The Ashes 2021: UK media stunned in Boxing Day drama test, admits Australia finished Ashes

English media are stunned by the dramatic events of the second day of the Boxing Day test and admit the ashes are almost decided.

Led by fast champion James Anderson, England had revived their Ashes hopes at the MCG, knocking out Australia for 267 and taking down the middle for their second dig behind by 82.

But quick left-arm Mitchell Starc and Test debutant Scott Boland erased the hard work England had done, each taking a pair of wickets to teeter the tourists 4-31 at the stumps.

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Already facing a 2-0 series deficit and still needing 52 points to force Australia through again, England’s hopes of reclaiming the ballot box look all but dashed.

Haseeb Hameed was one of four England dismissed in a crazy final hour on matchday two. (Getty)

“The English bowlers did a fantastic job of putting England back in the game. All they needed and wanted was for the English batters to get up. But they didn’t – they fell again,” said BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew.

“What time it was. I’m still coming down from it. It was test cricket at its brutal best.”

Former England captain Michael Vaughan added: “Test cricket is by far the toughest and toughest format… This last hour tested every facet of a player’s game! It’s also difficult to replicate that atmosphere. in other formats”.

The Telegraph’s Nick Hoult marveled at the electrifying display of Australian rapids.

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“It was an hour of adrenaline-fueled test cricket at its most engrossing as Australia’s fast bowlers threw their side touching distance to hold back the ashes,” Hoult wrote.

“It left England reeling 31 for four, 51 behind Australia and all of James Anderson’s shovel work undone in 12 series of bleeds that captivated an MCG crowd banging on hoardings and chairs plastic, roaring Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc every step of the way.”

READ MORE: Root’s future at stake amid Ashes calamity

Scott Boland shone for Australia late in the second day. (Getty)

Perhaps England’s two most accomplished batters, captain Joe Root and the versatile Ben Stokes, will take their position at the start of day three.

But Lawrence Booth of the Daily Mail admitted that even such a classy duo could not save England.

“Thanks to a dazzling new ball spell from Starc and a dramatic penultimate of the day from home hero Boland, the Aussies got one step closer to their goal,” Booth wrote.

“England were 31 from four and – despite having Joe Root and Ben Stokes in – all but disappeared.”

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