Carberry can’t spare England’s blushes

Michael Caberry scored 14 in England's second innings
Michael Caberry scored 14 in England's second innings
Jonny Bairstow, right, thanks skipper Eoin Morgan. Picture: Neil Marshall

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Michael Carberry was unable to help spare England’s blushes as Australia closed in on a 2-0 Ashes series lead.

The Hampshire opener, fresh from an impressive notch of 60 in the tourists’ first innings in Adelaide, could only muster 14 on day four of the second Test as England continued to struggle Down Under.

After Australia declared on 132 for three in their second innings, Carberry and captain Alastair Cook returned to the middle knowing that a herculean effort was needed if they were to come even close to the 531 target set for victory.

But when Cook fell for one as Mitchell Johnson continued his excellent series, and his opening partner followed suit shortly afterwards for 14 off the bowling of Peter Siddle, the writing was on the wall.

Joe Root (87) and former Hampshire ace Kevin Pietersen (53) offered some resistance.

However, when they were both dismissed – along with Ian Bell (6) – England knew they were fighting a losing battle.

At the close of play, the tourists reached 247 for six, with Matt Prior unbeaten on 31 and Stuart Broad 22 not out – and still 284 runs adrift of an unlikely victory.