Broad, Swann hit out to keep Australia waiting

An entertaining century partnership between England’s Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann held up Australia’s victory charge on the third day of the fourth Ashes test on Sunday.

Broad and Swann scored 108 runs from 79 balls and England reached 245 for eight at lunch, still 98 runs behind the Australians who should still comfortably level the series in the afternoon session.

Broad, dropped three times, was out for 61 but Swann remained unbeaten on 58 at the interval with Steve Harmison on six.

England resumed on 82 for five following their collapse on Saturday and nightwatchman James Anderson struck the second ball of the day for four but he edged the next one from Ben Hilfenhaus to Ricky Ponting at second slip.

Matt Prior played two sumptuous square drives for four but he fell for 22, nibbling at a Hilfenhaus outswinger and edging the ball to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin who took a brilliant diving catch.

Broad was dropped by Peter Siddle on 18, a very difficult chance at mid-off, and he struck several crisp boundaries including four in one over from Stuart Clark.

He reached his half-century, made from only 42 balls, with a crashing straight drive for four off Siddle and Swann also went on the attack, the pair adding 49 runs in three overs from Clark and Siddle.

Broad was dropped again on 53 by Mitchell Johnson running back at long-off and Swann’s quick single brought up the 100 partnership off 73 balls.

Broad survived yet again when Simon Katich failed to grasp another tough catch on the boundary but his luck finally ran out when he pulled Siddle and Shane Watson held the chance at deep square leg.

Swann continued to play his shots and he reached his half-century with a hook for six off Siddle. – Reuters

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