England v Australia, day three LIVE: Rain at Old Trafford delays the start of day three, with the visitors in total control after Steve Smith’s batting masterclass
- England resume day three on 23-1 with Rory Burns and Craig Overton batting
- Australia struck late on day two to remove opening batsman Joe Denly for four
- Australia had earlier declared on 497-8 with Steve Smith scoring a superb 211
England are on the ropes and are desperately trying to keep their bid to reclaim the Ashes alive in the fourth Test at Old Trafford.
Australia batted for nearly two rain-impacted days in Manchester before declaring on 497-8, with star man Steve Smith scoring an incredible 211.
With England facing a tricky final 10 overs of the day, Australia struck late on through Pat Cummins when Mathew Wade took a brilliant catch at short leg to remove Joe Denly, who had been bumped up to opener.
England will resume on 23-1 with nightwatchman Craig Overton, on three, at the crease with Rory Burns, who begins again on 15.
There is a fair chance of rain returning and delaying proceedings in the first half of the day, but it is scheduled to clear up about an hour before tea.
England’s best hope now appears to be batting long into day three and as much of day four and drag the game towards a draw.
That would then mean the Ashes came down to a winner-takes-all fifth and final Test at The Oval next week.
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