2017 Ashes: Australia claim 2-0 lead with Adelaide Test victory

By @saihoops on
2017 Ashes
Cricket - Ashes test match - Australia v England - Adelaide Oval, Adelaide, Australia, December 6, 2017. Australia's Mitchell Starc celebrates with team mates after bowling England's Jonny Bairstow to win the second Ashes cricket test match. Reuters / David Gray

Australia has taken a 2-0 series lead against England in the ongoing five-match Ashes Test series. Steve Smith's team completed a 120-run victory Wednesday in the inaugural day/night Ashes Test at the Adelaide Oval.

Chasing a fourth-innings target of 354, England were bowled out for 233, with only captain Joe Root (67) constructing a half-century. The visitors began the final day on an overnight score 176/4, with Root batting alongside night-watchman Chris Woakes. At the start of the day, England were still given fighting odds to level series, especially with Root at the crease. However, Aussie quick Josh Hazlewood (2/49) removed both Woakes and Root in quick succession before Mitchell Starc (5/88) wiped out the English tail.

At the end of the third day's play, Australia were heavily criticised for not enforcing the follow-on, missing out on a potential innings victory. Australia were bowled out for just 138 in their second innings as England's bowlers feasted on seaming conditions under floodlights, especially James Anderson, who claimed five wickets. Despite Smith's questionable captaincy, Australia have taken a near-unassailable lead in the series. 

Australia batsman Shaun Marsh was awarded Man of the Match for his valiant first-innings knock of 126 not out. Marsh helped Australia post a healthy total of 442/8 after the hosts were reeling at 209/5. "An unbelievable feeling to get a hundred on day two. Looking forward to Perth, 2-0 up, looking forward to recharging and having another crack," Marsh said after the victory.

England will now have to win three consecutive Tests to retain the urn. England skipper Joe Root is taking some positives into the third Test at Perth. "The way we went about everything yesterday was excellent, and that's got to be the benchmark for the rest of the series. It's disappointing not to do ourselves justice today. We have to make sure we are better next time."

The 2017 Ashes will move to the WACA Ground in Perth for the third Australia vs England Test starting Dec. 14. The Australians will have the opportunity to close out the series after claiming a 2-0 lead at Adelaide.