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England suffering in a second test nightmare

IAN RANSOM
Last updated 15:35 08/12/2013
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CHRIS HYDE/Getty Images
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England's chase of 531 for victory in the second Ashes test against Australia got off to a disastrous start on Sunday, with openers Alastair Cook and Michael Carberry losing their wickets before lunch on day four at Adelaide Oval.

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Australia declared their innings closed at 132-3 before the start of play on a hot, overcast morning and the gambit paid rich dividends when Mitchell Johnson struck with his third ball to remove England captain Cook for one run.

Having beaten Cook for pace in the first innings with a searing delivery that crashed into his stumps, Johnson flung in a short ball that the England skipper hooked poorly, the top edge flying high and allowing Ryan Harris to lumber in from long leg for a fine catch taken low and to his right.

Carberry, who scored a fighting 60 in the first innings, followed soon after when he pulled paceman Peter Siddle to the same position where Nathan Lyon took another excellent catch to dismiss the opener for 14.

Joe Root, on 29 not out, and Kevin Pietersen, on 18, were left to survive a nervous hour to lunch, with England on 65-2 and still 466 runs adrift of their victory target.

Specialist spinner Nathan Lyon and part-timer Steven Smith were extracting vicious turn from the Adelaide Oval's new drop-in pitch and England face a daunting task with five sessions left in the match.

Australia lead the five-test series 1-0 after winning the opener in Brisbane.

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- Reuters

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