A gritty hand by captain Joe Root has kept England alive in the third Ashes Test at Headingley, but former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting is confident that the visitors have enough of a cushion and that the contest hinges on the second new ball which will be available after eight overs on Sunday.
Both teams walked off the field at 7pm local time to a standing ovation from the packed crowd with England 3-156, still requiring 203 more runs to win to level the series 1-1. A win for Australia would mean they’ll retain the urn they won in 2017/18 on home soil.
“I know England have played really well this afternoon, they dug deep,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.
[8/25, 10:41] Reverse 5: “Denly and Root’s partnership was outstanding, but I think Australia has still got plenty of runs.
“We’ve seen (Josh) Hazlewood (2-35) and (Pat) Cummins (1-33) bowl outstandingly well right through the game and I think as the game goes on Nathan Lyon (0-42) is going to come in to it more and more.”
“The wicket looks like it’s flattened out considerably late this afternoon but there’s a new ball around the corner tomorrow morning.”
“It’s been a new-ball wicket all game. The other thing we’ve seen is in the game it has been a really hard wicket for anyone to come in and start on.”