Siddle, Clark rout England
LEEDS: Peter Siddle took his Test-best figures and Stuart Clark marked his return to international cricket with three wickets as Australia bowled out England for just 102 here at Headingley on Friday.
England, who won the toss, were routed on the first day of the fourth Ashes Test with Siddle taking 5-21 in 9.5 overs and Clark 3-18 in 10. Australia, looking to level the five-match Ashes series at 1-1, were 69-1 at tea -- a deficit of 33 runs. Shane Watson, who cut the first two balls of the tourists innings for four after James Anderson pitched too short, was 24 not out and Australia captain Ricky Ponting 39 not out off just 50 balls with a six and nine fours.
Clark took three wickets in quick succession as England collapsed to 72-6 at lunch before Siddle polished off the tail with four wickets for three runs in 14 balls. Matt Prior (37 not out) and opener Alastair Cook (30) were the only batsmen to make it into double figures in a total featuring four noughts during an innings that lasted less than 34 overs.
England's total was their lowest in a Test against Australia at Headingley in 100 years following the 87 they made here in 1909. Stephen Harmison, recalled after England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff was ruled out with a longstanding knee injury and playing his first Test since February, struck with his fourth ball when Simon Katich was caught by a diving Ravi Bopara, well-placed at short backward square leg, for nought.
Harmison then beat Ponting on the outside edge. But Ponting, despite he now customary booing which accompanied him out to the middle, pulled Graham Onions's first ball for six and next ball struck him for four. He then pulled first-change Onions's fifth ball in front of square for another four with 17 runs coming off the Durham quick's first over.
Ponting, then took advantage of a short ball, this time from James Anderson, to pull a boundary that brought up a second-wicket fifty stand
in 69 balls with a six and nine fours. Harmison, apart, the England bowlers were unable
to maintain a threatening
line and length as Australia's quicks had done.
Earlier, Clark made a dramatic return in what was his first Test in nine months after an elbow injury and selectorial preference had kept him out. The 33-year-old is renowned for his economical accuracy and such was his control in taking three wickets for five runs in 21 balls.