The Jerusalem Post
Australia reclaims Ashes with WACA demolition
PERTH (Reuters) – Australia thrashed England by an innings and 41 runs in the third Test in Perth on Monday to reclaim the Ashes with two matches to spare and condemn Joe Root’s team to a period of gloomy introspection.
Seamer Josh Hazlewood finished with a five-wicket haul as England was bowled out for 218 before tea on a rain-hit final day at the WACA.
Four years after Alastair Cook’s side meekly surrendered the Ashes at the same venue, Root’s England was condemned to hand back the urn with the same humiliating 3-0 score-line.
Australia quick Pat Cummins wrapped up the match, dismissing Chris Woakes (22) behind the wicket, triggering a round of bear-hugs with whooping teammates in the middle.
His captain Steve Smith was named Man-of-the-Match for a second time in the series, his brilliant 239 having left England with an improbable second innings mountain to climb.
“It’s been an amazing couple of weeks, I’ve really enjoyed every moment of it,” said the beaming skipper. “To know we’ve been able to get that urn back, all the emotions came out at once.”
Smith’s dominant series has put his counterpart in the shade, with Root struggling with the bat and let down badly by his senior players across the three defeats.
“It’s bitterly disappointing,” said Root. “One of the most frustrating things is we haven’t been blown away.
“In all three games there have been periods where we’ve matched and outplayed Australia. I’m sure the next day or so will be pretty tough but we’ve got a bit of time to get ready for Melbourne... and show the character of the group we have.”