Tue, Dec 19, 3:03pm by Head Editor
Australia are once again the holders of World Cricket’s most prize possession, the Ashes urn, after beating the old enemy in emphatic fashion at Perth’s WACA ground on Monday.
The innings and 41-run shellacking in the final Ashes Test at the home of Western Australia Cricket sealed the deal following a 10-wicket win in the series opener in Brisbane and a 120-run win in Adelaide earlier this month.
The final day’s play started in controversy, when it was revealed that water had seeped under the covers, which forced a delay to the start of play, much to the disgust of Steve Smith and his charges.
The delay wasn’t able to save the tourists though, with Josh Hazlewood taking 5/48 and Pat Cummins 2/53, as the Three Lions were bundled out for just 218 runs. The only worry for the men in baggy greens is the heel injury that paceman Mitchell Starc picked up on Sunday.
Speaking of the world’s best batsman, Steve Smith, he added the man of the match award to his bulging trophy cabinet, for his highest Test score, of 239.
The 28-year-old has now scored 14 centuries as skipper, which has seen his average soar to 62.32, while his average so far this series is 142, having scored 426 runs.
Smith’s counterpart, Joe Root, has had a vastly different series. The 26-year-old is averaging just 29 with the bat, having failed again the final innings of his side’s loss in Perth.
Coming into the series, the hosts were as long as $1.70 to secure a win on home soil, but now the 5-0 whitewash in considered the most likely outcome in the correct series score market, at $1.91.
If the hosts are to achieve their third whitewash of the English in four home series, then they’ll need to produce the goods on Boxing Day in Melbourne, which is the next stop in the five-match series.
$1.48 is all you will get for Australia to go 4-0 up, while England’s first win at the MCG since 2010, is priced at $5.25, just behind the draw, which is a $5 shot.
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