Australia dominate England again to take control of Adelaide Test

Visitors lose last eight wickets for 86 runs after Malan and Root hit fifties

England's batsmen failed to make an impact yet again and succumbed to a familiar collapse as Australia took a commanding lead in the second Ashes Test in Adelaide.

Aussie left-arm quick Mitchell Starc took 4-37 in another successful day-night Test outing as England capitulated from 150-2 to be all out for 236 in reply to Australia’s first-innings total of 473-9 declared.

Australia stand-in captain Steve Smith decided against enforcing the follow-on and the hosts went to stumps at 45-1 for a lead of 282.

England seemed set for a big first innings total as Dawid Malan (80) and captain Joe Root (62) looked good for three figures.

However, all-rounder Cameron Green broke the stand when he had Root caught by Smith at first slip.

It soon got worse for the visitors as Malan slashed a Starc delivery that he should have left with Smith again the fielder.

Ollie Pope (five) survived a review but squeezed a Nathan Lyon (3-58) delivery to Marnus Labuschagne fielding close in and, moments later, Jos Buttler fell for a duck to Starc.

Off-spinner Lyon also dismissed Chris Woakes and Ollie Robinson as England lost their last eight wickets for 86 runs.

Australia remain unbeaten in the eight pink-ball Tests. And Starc has been a big factor in it. No bowler enjoys using the pink ball as much as the left-hander, who has now taken 50 wickets -18 ahead of next-best Josh Hazlewood - at an average of 18.10 in day-night games.

“We’ve got a bit of a luxury of having played eight Tests and [six] have been here,” Starc said. “I don’t think I’ve nailed it. But we’ve all got a certain plan to it.”

Malan said he was gutted to again fail to convert a 50 into a century and warned England must learn to convert good starts into big scores if they want to win Tests.

It was the second Test in a row that both Malan and Root appeared headed for centuries but then threw their wickets away. Root made 89 in the first Test in Brisbane and Malan 82.

"We talk about getting 20 wickets or what have you, but in Australia there's big runs to be had and big hundreds win you Test matches," Malan said.

"In the last match both Rooty and myself were in a position to score hundreds and we didn't do it, and we were in the same position here and both times we've been found short as a batting unit compared to the Australian batting unit.

"So that's something we must do better from this next innings onwards, that if someone gets in, to make sure that we get that big 100."

Updated: December 18th 2021, 2:05 PM