LONDON • Stuart Broad took eight wickets as Australia collapsed to a scarcely credible 60 all out on the first day of the fourth Ashes cricket Test at Trent Bridge yesterday.
Cloudy overhead conditions offered some assistance to swing and seam bowlers. And they doubtless prompted the decision of England captain Alastair Cook to field first.
But they were not unplayable.
Well though Broad, on his Nottinghamshire home ground, bowled in taking a Test-best eight for 15 in 9.3 overs, this innings cemented the reputation of Australia's batsmen as "flat-track bullies". They again proved unable to come to terms with the moving ball in a match they have to at least draw to stop England from taking an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the five-match series.
Eight Australia batsmen were caught in the slip cordon - all off Broad - and one by wicket-keeper Jos Buttler, with Peter Nevill bowled by Steven Finn.
Mitchell Johnson (13) and captain Michael Clarke (10) were the only batsmen to make double figures in an innings that was wrapped up in just 18.3 overs - the quickest any team have ever been bowled out in the first innings of a Test - during a stunning 94 minutes' play in Nottingham.
Australia's total - with extras the top score on 14 - was the lowest by either side in an Ashes innings since England were dismissed for 52 at The Oval in 1948.
"It's pretty unbelievable. It's not sunk in," Broad told Sky Sports after drawing level with England great Fred Trueman's career tally of 307 Test wickets.
"We knew Trent Bridge would offer us something but we had to bowl well and take our catches."
Australian great Shane Warne and former captain Ricky Ponting lamented technical failings and mental approach as their countrymen fell cheaply.
Warne believes some of the problems stem from the increased amount of limited-overs cricket being played.
"Test cricket is all about technique, the basics. And all about fighting. Credit to Broad, he forced a lot of those errors, but I still think Australia could have been a little bit more defensive and (shown) better technique," he said.
Ponting questioned why the Australians had talked before the series about how positive they were going to be.
"Why say it?" he said.
"You can be positive in defence.
"I don't know if they're confused about the way they want to play."
He added: "When conditions are like this, you just have to find a way to get through."
England were 99 for three at tea, with Joe Root on 33 and Jonny Bairstow on 2.
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS
ASHES, 4TH TEST
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