This article is from the source 'bbc' and was first published or seen on . It will not be checked again for changes.

You can find the current article at its original source at

The article has changed 11 times. There is an RSS feed of changes available.

Version 2 Version 3
England bowlers launch fightback Duo put Australia back in command
(about 2 hours later)
England's bowlers hit back hard on day two of the fourth Ashes Test to reduce Australia to 111-5 at lunch. Matthew Hayden and Andrew Symonds put England to the sword on the second afternoon as Australia won back control of the fourth Ashes Test in Melbourne.
The tourists - 3-0 down in the series - were skittled for 159 on Boxing Day but soon had a boost when Ricky Ponting mistimed a pull off Andrew Flintoff. The hosts were struggling on 84-5 in reply to England's 159 in the morning.
Matthew Hoggard then bowled Mike Hussey and Steve Harmison had Michael Clarke caught behind in his first over. But Hayden accelerated from a slow start to reach his 27th Test century in 170 balls, while Symonds also recovered from an uncertain start to hit 61.
Opener Matthew Hayden rode his luck to make an unbeaten 52 but the morning belonged to England and their seamers. The duo had put on an unbroken 142 by tea with Australia - 3-0 up in the series - cruising on 226-5, 67 ahead.
It was just what Flintoff's men needed after another demoralising day on Monday. It marked quite a turnaround after England had put their Boxing Day batting misery behind them with a fine bowling display in the first session.
The skipper and Hoggard were right on target from the off, causing Ponting and Hayden plenty of problems with a combination of probing lines and movement through the air. Skipper Andrew Flintoff and Matthew Hoggard were right on target from the off, causing Ricky Ponting and Hayden plenty of problems with a combination of probing lines and movement through the air.
A breakthrough duly came when Ponting tried to pull a wide one and holed out to Alastair Cook at mid-wicket. Ponting skied a pull off Flintoff to Alastair Cook at mid-wicket before Hoggard, who was carrying a slight rib injury, comprehensively bowled the prolific Mike Hussey.
Hayden, who might have been given out lbw to Hoggard on the first evening, continued to look uncomfortable against his clever variation. Things got even better for the visitors when Steve Harmison's extra bounce induced Michael Clarke into edging behind during his first over, a wicket maiden.
The big left-hander saw drives fly just between short cover and mid-off and through the slips. Hayden and Symonds rode their luck outside off-stump and the stand could have ended two balls after the lunch interval but Sajid Mahmood failed to run out Hayden with a throw from mid-off.
But Hoggard finally had his reward with the first ball after the drinks break when he comprehensively bowled Hussey, who had previously made scores of 86, 91, 61 not out, 74 not out and 103 in this series. But the burly Queenslanders overcame early scares to launch a succession of powerful strokes, finding the deep MCG boundaries with ease at times.
Things got even better for England when Harmison found bounce to have Clarke edging behind during an impressive wicket maiden. Symonds hammered Hoggard high over cover from successive deliveries before brutally lofting him over mid-wicket and the pressure seemed to lift when he reached his third Test fifty off 79 balls.
Andrew Symonds, who has struggled to establish himself at this level, began unconvincingly. Hayden, inspired by his friend's aggression, was also starting to free his arms and swung Hoggard over backward square-leg as the century partnership came up off 150 balls.
He was beaten all ends up by an absolute pearler from Harmison, who then saw an edge bounce just short of Paul Collingwood at slip. There were a couple of glimmers of hope for England in the last 40 minutes before tea: Collingwood got his finger tips to the ball when Symonds drove Flintoff high towards gully, and Monty Panesar had a confident lbw shout against Hayden rejected by umpire Rudi Koertzen.
But he hung around to provide support to friend Hayden, who reached his fifty just before the break to remind England they still had plenty of work to do. But Australia's comfort was shown in the way Hayden crashed the left-arm spinner down the ground for six and over wide mid-on to bring up his fifth century in the last six Tests at the MCG.
Another worry was the sight of Hoggard feeling his right side and grimacing towards the end of the morning. Normal service had been resumed.