Johnson helps skittle England

2010-12-17 09:26
Mitchell Johnson (File)

Perth - Mitchell Johnson picked up six wickets to help dismiss England 81 runs short of their hosts' first innings score on the stroke of tea on the second day of the third Ashes Test in Perth on Friday.

Johnson finished with 6/38.

Earlier, a fired-up Johnson destroyed England's top order in a four-wicket burst to swing the momentum back to Australia as the tourists stuttered to 119/5 at lunch.

With England's openers threatening to get comfortable, the 29-year-old Johnson began his devastating spell in his sixth over, coaxing Alastair Cook into a miscued drive to gully where Mike Hussey took a smart low catch to dismiss the in-form opening batsman for 32.

Johnson then trapped number three Jonathan Trott lbw for four with a quicker delivery in his next over before dismissing Kevin Pietersen for a duck, also lbw.

Pietersen, whose match-winning double-century set up England's second test win at Adelaide, appealed after being given out but the television review confirmed the decision.

Johnson's withering two-over burst had his fellow seamers bouncing and paceman Ryan Harris soon took the key wicket of Andrew Strauss for 52, the English captain feathering a catch to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.

Johnson continued the rout with his third lbw decision in his 10th over, removing Paul Collingwood for five not long after sending a furious bouncer past the middle-order batsmen's ear.

Australia captain Ricky Ponting appealed the not-out decision successfully and England were left reeling at 98-5.

Ian Bell, on 13, and wicketkeeper Matt Prior (3) were faced with the task of reviving England's innings.

Following his top-scoring 62 in Australia's first innings 268, Johnson's 11-over spell capped a spectacular return to the Australian test side after he was dropped for the second test in Adelaide for going wicketless for 170 runs at Brisbane.

It also sent England's chase crashing after openers Cook and Strauss rushed to 78 without loss after resuming on 29.

Johnson and Hussey's good work to remove the in-form Cook went some way to making up for Australia's blushes in the field.

The hosts' fielding woes have been a hallmark of the series, but they reached a new low in the morning's third over when Strauss edged a Harris delivery that sailed between wicketkeeper Haddin and first slip Shane Watson.

Neither went for the catch, leaving the ball to race harmlessly away for four and the culprits unwilling to look each other in the eye.

Strauss then smashed three boundaries in Harris's next over to add insult to injury.

England lead the five-Test series 1-0 and victory in Perth will see the tourists take the Ashes home for the first time in 24 years.



PJ Hughes, SR Watson, RT Ponting (captain), MJ Clarke, MEK Hussey, BJ Haddin (wk), SPD Smith, MG Johnson, RJ Harris, PM Siddle, BW Hilfenhaus


AJ Strauss (captain), AN Cook, IJL Trott, KP Pietersen, PD Collingwood, IR Bell, MJ Prior (wk), GP Swann, JM Anderson, ST Finn, CT Tremlett

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