The Ashes Round-up: England fightback deflects Australia's attention from the urn

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There was an air of tradition almost as England collapsed in Adelaide on Monday to go a long way to hand the second Test to Australia.

The tourists' star men Joe Root and Alastair Cook were among those blown away in the first session at Adelaide Oval and, though England bowled brilliantly under the lights, Australia were 268 runs ahead by the close of play.

 

THE HEADLINES

- England's top order collapses to 102-5, James Vince (2), Root (9), Cook (37) and Dawid Malan (19) all falling in the first session.

- Nathan Lyon and Mitchell Starc each take a screamer to dismiss Moeen Ali and Jonny Bairstow respectively, both caught and bowled.

- Lyon mops up the England tail to move to a world-leading tally of 55 wickets in 2017, with Craig Overton (41 not out) top-scoring at number nine on debut.

-  James Anderson (2-14) and Chris Woakes (2-13) get the pink ball talking in the night session to reduce Australia to 53-4, but England's resistance comes too late.

MOMENT OF THE DAY

Lyon's full-length diving catch perhaps looked the more spectacular, but Starc's incredible show of reflexes to fling a hand at Jonny Bairstow's solid drive and take it at the second attempt was a truly super-human effort.

 

OPTA FACTS

- England haven't won when conceding a lead batting second since 2008 (vs NZ, Old Trafford). Since then, D7 L14, including defeats in each of the last 11 Tests when this has happened.

- Today was only the fourth time in his last 12 third-innings efforts that David Warner's strike rate did not exceed 100.

- 21 of James Anderson's 44 Test wickets in 2017 have been of top-four batsmen.

- England's highest successful chase in Australia is 332-7 in 1928-29. Their highest successful chase at Adelaide is 112-3 in 1911-12.

REACTION

"We weren't expecting as much swing," Anderson told BT Sport of the bowler-friendly twilight conditions. "Even when it's doing the amount it did you've got to put it in the right areas, we learnt from the first innings."

England may well have impressed, but Starc was not concerned: "We've got a big lead, so it's not ideal to go to stumps four down but we're 260 ahead and England have got two big night sessions ahead of them if they want to win. I'd rather be in our dressing room than theirs."

 

VICTORY IN SIGHT

Despite ending the day with their tails up, England could have as many as five sessions to bat through and salvage the Test, and perhaps the series. Would you fancy their chances?