Sydney: England tail-ender Stuart Broad hung on for 35 deliveries on the fifth and final day of the fourth Ashes Test to miraculously draw the game along with Jimmy Anderson to deny Australia a 4-0 series lead at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) here on Sunday.
Staring at an almost certain defeat with Australian quicks Pat Cummins and Scott Boland running riot, Broad negotiated the final hour of play with utmost concentration, holding on for a good 50 minutes for his eight runs (35 balls) as the Joe Root-led England have something to look forward to going in the fifth Test at Hobart from January 14.
England’s score in the second innings read 270/9 in 102 overs.
In a tense final hour at the SCG, Australian skipper Cummins had to turn to Steve Smith’s leg breaks as the skies darkened and he delivered with a wicket, his first in six years, to leave England needing to play out two overs with just one wicket left. Anderson and Broad then held on for two overs to deny Australia a win at the SCG.
Earlier in the day, resuming on 30/0, England made merry early on with Zak Crawley playing some big strokes to kick start the morning. However, the opening partnership itself did not last too long with Haseeb Hameed dismissed in single digits for the sixth successive time.
While Crawley (77 off 100 balls) flourished, Australia managed another breakthrough from the other end, with Nathan Lyon cleaning up Dawid Malan. Root, England’s highest run-scorer in the series by a long way, walked in to join Crawley.
The England opening batter compiled his first fifty of the tour and first since February 2021 to give England a reasonably solid start to the day.