England has refused to bow down in the face of an Ashes whitewash, striking four times with the ball on the first morning of the fifth Test in Sydney.
Alastair Cook won his first toss of the series and took a gamble by sending Australia in.
However, the captain’s nerves were calmed after his quicks removed Australian openers David Warner and Chris Rogers and skipper Michael Clarke cheaply then Shane Watson shortly before lunch to put England in charge.
Australia were 4-94 at lunch in front of a near-capacity crowd at the revamped SCG, with in-form No.3 Shane Watson falling for 43 on the last ball before the break. Live scores here.
Steve Smith was eight not out and to be joined by George Bailey.
Bailey was out shortly after the resumption, scoring just one run.
Once again it was left to ‘keeper Brad Haddin.
At tea Australia were 5-201 with Haddin and Smith unbeaten on 59 and 48 respectively.
Selectors stuck with the same line-up to make this the first Australian side to see out a five-match series unchanged, however the batsmen have some work to do if they’re to set up the third 5-0 clean sweep in Ashes history.
Desperate England blooded three debutants, the most in more than 20 years, with Joe Root among the casualties.
Cook obviously liked what he saw from the grassy SCG wicket when he made his toss decision, and despite moments of inconsistency, his quicks stood up.
Stuart Broad bowled sharply from the outset and bowled a scrambled Warner in the sixth over to leave Australia 1-22.
In his previous over, Warner (16) had punched Broad for three boundaries from four balls, but he attempted one drive too many and footwork let him down badly.
Whole-hearted competitor Stokes had Chris Rogers dragging one on through his legs attempting a pull shot for 11 and then removed Clarke with a brilliant full delivery which produced an edge to Ian Bell at second slip.
Stokes had figures of 2-32.
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