England required just 3 wickets on Day 4 to retain the Ashes for the first time down under since the famous Ashes series in 1985/86. Ryan Harris is due to have surgery on the stress fracture of his ankle and will therefore be unable to bat.
England got a breakthrough very early on Day 4 with Chris Tremlett picking up his first wicket of the innings by bowling Mitchell Johnson off his pad for just 6 leaving Australia on 172 – 7.
Brad Haddin was the only shinning light in the Australian innings as he went to his 50. His keeping and batting throughout the Ashes series has been phenomenal.
Brad Haddin and Peter Siddle both continued to take the attack to the bowlers. With the ball moving in the air it was only a matter of time before England wrapped up the victory. Andrew Strauss resisted the temptation to take the new ball in order to keep his spinner bowling.
A move which paid off a couple of overs later as Siddle went to repeat the dose of hitting Swann for 6 again and didn’t time it as well and Kevin Pietersen took a good catch running round to his left. Siddle managed to get his top score in test cricket with 40 off just 50 balls.
With Hilfenhaus promoted to number 10 which was one position too high in regards to his batting ability. He only managed to last 4 balls as he edged to Matt Prior who took a good catch off the bowling of Tim Bresnan who confirmed his selection as a good one by finishing with 4 for 50 off 21 overs.
As scenes of celebration began to unfold Brad Haddin was left stranded on 55 not out. England will celebrate well into the night as they have throughly outplayed Australia in all 3 departments on every day of the fourth test in Melbourne. England have won by a massive innings and 157 runs which just shows the gulf between the two teams at the moment.
Although they have retained the Ashes they will not be happy with winning the series 2 – 1 or even drawing it 2 – 2 should Australia win the final Ashes test therefore alot of hard work is still ahead but for now the celebrations will go on.