Mon, Dec 13, 2010 - Page 18 News List

Prior ton guides England to draw against Victoria

AFP, MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA

Matt Prior said England were aiming to go through their Australian tour unbeaten after the tourists ground out a draw in their three-day match with Victoria yesterday.

Set 311 to win on the final day at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, England were 211 for six off 54 overs when the match was called off as a draw.

England shut up shop after tea, scoring only 52 runs in 21 overs with Prior finishing unbeaten on 102 and skipper Andrew Strauss on 22 from 65 balls.

The tourists go into the third Ashes Test starting in Perth on Thursday holding a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.

Prior made no apologies for England’s dour tactics in the closing overs, saying the side were keen to protect their unbeaten run.

“Why would you carry on playing your shots and potentially risk losing a game? We didn’t want to do that,” he said.

England were reduced to 149 for six before Prior and Strauss shared an unbeaten 62-run stand.

Clint McKay led the Victorian bowling with 4-68 from 17 overs.

He bowled Alastair Cook for 10 before the tourists suffered a double blow, losing Paul Collingwood lbw for eight to Jayde Herrick and Steven Davies (18) caught at slip off McKay two balls later.

Eoin Morgan (six) was caught behind off Herrick before Prior and Tim Bresnan (19) added 45 for the fifth wicket.

Bresnan was caught behind off McKay and Ian Bell was his fourth victim, caught at short cover for 17.

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