England v Australia - 3rd Specsavers Ashes Test: Day One
England v Australia - 3rd Specsavers Ashes Test: Day One

Khawaja facing the axe after latest failure

Australia were bowled out with the last ball of the day as the third Ashes Test got under way at Headingley.

Under dark, moody skies, and with rain showers a constant menace, England captain Joe Root wasted no time in putting Australia in after winning what now looks like an excellent toss.

Australia are behind but not out of the match.

Five things we learned from day one in Leeds ...




The Australian number three got out to the worst ball of Stuart Broad's opening spell, flicking a ball down the leg-side, which should have gone for four, to the keeper.

It was the fifth time this series he has been out caught behind, and seventh time in a row against England.

Khawaja had one of the all-time bad net sessions on Tuesday at Headingley too. Since the start of the home Test series Khawaja is averaging just 29.2.

In his past 16 Test innings, the 32-year-old has only 409 runs. He scored one century, against Sri Lanka, which selectors have declared didn't count, and one 50.

His five Ashes innings have contributed just 99 runs. It's just not enough, but the only other batsmen in the squad are Cameron Bancroft and Mitch Marsh.



When neither captain wants to win the toss, because they don't want to have to decide what to do, you know the first session of any Test in England is always the hardest.

The opening partnerships in the series so far are testament to the difficulties of going in to bat first.

Australia has a top score of 13 before the first wicket falls, England 22.

Australia is in to its second combination, with an average opening stand of 10.2. England's is 12.5.

Marcus Harris got an absolute peach from Jofra Archer to dismiss him. David Warner played and missed four in a row from Stuart Broad. Chris Rogers is the last Aussie opener to score an Ashes hundred in England, in 2015. They are hard to come by.



One day in, and a shortened one at that, and the quality of the umpiring is again in the spotlight.

This time it was Kiwi Chris Gaffaney who had three incorrect decisions overturned through 40 overs. With world record holder Joel Wilson up the other end - the West Indian had 11 decisions overturned at Edgbaston - Gaffaney gave Usman Khawaja not out, David Warner out, and Tim Paine not out. Reviews found a huge edge from Khawaja, no edge from Warner and then Paine out LBW with the ball hammering in to leg stump. If you can't have the best umpires, because of the need for neutrality, mistakes are what you get.



Back-to-back half centuries from Australia's super-sub, two innings during which Marnus Labuschagne has taken a hit to his head and his groin for his country, make him an automatic selection when the fourth Test gets underway at Manchester next month.

Travis Head is safe, despite a Headingley duck to arguably the ball of the series so far. Marcus Harris is an opener and like Cameron Bancroft will get at least two Tests.

That leaves Khawaja, 99 runs so far in the series and Matthew Wade, who got a hundred at Edgbaston but nothing since, in the gun. It's a big second innings for both.


Injured England bowler James Anderson is a chance to return in the fourth Ashes Test.
Injured England bowler James Anderson is a chance to return in the fourth Ashes Test.



The veteran England superstar looked a long-shot to play any part in the first four Tests when he limped off with a calf injury after four overs at Edgbaston.

Anderson just turned 37 and just recovered from a calf injury, the one they call the "old man's injury" when he broke down again.

But durability has been a key factor in Anderson's 149-Test, 575-wicket career, and after taking two wickets for a Lancashire second XI on Tuesday, he's been slotted in for another four day game for his county, in a "friendly" against Durham next week.

Anderson has a stand named after him at Old Trafford, so Jimmy Anderson bowling from the Jimmy Anderson end at Manchester is a distinct possibility.

News Corp Australia

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