Australia 4/9 to wrap up series

  • By: Andy Schooler
  • Last Updated: December 13 2013, 22:58 GMT

Australia are closing in on regaining the Ashes after ending the first day of the third Test at a best of 4/9 to take victory and with it, the series.

Steve Smith led Australia from 143 for five to 326 for six
Steve Smith led Australia from 143 for five to 326 for six

England started well enough in Perth after losing the toss, reducing Australia to 143 for five, but Steve Smith, with an unbeaten 103, Brad Haddin and Mitchell Johnson dug the hosts out of a hole and they finished on 326 for six.

Already 2-0 up in the five-match series, Australia had started the match around the 4/6 mark. They drifted to 10/11 in-running as wickets fell, but by the close they had hardened to a best of 4/9 with BetVictor.

England could be backed at 11/2 with Stan James and bet365 come stumps, with the draw offered at a general 9/2.

Betfred drew their Australia total runs line at 424.5, betting 5/6 either side of that mark.

Ian Bell, Kevin Pietersen and Alastair Cook can all be backed at 4/1 to be England's top batsman when the tourists take to the crease, presumably on Saturday.

England, who need to win this game and the two remaining others to take the series, will look to avoid the middle-order collapses which have undermined their campaign so far.

  • Posted at 1020 GMT on 13/12/2013.