Townsville - In-form England paceman Chris Woakes claimed
six wickets and wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow had an injury scare as a Cricket
Australia XI reached 249 for nine at the close on the opening day of their
four-day tour match in Townsville on Wednesday.
The Warwickshire fast bowler finished the day with six for
54 in the final warm-up game before next week's Ashes series opener against
Australia in Brisbane.
The tourists didn't help their cause by spilling three
catches as CA XI skipper Matt Short top scored with 51.
England had an early injury scare when Test 'keeper Bairstow
was forced off the field for an hour after getting hit on a finger.
Bairstow was replaced by tour understudy Ben Foakes, who
took a catch before Bairstow returned to the game with bruising to the middle
finger of his left hand.
Woakes followed up his match-winning four for 17 in the
second innings against CA XI in Adelaide with an even better one, taking four
for eight at one stage in Townsville.
Woakes heads into the first Gabba Test in terrific form
after he was ruled out for bulk of last season with a side injury suffered
during the Champions Trophy.
Test hopeful Craig Overton (2-32) also edged closer to his
Off-spinner Moeen Ali had his first bowl on the tour after
recovering from a side strain. He finished wicketless for 39 off 16 overs.
England's spin pair Mason Crane and Moeen were astray with
their bowling lengths during the morning session.
Leg-spinner Crane had two catches dropped off his bowling
while a diving Bairstow also missed an opportunity when Woakes found the edge
of Simon Milenko's bat.