27 Dec 2010

England consolidate unassailable Test position

9:15 pm on 27 December 2010

Jonathan Trott's second century of the series has placed England in a virtually unassailable position after two days of the fourth Ashes Test against Australia in Melbourne.

Having dismissed the home side for just 98 on the first day, the visitors finished the second day at 444 for five, a first-innings lead of 346.

Paceman Peter Siddle took the wickets of Alastair Cook, Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen to give Australia a glimmer of hope in the crucial match, and Paul Collingwood and Ian Bell went cheaply.

But Trott pulled the innings together with a commanding 141 not out, the fifth century of his brief Test career; he and wicket-keeper Matthew Prior had put on 158 for the sixth wicket by the close.

If England win, they will retain the Ashes, as they need only draw the five-match series, which is currently tied at a Test apiece.