England's Kevin Pietersen (113) and Ian Bell (60) steadied the England innings, but the hosts are still 34 runs short of avoiding the follow on at the end of Day 3 after ending on 294 for seven.
Day 3 of the third Ashes Test: How sessions unfolded at Old Trafford
England 119 for four England's underwhelming efforts with the bat continued as Jonathan Trott's frustrating series showed no signs of letting up as he failed to get his bat out of the way of a Ryan Harris, pictured, delivery and was caught at slip. The Australians, needing to win this Test to keep their hopes of claiming the Ashes alive, smelled blood, but were met by the positive batting of Kevin Pietersen, who struck 33 off 51 balls to keep the scoreboard ticking over. But England suffered a blow just before lunch as captain Alastair Cook feathered a catch down the legside off Mithcel Starc to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.
England 211 for four With England in serious danger of failing to avoid the follow on, Pietersen did what he usually does when his back is against the wall. He hit out. Two sixes in succession off Nathan Lyon signalled his approach. He and Ian Bell put on a hundred partnership for the fifth wicket, with Bell maintaining the excellent form that had seen him score hundreds in the first two Tests. He reached his fifty just before tea as Australia endured their first wicketless session of the match.
England 294 for seven Just as it looked like England were taking the initiative, Bell was sent back, courtesy of a Harris inswinger before Starc stepped up to take the prized wicket of Pietersen lbw on 113. A review could not save the England batsman, replays showing no inside edge. Jonny Bairstow scored 22 before he was dismissed after Shane Watson held on to a good catch off the bowling of Starc.
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