Ashes cricket 2022, fifth Test live updates, Hobart weather: ’Truly brilliant’: Travis Head’s utter madness

Aussie batter Travis Head was batting on another pitch to everyone else as he cemented his future under the Baggy Green.

Welcome to our live coverage of day one of the fifth Ashes Test between Australia and England in Hobart.

The rain has set in on the final session of an absorbing day of Test cricket.

Australia was reduced to 3/12 early in the match but Marnus Labsuchagne (44), Travis Head (101) and Cameron Green (74) turned the match on its head.

The match is a historic fixture for Tasmanian cricket fans — this will be Hobart’s first Ashes Test and first international pink-ball match.

The Aussies were unable to claim victory at the SCG last week, but although the whitewash dream is over, Pat Cummins and Co. will be hoping to secure a 4-0 Ashes triumph at Blundstone Arena.

Meanwhile, England is still searching for its first Test win on Australia soil since January 2011 — the Poms have not tasted victory in 14 consecutive Tests Down Under.

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Rain ruins final session

The rain has come in midway through the final session of the day.

Australia are 6/241, with only Cameron Green was dismissed for 74 off 109 balls.

It spoiled his chance for his first century but undoubtedly cemented his place as the Aussie number 6 and all-rounder going forward.

‘Truly brilliant’: Aussie’s utter madness

Coming in at 3/12, Travis Head has smashed a 112-ball century that made him look like he was batting on a different wicket to everyone else.

Head brought up his century after thrashing 12 fours in a brisk innings that as he tormented England’s bowlers.

Having had a question mark against his name before the series, Head has cemented his spot at No. 5 with his second century of the series, having belted 349 runs at an average of 69.80, topping all run scorers this Ashes despite only having had five innings.

Unfortunately, the next ball he was out to a leading edge, but Australia was thrilled as the middle order stood up to get Australia out of trouble.

Head shared a 121 run stand with Cameron Green as the Aussies reached 2015 at tea.

Green was 57, Alex Carey on 1.

Counter attack Australia needed’: Aussies right the ship

Travis Head has hit a backs to the wall 50 to bring Australia right back into the match.

Coming to the crease at 3/12, he smashed his 50 off just 53 balls, making it seem like he was batting on a different pitch to the rest of the Aussies.

The 28-year-old has cemented his place in the Australian Test side this Ashes however, dominating the English attack yet again.

Australia are 4/127 off 32 overs.

Smith can’t help himself after viral ‘calamity’

Marnus Labuschagne has been dismissed in one of the most bizarre dismissals you will see in Test cricket.

He and Steve Smith have made careers on taking on the bowler laterally across the crease, but a slippery green Blundstone Oval pitch has undone the Aussie star.

Having helped Australia rebound along with Travis Head, Labuschagne moved a long way across but slipped at just the wrong moment, ending up flat on his stomach as the ball from Stuart Broad cannoned into middle stump.

Laughing, Fox Cricket’s Michael Vaughan said “I’ve never ever seen this in Test cricket”, saying he “tripped over his own feet”.

Mike Hussey added: “That is one of the most bizarre dismissals you’ll ever see in Test cricket.”

Labuschagne was out for 44 off 53 balls.

Social media was blown away.

The Twitter account for Flash Cricket even posted that the Aussies were enjoying the vision of the dismissal with Steve Smith and Pat Cummins sharing a laugh when it happened.

Australia got into the dinner break at 4/85, a long way from the 3/12 they were after 9.5 overs.

‘Counter attack Australia needed’: Aussies right the ship

After a terrifying first hour, the gremlins seem to have lessened in Hobart as Marnus Labuschagne and Travis Head get Australia back in the game.

The pair have raced to 37 off 41 for Labuschange and 23 off 17 for Head after 18 overs.

It was after the side was 3/12.

It’s now 3/68 and on Triple M Cricket, Gus Worland declared it “the counter attack Australia needed.”

‘Disastrous’: Warner’s historic shocker

Ollie Robinson has snared the early breakthrough for England, removing the dangerous David Warner for a 22-ball duck.

The pink Kookaburra was seaming viciously off the Hobart deck, and Robinson finally got one to catch the outside edge of Warner’s bat. Zak Crawley made no mistakes at second slip.

It was Robinson’s 10th scalp of the series, Warner’s 10th duck in Test cricket and the first time Warner has been dismissed for a duck in an Ashes Test in Australia.

And while also his most balls faced for a duck, it was also a slice of history as the most balls for a duck faced by an Aussie opener in history.

His 22 balls beat Shaun Marsh’s 21-ball duck against India in 2017, and Sammy Jones’ 20-ball globe against England in 1888.

The news got worse for the Aussies as Marnus Labuschagne was dropped for zero before Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith following in quick succession as the side dropped to 3-12.

On a green top in a cool Hobart with clouds overhead, England are making the most of British-like conditions.

Final Ashes Test underway

The fifth Ashes Test between Australia and England is underway, and paceman Stuart Broad got the historic fixture underway by falling face first onto the pitch.

The delivery had struck Australian opener David Warner high on the pad, and Broad couldn’t resist turning back for a cheeky appeal.

England wins toss

England captain Joe Root has won the toss and elected to bowl first.

Australia has made one change to its starting XI, while the visitors have swapped out five players due to injury and form.

The first ball will take place at 3.30pm local time — rain permitting.

Australia XI: David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins (c), Mitch Starc, Scott Boland, Nathan Lyon

England XI: Rory Burns, Zak Crawley, Dawid Malan, Joe Root (c), Ben Stokes, Ollie Pope, Sam Billings (wk), Chris Woakes, Ollie Robinson, Mark Wood, Stuart Broad

Toss to take place in 20 minutes

Cricket Australia has confirmed that the toss will take place at 3pm local time, in about 20 minutes from now.

Covers coming off

The covers are starting to be dragged off by curators at Blundstone Arena.

Still no official confirmation on a time for the toss.

England debutant handed maiden cap

Wicketkeeper Sam Billings looks sets to make his Test debut at Blundstone Arena, with veteran seamer James Anderson presenting the 30-year-old with his maiden cap before play.

He becomes England’s 700th men’s Test cricketer.

Billings has scored 3327 first-class runs at 34.29, including six centuries and 15 fifties.

Bad news, cricket fans

There’s light raining in Hobart, and the covers are on at Blundstone Arena.

The toss, which was scheduled for 2.30pm AEDT, has been delayed.

Adorable 28-year cricket snap goes viral

Marcus Harris will not feature in the series finale, with Usman Khawaja set to open the batting alongside childhood mate David Warner.

Khawaja has opened the batting on seven occasions at Test level, scoring 484 runs at 96.80, including two centuries and two fifties.

The Queensland captain and Warner have scored 1348 Test runs at the crease together, boasting an average partnership of 53.92.

The Khawaja-Warner bonds extends back 28 years, with the duo playing alongside each other at junior level.

On Thursday evening, Warner posted an adorable image of himself and Khawaja in cricket whites from when they were kids.

“The 90s just seemed way easier,” Warner captioned the photo.
Warner’s wife Candice commented: “What a journey you have both been on to get to where you are. Enjoy the moment and walk out there for those two little boys who used to hit balls against the wall at Waverley Oval.”

Former Australian batter Matthew Hayden replied: “Now that is a priceless pic.”

Khawaja’s wife Rachel responded: “This is too good.”

The post received more than 343,000 likes in 15 hours.

Former Australian U19 assistant coach Matthew Mott, who mentored the pair as teenagers, told The Daily Telegraph: “They both really call it how they see it. Davey will admit he’s quite brash in his openness about how honest he is. If Uzzie is ever asked what he thinks, he won’t say what’s popular, he’ll say what he thinks is right.

“And they’re both really good family men. Having just been down in that (Australian team) bubble, seeing them with their young families that was pretty cool. They’re very good fathers and very good husbands and they’ve got a very strong sense of family.”

Although Harris has been axed from the starting XI, Cummins is adamant the Victorian’s Test career isn’t over.

“The message to Harry is we think he’s going really well. It’s really tough on him,” he told reporters at Blundstone Arena on Thursday.

“Uzzie and Davey have really earned that spot to open the batting, but the reality is they’re both 35 years old.

“While that doesn’t mean anything in the short-term, there will be a day when we need to find some other openers.

“Marcus still absolutely has got a huge future with us. He’ll be, I’m sure around the squad.

“There might even be an Aussie A squad going overseas in the off-season; there will be Shield cricket, county cricket, lots of opportunities.

“This is probably more of a case of someone demanding a spot rather than Marcus losing a spot due to form.

“It’s not too often someone comes in and hits two hundreds in the same game.”

Green Hobart pitch turns heads

When the covers were removed on Friday afternoon, curators were greeted by a green seamer at Blundstone Arena.

The Hobart deck replicated something cricketers would expect to see in New Zealand, with a thick cover of grass.

Seamers from both sides would be licking their lips, particularly considering the overcast conditions in the Tasmanian capital.

“It looks quite green with a nice covering of grass, but it’s quite flat,” former Australian spinner Shane Warne said on Fox Cricket.

“So I think both captains if they win the toss would like to bat first, but I reckon they might want to lose it too because there might be a little bit in this early.”

Originally published as Live: ‘Truly brilliant’ Travis Head out ball after bringing up century

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