Sat, Jan 08, 2011 - Page 20 News List

England celebrate ‘special’ Ashes victory in Sydney

AFP, SYDNEY

Alastair Cook, left, Graeme Swann, center, and James Anderson of England celebrate in the dressing room with the base of the Ashes urn after defeating Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground yesterday.

PHOTO: REUTERS

England celebrated an emphatic Ashes triumph yesterday, inflicting a record third innings drubbing in the final Test by wrapping up an innings and 83-run win in Sydney.

“It feels pretty special if I’m honest,” England skipper Andrew Strauss said.

“If you look back at the history of Ashes confrontations, what we’ve achieved here will be remembered pretty fondly,” Strauss said.

The tourists scored 644 and dismissed the hosts for 280 and 281.

It was probably England’s most comprehensive performance of the series with Alastair Cook, Matt Prior and Ian Bell all hitting tons.

Their bowlers, led by James Anderson, exposed the gulf between the two attacks by twice dismissing Australia cheaply.

Aussie captain Michael Clarke said his side were comprehensively beaten.

“No doubt England have outplayed us through this series, in all facets of the game,” said Clarke, who later announced he would quit Twenty20 cricket to focus on the longer formats.

N ZEALAND V PAKISTAN

REUTERS, HAMILTON, NEW ZEALAND

Pakistan’s Abdul Rehman took three for 51 as New Zealand scrambled to 260 for seven at the close of play on the first day of the first Test at Seddon Park yesterday.

Kane Williamson was on 44 with Tim Southee on 56 after the hosts had appeared to be in control on 78-1 at lunch, only for Pakistan to seize the advantage.

The hosts lost four wickets after lunch and Pakistani momentum continued after tea when Reece Young was dismissed for 14 by Rehman. Tanvir Ahmed then trapped Daniel Vettori LBW for a duck.

Brendon McCullum and Martin Guptill had provided the Kiwis with a good start, steering them to 78 for one at lunch.

McCullum slashed at an Umar Gul delivery and was caught at deep backward point for 56, while Taylor followed shortly after for 6 when he got a thin edge through to ’keeper Adnan Akmal off Rehman.

Guptill and Jesse Ryder attempted to rebuild the innings, but just as they looked like they were ready to capitalize after a 36-run partnership, Ryder was run out.

Guptill then hit a Rehman full toss to mid-off on 50.

S AFRICA V INDIA

AFP, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni looked ahead to new challenges after his side validated their ranking as the No. 1 Test team by earning a share of the series against second-ranked South Africa at Newlands on Thursday.

The third and final Test ended in a draw with India on 166 for three after being set 340 to win.

“We’re happy with our performance,” Dhoni said, pointing out that India were possibly one wicket away from being able to force a win when South Africa were reeling at 130 for six on the fourth day. “If we could have got that one wicket we could have done something very special.”

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