears to have plenty of time while batting and when you factor in his very good bowling, where he has been clocked consistently as England’s fastest bowler in this game, the tourists look to have a fantastic long term player.

5 wickets to go, once the Stokes/Prior partnership is broken it should be a quick finish given the English tail’s form so far in this series. No doubt Boof will have the beers on ice, Harris, Siddle and Johnson will look forward to being put on ice until Boxing Day and hopefully Pup spends a long night in the changerooms. Bring on Day 5, time to return the urn!

About Luke Reynolds

Cricket and Collingwood tragic. Twitter: @crackers134


  1. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Precise and accurate as usual Luke and surely we as almanac reporters have had more influence on this sees than Collingwood did when he got OBE how bout
    anti OBEs for us am writing this just before play starts day , 5 still nervous and don’t worry the great man , Boof will have plenty of beer on ice !

  2. Its lunch here in Perth on Day 5. If you have gone the ‘early crow’ it will be the Otway Oracle for you, young Luke.
    Very thorough review of play Funky, after your mate Faded went all creative on us. I guess there has to be a straight bat at the other end for the dashers.
    Reckon you are a bit hard on A Cook. He has got 2 jaffas in Adelaide and here that would have got 99% of lefties. Ball swinging toward leg, then straightening back the other way off the pitch. Totally squared him up and had him playing down the wrong line.
    Thanks Luke.

  3. Luke Reynolds says

    Cheers Malcolm.

    Peter, still very confident of the win. If England win not sure even the Otway Oracle would have me. Loved Faded’s work today. Much more creative than me, just happy to be an accompliament to his great work.

  4. Luke Reynolds says

    Even more confident now. What a great knock from Stokes that was.

  5. Luke

    I’ll be Greg Matthews to your Alan Border, Colin Miller to your Shane Warne. Entertainment value mate. I’m good for a good time not a long time, yours is actual cricket stuff!

    Good partnership.

    Agree, Stokes a coming of age innings, credit where it’s due, tough pitch, bowlers wanting your blood, well done kid


  6. Malcolm Ashwood says

    Great Partnership you ,2 and COCKO THE ASHES ARE HOME

  7. Great stuff again, Luke.
    How grand it must have felt to type that title, given all the early queries over selection and scheduling. Imagine what we could have done with a decent preparation…
    And yes, well played B Stokes.
    And a red head in that Perth heatwave. Impressive.

  8. Andrew Starkie says

    Great day. Bloody nervous at Lunch. Very relieved now.

    Ashes have come home.

  9. Luke Reynolds says

    Sean- Happy to be AB to your Mo Matthews! Stokes’ knock was something very special.

    Malcolm- What a beautiful thing to have the Ashes back. I’m sure the Terrorist would be happy.

    Cheers E.regnans. Claiming victory after Day 4 of the 3rd Test was superb. Still find it hard to believe we are in this position.

    Andrew-Was always confident, even though we only took one wicket in the first session. Stokes will be some player.

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