Day 5 in Manchester was washed out as rain wreaked havoc in the fourth Ashes Test between England and Australia. As a result, the match ended in a draw and the visitors retained the Ashes 2-1. The Ben Stokes-led team dominated the first four days of the competition. Australia are five wickets down for 214, 61 behind England’s 592 in their first innings. The fifth and final Test of the series is yet to be played by either team, but it will not change the result as the visitors will retain the trophy.
After the disappointing loss, England skipper Ben Stokes attended the post-match press conference and was asked if going 0-2 down at the start of the series was a bigger disappointment for his side than the drawn fourth Test.
Keeping a blank face, Stokes replied, “No, nothing like that.” He then gave the reporter a smile.
In another interview, Stokes gave a similar one-word response.
Straight to the point from Ben Stokes… pic.twitter.com/dW8rFlJcJU
— Sky Sports Cricket (@SkyCricket) July 23, 2023
Despite the draw, Australia will need to avoid defeat at the Oval if they are to secure their first Ashes series win in England since 2001.
“The group should be very proud. Our priority is to come here and win the Ashes, but it’s nice to hold on even if it’s not the best conditions,” Australian captain Pat Cummins said.
A dejected Stokes said: “It was very difficult to play the cricket we played in the first three days, but that’s all part of the journey. We knew what we had to do and we got it.
“It was another do-or-die game for us and I don’t think we could have done much — bowl them out and score 590. We have one game left and we want to go out with a win like in 2019 and level the series,” he added.
Australia finished 214-5 in their second innings, 61 runs behind England’s 592 in the first innings.
England managed just one wicket at that point when part-time off-spinner Joe Root caught Marnes Labuschagne, but the Australians failed to mount a 111-run charge in the hosts’ victory.
(with AFP inputs)
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