England vs Australia – Ashes RECAP: Scorecard and updates on Day One

England vs Australia – Ashes RECAP: Scorecard and updates on Day One

July 27, 2023

England vs Australia – Ashes RECAP: Late flourish from Chris Woakes helps drag hosts to 283 all out

Follow Mail Sport’s live blog for Day One of the fifth Ashes Test between England and Australia at Old Trafford.

Host commentator

Host commentator

Thanks for joining us throughout today as England and Australia went to battle on Day One of the fifth Test at the Oval. 

We’ll be back tomorrow with all the action and make sure to take a look around the rest of Mail Online for expert reaction from today.

The first day at The Oval is over, and it ends with Australia trailing by 222 after picking up four runs in that final over of the day.

They will have a tally of 283 to surpass tomorrow. Australia dropped five catches today yet they will still be feeling positive about how the day has gone. 

We should be in store for another belting day at the Oval tomorrow. 

Anderson gets Khawaja to edge short of third slip and then appeals for lbw after striking the left-hander. It’s a second maiden for Anderson. 

Broad leaps up to try and make the catch as his bowl is batted over his head by Labuschagne but he can’t quite get there so the Aussie gets a single. 

Khawaja also gets a single as they move to 57-1 and trail by 226. Hopefully get two more overs out of this. 


Khawaja crashes through cover for four while Labuschagne is off the mark on 12th delivery as he nudges a single behind square for a much more successful over than their last couple. 

Broad returns to the attack, too, in place of Woakes. 

Broad floats one up and Khawaja has a go at the drive but misses. 

Australia have scored one run in five overs. 

Anderson will be hoping for a more successful second stint after struggling in his four-over first spell. 

Australia still on 50-1 and Lasbuschagne still on 0. 

Another maiden by Woakes.

With not long to go Australia are probably padding up a nightwatchman – possibly Todd Murphy.

Time for a change at the other end as Jimmy Anderson is going to replace Mark Wood. 

There’s just about 30 minutes left in the day can England find another wicket or two to finish the day off strong? 

Labuschagne comes into this game off the back of a fifty and a century at Emirates Old Trafford last time out. 

The visitors trail by 233

Finally for England!

There won’t be a fifty stand for Warner and Khawaja as the former falls one shy of that mark. There is a big edge towards the cordon and Crawley leaps across Root at first to make the catch. 

A crucial breakthrough for England.

The crowd spotting England’s need to get a wicket try and gee up Wood as they hunt for their first breakthrough.

He gets over 90mph on the first ball and Warner gets a single for the over’s sole run. 

Wood has a conversation with Stokes at the end of the over – maybe a change coming soon?

Brilliant from Khawaja as he eases Woakes’ delivery between the non-striker’s stumps and batting partner Warner for four. 

England could do with a wicket as Australia have been very comfortable. 

How has this not carried?

Edger from Warner and it looks Bairstow will make the catch but he can’t quite get a grasp of it as it falls short and Warner survives.

Frustration for England who are still searching for the first wicket. 

Woakes starts with a maiden after the drinks interval. 

It’s been some fine batting from Khawaja and Warner so far with Australia now 42 not out.

Warner works Wood into the covers off the back foot and he follows off a single with a two-run haul.

Khawaja also picks up a single off Wood and that’s the final one before we’re off for drinks. 

Australia definitely on top now. 

Double bowling change for England with Woakes also on for Broad. 

Warner drills Woakes’ first ball for four despite the best efforts of the diving extra-cover fielder Stokes.

There’s a huge roar as Wood replaces England’s all-time leading wicket-taker. Wood will definitely up the tempo. 

He operates in the 80s at the start of his over with Khawaja adding two to their tally. 

They currently trail by 250. 

Just a single from Stuart Broad’s latest over. Mark Wood is on for James Anderson. 

Anderson bowls on Khawaja’s pads and it’s clipped away for four. Not working for Anderson at the moment who is struggling with his line and he switches to around the wicket for the remainder of the over.

Stokes reviews for Warner caught behind off Broad but is not successful! It was a great ball but the noise was arm not bat. Broad will have to wait for his 18th dismissal of Warner in Ashes cricket.  

Warner faces Anderson for the first time today and clatters it through cover point to move into double figures. 

Anderson then hones in more on the stumps but Warner and Khawaja are equal to it.

Warner tucks Broad off his pads and through square leg for two.

A sharp single keeps him on strike. 

Anderson twice finds some movement to beat Khawaja but neither are close to finding the outside edge. 

A full straight ball comes from Anderson though with Khawaja drilling it for a four. Solid start to the innings from the Aussies. 

Broad versus Warner resumes for what is likely to be the penultimate time in the Ashes. 

This rivalry has been famous over the years and Warner is given a break as four byes are given down leg-side.

He plays the exact same shot on the next delivery but doesn’t time it right and edges off the face of the bat that Bairstow should probably have taken but can’t get more than his fingertips too.

Jimmy Anderson attacks from the other end and looks to mix his deliveries up, initially trying to come across the stumps to Khawaja’s off-side before chucking a ball down leg-side that almost gets a snick on its way through.

Khawaja clips to mid-off at the end of the over to add two more runs. Meanwhile we can tell you Moeen Ali will play no further part today after injuring his groin while batting.

Broad screams for LBW off his first ball but England don’t challenge as the ball was heading down leg-side and looks to have taken an edge on its way through as well.

The Englishman is already getting movement on the ball and Khawaja looks a bit confused in the crease as he struggles to get bat on ball before finally managing a block on the fifth ball.

Khawaja gets off the mark with a single on the final ball but conditions look favourable for bowlers.

That was a quick change and England are in a rush to get back out with Stuart Broad given the ball for the first over.

That’s it for England’s batsmen on Day One at the Oval as Woakes walks to bring an end to their first innings at the crease.

A mixed day for Ben Stokes’ side with England starting well, surviving after losing Joe Root before Moeen Ali and Harry Brook combined really well to solidify England’s position of control before lunch.

It all went wrong for England after the break with Stokes and Bairstow quickly given their marching orders thanks to some brilliant bowling that was aided by poor decision-making.

Chris Woakes and Mark Wood helped claw England to 283 after a late boundary-hitting flurry.

Woakes started the over by smashing Starc for six runs back over the bowler’s head and followed that up with a delightful cut shot through point for four more runs. 

He perhaps gets slightly carried away trying to pull very similarly to how Broad did and sends his effort up high for Head to catch easily.

Murphy is allowed to continue his spell and would love a third wicket on Day One at the Oval.

It’s neat and tidy bowling that doesn’t give either batter much to work with despite Woakes wanting to score.

Murphy had an easy catch to finish England off on his final delivery as Woakes hit the ball straight back down the wicket. Five drops in one day for Australia!

Broad walks an over after Wood did and that calls Jimmy Anderson to come to the crease. England’s record wicket taker doesn’t like bowling at the best of times and would definitely prefer to have ball in hand under these conditions.

Anderson survives an LBW review thanks to the decision being umpires call after eventually deciding not out and Woakes rounds out the over by adding another two runs.

Broad found a boundary in his brief spell and tries to find another with a pull shot but mistimes his effort and it’s straight up in the air with Travis Head given ages to position himself and take the catch comfortably.

Woakes survived the previous over but Wood is gone this one in almost identical fashion to Ali earlier in the day as Murphy claims his second wicket.

The Australian spinner lobs a straight delivery down the wicket that Wood misses as the ball clatters into middle stump.

Woakes rubs salt into Starc’s wounds, surviving his LBW call thanks to a review before being smashed to the boundary in quick succession.

Good fielding for the rest of the over prevents any further big scores, but Wood and Woakes are batting really well at the death.

Woakes has survived after reviewing an LBW that was originally given out after Starc’s delivery clattered into his leading pad. Ultraedge comes to the rescue and shows the ball bat first.

That over brings up tea with Woods and Woakes staying at the crease longer than what Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, or Joe Root have managed today.

A post-lunch collapse summarised by England losing the cheap wickets of Stokes and Bairstow placed huge pressure on the young shoulders of Harry Brook who fell 15 runs short of his century.

Wood and Woakes have steadied the ship with neither unafraid to showcase their batting capabilities and Australia now find themselves in a tricky position.

They will try to bowl England’s tail order out but must also be fearful of batting under the lights given the conditions are definitely favouring bowlers.

Good decision from Cummins to put his spinner in just before tea as Wood and Woakes combine for just two runs off the over. 

Murphy snatched the wicket of Ali earlier and is getting even more turn as the pitch begins to rough up as we prepare to head into the evening session.

England’s useful partnership continues to build as the players head off for a break.

Wood tries to smash Cummins back own the ground but mistimes his effort and there is a chance for a catch only for the ball to land in an area where there wasn’t any fielder.

Two more singles are added and Wood continues to impress as Cummins pitches a ball up outside off-stump and is drilled for four runs by Wood.

The England batter tries the same again on the final ball but plays a big swing and a miss.

Some good batting on display as Woakes finds a boundary and Wood is prevented from adding four more runs by some impressive fielding from Hazlewood.

Wood’s clip into leg-side races along the ground but is stopped by the Australian who runs round to dive and save four runs.

The pair at the crease have batted nicely since coming in under difficult circumstances as they bring up a 30 partnership.

Wood has to bide his time before producing an exemplary cover drive that races away for four runs.

He has admitted before how much he enjoys batting but can’t get carried away as Cummins tries to work one in from over the wicket.

Cummins tries to unnerve Wood with a bouncer but is sent for four runs as Wood manages to get a top edge to run away over the head of Carey behind the stumps.

Run rate is just under five an over.


It’s not pretty defending from Woakes but it is doing the job as Marsh looks to generate swing before sending a straight ball down the wicket in the hope of catching the Englishman out.

Woakes adds a single with Wood doing the same on the final ball as quick running between the wicket pays off.

Woakes wants two runs midway through the over after running a shot to deep square-leg but is denied by a fielder who would have gone for the run-out if they had taken the run.

Starc sends his next delivery towards the white line as he tried to look for a yorker and somehow it isn’t given as a wide much to the amazement of Wood.

The Australian pace bowler dangles another that Wood snatches at but escapes making any contact with the ball.

The approach is simple for England now, attack and just see how many runs you can score as quick as possible.

Woood heralds that message by slapping Hazlewood back down the ground for four runs and adds a single to put Woakes on strike. 

More of the same follows with Woakes driving through off-side and despite Aussie fielders chasing, four more runs are racked up.

I wouldn’t call it a total collapse but as one man is pictured with his head in his hands at the Oval, you have to ask how an earth have England gone from being in such a strong position to suddenly losing four wickets for just 28 runs.

Brook was the last guard and you feel this isn’t going to be the longest batting spell for Wood and Woakes.

England’s defence is broken as Brook is caught behind by Smith in the slips. The ball moved late and Starc gets Brook as he looked to race towards his century.

The ball has moved more after lunch but this collapse has been caused enhanced by England’s poor decision-making at the crease.

Really strong over from Hazlewood as he gets Bairstow and continues to get some good bounce out the surface that is making things uncomfortable for England.

Woakes comes into the fray to replace the England wicket keeper.

We mentioned Bairstow had just risked his wicket with an inside edge narrowly avoiding the stumps, this time he doesn’t get any luck with Hazlewood’s delivery striking the bat and then smashing into the stumps.

England bring up 200 runs for their innings as both batsmen add quick singles at the start of the over. 

Bairstow must have his heart in his mouth as he tries to drive, gets an inside edge and the ball somehow avoids the wicket as it runs away behind the stumps.

Brook brings up 80 on the final ball with a shot into the off-side just too far away from Khawaja and plugging in the turf.

Bairstow adds two more runs and plays smart by not getting tempted into playing balls dangled outside off-stump by Hazlewood.

Meanwhile we see Stokes sat in the pavilion watching on and looks as if he is absolutely fuming after being bowled by Starc.

Bairstow rounds out the over on strike and will look to just steady the ship.

Disaster for England as Stokes walks for just three runs as Starc finally gets some movement out of the wicket.

That places England in a precarious position just shy of 200 runs. They will want at least 300 runs before going in to bowl but that is a tall order.

Brook will have to reign in his attacking approach and build a partnership with Bairstow or there is a risk of a collapse.

It’s an absolute corker from Starc as he gets the ball to nip back in from outside off-stump and the ball takes the stump out the ground as Stokes tries to slog across his line.

It was a great delivery but Stokes made it look even better with that shot. 

It’s unpredictable bowling from Murphy and in a way that makes it even more dangerous.

Stokes takes him on by stepping back in his crease and hitting the spinner through off-side, managing a single after initially pausing before running.

Brook adds two more, watching the ball really well before striking hard through mid-wicket as drinks arrive at the end of the over.

Brook has to wait and be patient against Starc before managing a single with a shot round the corner for a single.

Starc has relied on getting swing out the ball throughout his career but isn’t getting much out of the ball today as a straighter delivery is clipped away with Stokes getting off the mark.

The England captain then calls for a change of bat as he isn’t happy with something, cue a plethora of replacement options being brought out.

Brook escapes being caught behind on the final delivery as his shot falls short of Smith in the slips.

Cummins wants to attack the body of the England players and does so by mixing up good length deliveries with some shorter ones that Stokes gives a wry smile at.

Difficult opening spell for the England captain to navigate his way through after Ali was bowled by Murphy.

Good over from Murphy and Cummins will perhaps be wondering why he didn’t bring him into Australia’s bowling attack earlier.

He isn’t getting tons of turn out the surface but it’s doing enough to cause problems and Brook has to defend.

Ali went and Stokes is in, will he tee off?

The slower, straighter ball gets him and Ali is gone as Murphy claims his first wicket of the Ashes. 

Ali struck across his line and just got the timing all wrong with the ball clattering into his stumps and that’s the end of his time at the crease.

Ali looks to be suffering with limited movement after being injured a couple of overs ago, so what’s his answer, smash sixes instead.

Cummins pops one up and Ali steps across his wicket to just lift the ball over leg-side and into the crowd, Bazball at its finest.

Both men add a single to bring up their 100 partnership with two more runs following.

Brook was the dangerman before lunch, now it’s Ali as he rounds out the over by ramping Cummins’ short ball for four over the wicket keeper’s head.

Hazlewood brings some much needed calmness back to Australia’s bowling and goes for just two singles off the over.

You feel Cummins needs to look at switching things up, similarly to how he should have at Old Trafford, because this is at risk of running away from the visitors with Brook and Ali dialed in.

It’s full, outside off-stump, and driven through extra cover for four by Brook. It gets even better as he sends Cummins back down the ground for another boundary, perfect timing on both shots.

Cummins responds with a delivery right on the stumps that requires intervention from Brook before he adds a single with his next strike through off-side.

Ali goes big, actually it’s huge as he walks down the wicket and smacks Cummins through leg-side for six runs.

Four more by’s follow to round out a nightmare over for the Aussie skipper.

Brook grabs four more runs but faces some really difficult bowling, almost getting caught LBW but the ball was probably going just over the stumps.

Ali is then hit on the inside of his leg by a quick delivery from Hazlewood and we have to take a break as England’s treatment team come on to help assess the injury to his groin.

The England batsman is eventually back in the fray and prods away the last ball of the over.


Cummins tempts Brook into a playing a shot he shouldn’t be going for at the start of the over by beating the Englishman’s outside edge before really ramping up the pressure with a 90mph delivery.

That almost takes his off-stump with in-swing this time beating the inside edge and cutting Brook in half but sailing just over the stumps.

There is then a great run-out chance as Brook runs a risky single but Cummins misses his throw.

Brook adds two runs through quick singles to bring up his half-century and he has looked brilliant after navigating a tricky early spell. Australia will be ruing dropping him at the start of his innings and have paid for that error.

Ali has been tasked with holding a defensive approach and takes a single from the over with the number three not willing to take on any risks as he defends a ball going down leg side.

Smart play on show.

That’s 50 up for Harry Brook and he has done it in some style with a mix of range hitting and quick singles steadying England’s top order at a time when they really needed him. Brilliant from Brook.

We begin the afternoon session with a maiden as Ali defends six balls from Cummins without looking in too much trouble.

The Australia captain has been his side’s best bowler today, increasing his speeds from Old Trafford and Brook is now on strike with just two runs needed until his half-century.

They’ve filled themselves up on what I’m sure is a luxurious spread inside the Oval pavilion and are back out with the match nicely poised as England look to continue their high-scoring between Ali and Brook.

That’s lunch at the Oval and we have raced through the morning session with England starting brightly before being rocked by Australia.

Pat Cummins opted to bowl with cloud cover overhead but was punished by England’s openers as Ben Ducket and Zak Crawley raced towards 50 before falling in quick succession.

Joe Root was hoping to steady the ship but collapsed under the weight of Josh Hazlewood’s bowling, clipping onto his stumps with England losing three wickets in 22 balls.

Fortunately Moeen Ali and Harry Brook overcame a nervous start to find their footing in the crease and as we leave for lunch England are on top with Harry Brook racing to 48 runs from just 41 balls.

Brook moves one run closer to his half-century with a single and is then repaid strike with Ali knocking one run into leg-side.

He has to get a move on between the wickets as Marnus Labuschagne fields smartly with Brook then adding another run to round out the final over of the morning session.

England’s run rate back over five an over after some quick scoring in the last few overs.

Brook is tempted into trying to play a clip round the corner but almost finds himself in the same position as Duckett did when he was caught behind as the ball stays straight and almost edges off the face of the bat.

Any notion of hesitancy is then ejected in the next ball as Brook drives a boundary, following that up by smashing Starc’s 91mph delivery for four more runs with a beautiful cut shot.

It gets even better as turns to smack six runs through leg-side and now is just five runs away from his half-century.

Strong running see’s England add two more runs to their total with the run rate back up to 4.7 per over.

Ali has found his groove and defends strongly to Marsh with the ball looking like it’s beginning to wear with less swing coming now.

Good batting and bowling on display at the Oval.

Ali is risky with his opening shot of the over and he knows it as England’s number three shakes his head after almost edging a drive behind to Carey.

He adds a single that gives Starc three balls at Brook who is in a precarious position looking to close in on a half-century and re-establish a strong position for England.

Starc sends a warning shot to Brook with a shorter ball that hits him in the glove and onto helmet at the end of the over.

Brook shows Marsh zero respect as the Australian pace bowler is put back in to bowl and is dispatched for four runs before going for six more with his second ball.

The 24-year-old confidently smashes a fuller delivery through cow corner as Marsh wonders what to do next.

The Australian recovers well to prevent any more boundaries for the rest of the over.

Starc struggled to find consistency during his first spell but is brought back into Australia’s attack as the ball begins to wear.

He won’t be happy with Khawaja as Ali scores four runs with the opening ball of the over with a really nice cut through off-side that is met by the chasing fielder before bouncing out of his hands and over the ropes.

Ali then gets off strike by scoring a single around the corner as Brook gets some luck with a leading edge that beats the gap between slip and gully and races away for four runs.

Brook doesn’t look sure with the first ball as he temptingly opens his bat almost looking to cut Hazlewood through point before pulling away at the last moment.

Hazlewood looks a lot more accurate after taking the wicket of Root and is trying to swing the ball back in as he looks to target Brook’s leading pad.

Brook is patient throughout the over before taking a step out his crease and striking hard through off-side to add another boundary.


It’s a maiden over for Australia as Cummins continues his great bowling spell on an overcast day at the Oval.

The Australian captain endured a frustrating time with the ball in hand in Manchester as England’s batters smashes him all over the park but there is no danger of that today.

He scuttles some shorter balls down towards Ali who is forced to either leave early or play a very straight block in a bid to avoid any risk of edging behind.

Ali skips away a single with Brook backing up well to allow some strong running between the wickets. 

Brook looks between two minds as he tries to drive Hazlewood back down the ground and escapes being caught behind as the ball sails over the head of the two fielders in the slips.

This partnership doesn’t look strong so far and some smart play is needed.

Australia’s pace bowlers are hammering balls deep into the crease and that means any late swing is wreaking havoc for the batsmen. Brook scores a boundary but should be walking as well as Carey drops him behind the stumps.

The Aussie wicket keeper has been excellent this series but tries to take a catch with one hand and puts the ball down into the ground.

Brook survives but this is nervous times for England in their first innings.

Australia have got England rattled as Root falls cheaply to a brilliant delivery from Hazlewood. The England star is seriously angry as he smacks his bat while walking off the crease and the hosts are in trouble after starting so strongly.

Brook has to defend as he comes in and manages a single at the end of the over.

Joe Root won’t want to watch that one again as he his stump is uprooted by some brilliant bowling from Hazlewood. He had to defend that ball but chose to try a drive and only had to hear the sound of ball on wood as he walks off.

Root defends at the start of the over but has had enough of defending and finally lets his hands fly with a drive through mid-off that runs away towards the boundary with the chasing fielder unable to stop four runs.

Cummins mixes the over up with a short delivery that picks up nicely and surprises Root who fortunately managed to move his bat out the way just in time.

England’s run rate slows down as Root and Ali look to establish themselves at the crease.

Ali is forced to defend throughout the over before managing a couple of singles that gives Root a chance against Marsh. 

Expect Root to start to play his usual style shortly as he has done throughout the series.

It’s two for two for Australia as they finally begin to find some consistent shape with the ball. 

Crawley is gone with Joe Root and Moeen Ali now in at the crease as a new partnership looks to add to England’s total.

Root makes a nervous start as he almost edges to slips but survives.

Oh no two wickets in two overs and suddenly England’s lead doesn’t look as convincing. Crawley had just found space through mid-off with a perfectly-timed drive but looks lazy with his next effort and edges to Smith who makes no mistake in the slips.

That wicket on the final ball of the over gives Australia confidence at a stage when Crawley and Duckett were just beginning to find some real comfortability in their partnership.

Crawley finds a boundary with a lovely strike through off-side before adding a single that places Duckett on strike.

His wicket falls and England lose their opener.

It’s a shorter delivery from Marsh and Duckett walks off as the review shows the ball just touched his glove on the way through to the Australian wicket-keeper.

He will be really frustrated with that as he gets caught out trying to pull towards the boundary.

Cummins is looking like the most likely bowler to take a wicket as he continues to find movement on the seam with Crawley giving a rye smile as one delivery almost takes his off-stump.

Duckett adds three runs through the over with Crawley limited as he is made to defend deep in his crease as Cummins hammers away with brilliant bowling in the same patch over and over again.

A good contest between bat and ball is ensuing when Cummins is running in.

This has been a really strange performance from Duckett because he is scoring quickly and closing in on his half-century but hasn’t looked convincing. 

This flat-bat batting style will be frustrating Australia especially as they decided to bowl and more singles through leg-side follow him.

Marsh is penalised for a no-ball on the final delivery of the over that brings up the 50 partnership with Steve Smith then dropping Crawley. Nightmare for the visitors.

That dropped catch was a golden opportunity and just seems to deflate Australia for the rest of the over ad Crawley and Duckett add a few more quick runs to their tally.

It’s not classy batting from Duckett as he keeps flat-batting through off-side but it’s so far finding gaps that must be annoying for Cummins.

The Australian captain is getting some good movement out the ball but has to settle without a wicket.

Duckett should be walking and Cummins surely thinks he will be as the England opener flashes his hands at a swinging delivery and edges through to Warner in the slips. It looks like an easy catch and it probably is but the ball bursts through his hands and Duckett survives while also running a single.

Australia have a shout for LBW against Duckett but decide not to review and that proves to be the correct decision.

Duckett then tries to flat-bat runs through mid-on but is prevented by an Australian fielder who quickly throws the ball towards the wicket keeper more in frustration than anything.

The left-hander scores the only run of the over with a single.

Crawley is looking to be the more disciplined of the two batsmen as he nips away a single and gives Duckett – who has started brilliantly – another crack at Starc.

The Australian looks increasingly frustrated as Duckett steps across his line and fires more runs through leg-side and it might be time for Cummins to consider bringing in a short fielder on that side.

More singles follow and Starc looks at odds as to why he can’t get more swing out the ball. Are Australia ruing putting England in to bat?

Give Duckett a half-tracker and he will smack you right back down the ground as he does with Hazelwood’s opening ball of the over, fortunately Crawley was alert enough to jump over it and let the red run away for four.

His next shot isn’t as convincing with Duckett looking to pull through leg-side but instead edging to point, Australia don’t have a man inside the ring there and it plugs allowing England to run two runs.

More quick singles follow throughout the over with England maintaining a dominant run rate of over five runs per over. Mitch Marsh leaves the field to receive treatment on a pre-existing injury at the end of the over.

It’s not convincing but Crawley gets another boundary as he hits a swinging Starc delivery through backwards point into a space where there was previously a fielder. 

Duckett then gets on strike as the pair run a single but nearly edges of the face of his bat behind to Carey as a straighter delivery is close to taking a snick of the woodwork.

Any nerves are then swatted away for four runs with the next delivery as Duckett convincingly adds more runs through leg-side. 

Australia might be slightly concerned with England’s run rate in the last two overs.

England’s opening batsmen begin to settle their nerves and work in tandem as they score with quick singles courtesy of some smart running.

Duckett favours the clip down leg-side while Crawley looks to drive but can only find a fielder as Hazlewood tries to breakdown his defence.

Better batting from England after some nervy moments in the opening overs.

Brilliant bowling on display from Starc as he mixes up line and length to put Crawley under some serious pressure.

Australia lose their review for LBW but nearly get the England opener’s wicket with the next few balls as Crawley is caught in two minds whether to play or leave.

He blocks an in-swinger on the final ball and will be happy to get through that over.


The review shows the ball was missing the wickets and Crawley stays put at the crease. That will add some doubt into the England opener’s head over what shots to play.

Starc fires a delivery down at Crawley who doesn’t play a shot and it hits his back-pad. The umpire doesn’t think it’s out, Stacr is adamant the ball is coming back onto the stumps and Cummins reviews.

Duckett gets off the mark with Josh Hazlewood’s first delivery as he clips two runs through deep square-leg. The England batsman has shown he likes to score on his dominant hand throughout this series but is made to defend down off-side with the next ball.

Halewood finds his length with a beautiful bit of swing midway through the over that Duckett was so close to edging through behind and the next ball he does edge to slips with the ball fortunately not carrying to Usman Khawaja.

He looks nervous after two dangerous deliveries and gets off strike for the final ball that Crawley smashes through the off-side for four runs.

There is a tinge of green on top of the wicket but make no mistake this is a dry playing surface and Starc is already getting some swing with his deliveries.

Crawley leaves the first few before being forced into playing a block as the Australian pace bowler puts one right on the stumps.

Carey rescues four by runs as he dives down leg-side with Crawley seeing out the over in the same way he started it.

The first ball gets a cheer from the home crowd as Crawley leaves a quick delivery and we are underway at the Oval.

The national anthems and pre-match niceties have concluded and we are ready to get underway as Ben Duckett and Zak Crawley head to the crease. Mitchell Starc will open the bowling.

The players are emerging from their dressing rooms at the Oval and out onto the pitch as we prepare for the fifth Test to get underway shortly. Don’t be fooled, this series is still very much alive and we hope you stick with us throughout the next five days for what is set to be more enthralling and high-octane Ashes cricket.

Never in sports history have weather updates been as closely followed as they were at Old Trafford for the last Test with rain eventually ruling out England’s chances of victory.

The good news is that the rain is keeping away from the Oval today at least for the majority of the day with a small possibility of showers around 4pm.

We are expecting cloud cover throughout the day and that will have Australia’s swing bowlers licking their lips.

Pat Cummins has finally won a toss and puts England in to bat at the start of today. 

The Australian captain lost all four previous coin flips but is successful today and decides to have a bowl on what is a very dry pitch.

Cummins is hopefully the cloud cover overhead and dry wicket will his side rattle through England’s top order with Ben Stokes looking on ominously as he returns to the pavilion.

The England opener’s sensational 189 run-haul in England’s first innings at Old Trafford ensured that he tops the run charts for the Ashes series.

Crawley overtook previous top scorer and Australian opener Usman Khawaja in Manchester with the Englishman eight runs clear of his opposite number.

Crawley has scored 385 runs across four matches and will be hoping for another epic performance in Surrey as he looks to take the personal accolade at the end of the series.

However, Ben Stokes isn’t far behind on 360 runs and another white-ball batting performance could see him chase his team-mate down.

Pat Cummins is on the verge of an unwanted 118-year first as an Australian Test captain.

Only this time even his harshest critics can’t lay into the 30-year-old.

It involves the toss. Cummins is seemingly not very good at calling correctly.


Eccentric Australian batsman Marnus Labuschagne is renowned for his attention to detail – and the cricket nerd was at it again ahead of the fifth Ashes Test at The Oval.

Labuschagne, 29, borrowed some tools from the ground staff in London to ensure his bat was the perfect weight as the gripping series draws to a close.

Cricket reporter Bharat Sundaresan tweeted the bizarre scenes, with Labuschagne’s teammates no doubt left shaking their heads.


Ben Stokes confirmed that England will remain unchanged, going into the fifth and final Ashes Test which starts at The Oval on Thursday.

‘Everyone’s pulled up well,’ said the England captain. 

‘It’s been a tough four games and I think one little positive we could maybe take from the rain (at Old Trafford) is that the bowlers got a bit more rest. It’s a strange one to look at from that point of view.’


DAVID LLOYD: So off we go, back down to the Big Smoke for one last time. Plenty to do and plenty to see and it seems that England are doubly determined to get the result they need.

Over the course of four Tests, Ben Stokes’s side have been the better outfit, but the reality is that they’re down. That’s sport. Anyway, 2-2 will feel so much better than 3-1. I know my pre-series prediction of Australia winning 3-1 may still be correct but I hope it isn’t.

In fact, I hope I’m dreadfully wrong — these lads deserve to at least draw the series.


This was meant to be a replica of 2005 with the Ashes on the line and the series level at 2-2. It’s not, but there is still plenty at stake.

Australia were set for defeat in Manchester but stole a draw thanks to two days of torrential rain at Old Trafford and that ensured they retained the Ashes. 

Pat Cummins’ side haven’t won at the Oval since 2001 and want victory in the final Test to dispel suggestions that they only kept the urn through a technicality.

For England, Ben Stokes explained how he felt emotionless after the fourth Test and is desperate to thrash the visitors and prove that Bazball is the winning formula in Test cricket.

Play gets underway today at 11am.

Good morning and welcome to the final Ashes Test of the year. What could have been the urn-deciding encounter will instead be an opportunity for England to draw the series and continue their dominance on display in Manchester.

We will be bringing you over-by-over updates throughout the day and will of course cover every major talking point from Surrey with our team of expert cricket reporters poised and waiting.

Stay with us throughout the day for the final Test match.

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