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Marsh century puts Australia firmly in control

196   //    03 Dec 2017, 13:27 IST
Australia veteran Shaun Marsh

Shaun Marsh celebrated a century and Australia moved past 400 as Joe Root's decision to bowl first was placed firmly in the spotlight at dinner on day two of the second Ashes Test on Sunday.

England captain Root won the toss and opted to send the Australians in to bat on Saturday and that decision seems to have badly backfired as the day-night match wears on in Adelaide.

Marsh, who survived an lbw dismissal thanks to DRS, punished England's tiring bowling attack, the veteran vindicating his Ashes selection with a classy ton to lead Australia to 409-7 before the final session.

It was Marsh's fifth Test ton and highest score on home soil since his 182 against West Indies in December 2015 – the 34-year-old bringing up the hundred with a superb pull shot off Chris Woakes.

While Australia added more runs to their tally, more importantly, Steve Smith's men frustrated England by keeping the tourists toiling away with little luck.

After digging deep alongside Tim Paine before tea and frustrating the English – the pair successfully overturning DRS decisions on 29 and 24 respectively – Marsh stepped it up a notch approaching dinner.

While Stuart Broad, who made the early breakthrough by dismissing Peter Handscomb in the first over on Sunday, got Mitchell Starc to pick out James Anderson at mid-on, it was one-way traffic.

Marsh – aided by Pat Cummins (44 not out) in another fine support act – played with patience and precision, picking apart the tourists' attack, and England's travails were neatly summed up just before the break when Woakes induced an edge from Marsh, only for Alastair Cook and James Vince to collide with each other and waste the chance.

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