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The Ashes’ main women’s event arrived on Thursday with day one of the one-off Test between Australia and England.

The series is subtly balanced at Manuka Oval after rain brutalized the T20 leg of the series, with two out of three matches failing.

It means Australia lead just 4-2 after a dominant nine wicket win in the series’ only completed T20 game last week.

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MATCH CENTER: Live Scoreboard, Australia vs England, Day One

England captain Heather Knight won the toss and chose to field first and the call paid off immediately, taking two wickets within the first four overs.

Star Aussies opener goalkeeper Alyssa Healy was caught bowling an eight-ball duck by Katherine Brunts in the third over. Four balls later, Beth Mooney gave Amy Jones her second catch and Anya Shrubsole ger first, with the lefthander out for three to leave the Aussies 2-4.

I think both layoffs we saw this morning are a bit of a lack of discipline from the Australians just following balls, two-time World Cup champion Julia Price told Fox Cricket.

The wickets brought together opener Rachel Haynes and all-rounder Ellyse Perry two of Australia’s most experienced players, with both players finding the edge as they warmed up in their respective innings.

But just as Perry looked dangerous, a short ball from Nat Sciver went big on the gun’s all-rounder whose top edge was caught on the leg side to fire her for 18.

Dead silence across Manuka and Australia because Perry, who has struggled for so long in England to get out in Ashes Test matches, got her…that’s huge, Mel Jones said in comment.

Alex Blackwell added: It really surprised Ellyse Perry, it came on her quickly and hit high on the bat and she just wasn’t ready for that pull shot.

The Aussies are 3-79 at lunchtime after 28 overs.

Things could have turned out worse for Australia with two missed opportunities shortly after Perry left.

The first was a Meg Lanning edge flying through the briefs, before Rachael Haynes was hit full by a Kate Cross inswinger.

England believed there was an inside edge at first, but replays said otherwise.

It casts in line, hits the toad first, that’s on to hit the stumps, Isa Guha said. That’s a miss for England.

In the 24th over, England was guilty of a shocking lbw review about Lanning. England lost the rating because taking a ball showed the impact was drastically outside the line of off-stump.

During the lunch strike, Lanning was dropped from Sophie Ecclestone’s bowling alley on the first slip by Heather Knight.


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Australia XI: Rachael Haynes, Alyssa Healy (wk), Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Meg Lanning (c), Tahlia McGrath, Ashleigh Gardner, Annabel Sutherland, Jess Jonassen, Alana King, Darcie Brown

England XI: Tammy Beaumont, Lauren Winfield-Hill, Heather Knight (c), Nat Sciver, Sophia Dunkley, Amy Jones (wk), Katherine Brunt, Charlie Dean, Anya Shrubsole, Sophie Ecclestone, Kate Cross


January 27-30, 10am: Test match, Manuka Oval

Thursday 3 February, 2.10 pm: First ODI, Manuka Oval

Sunday, February 6, 10:05 AM: Second ODI, Junction Oval

Tuesday, February 8, 10:05 AM: Third ODI, Junction Oval

Follow all the action in our live blog below, or click here if you can’t see the blog.


Australia made a huge selection call, with gun bowler Megan Schutt surprisingly not being selected for the one-off Test. NSW fast bowler Trent Copeland labeled it an aggressive selection call on Twitter.

Cricket Australia told reporters conditioning was a concern for Schutt after dealing with COVID-19 earlier this month. Selectors were reluctant to risk her with ODIs to get into this series and the ODI World Cup in New Zealand.

That’s a huge blow, Isa Guha told Fox Cricket.

In fact, Darcie Brown will lead the charge, perhaps with Ellyse Perry, who hasn’t had much cricket in this one.

Leg spinner Alana King will make her Test debut, while skipper Meg Lanning has dropped the batting order to number 5.

The test match has the highest value of the series with four points available to the winner.

It means Australia can win the Ashes in Canberra, but similarly, England can take the lead with three ODIs left.

Regardless, teams may need to make progress early in the test with up to 15 millimeters of rain and a storm forecast in Canberra for day three.

There will be a sense of vicious deja vu for England, which is haunting the series in Australia, nearly two years after its 2020 T20 World Cup campaign was destroyed by the rain in Sydney.

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McGrath shines in early Ashes win | 03:35

Meanwhile, Australian star Beth Mooney still can’t eat without the help of a straw and blender, but that hasn’t stopped her from planning the demise of the English bowling attack on day one.

A wayward cricket ball broke Mooney’s jaw in training earlier this month and captain Meg Lanning said the star-studded recovery had inspired the Aussies ahead of their clash with their most bitter rival.

It’s pretty incredible. From the moment she was hit, she was quite positive about the whole situation, Lanning said ahead of the test.

She looks really good in the nets and in the field, so her confident shield has no problems getting ahead.

To come back to play international cricket about a week after jaw surgery is quite inspiring for the group.

< style="display:block;padding-top:56.25%"/>Australian staff have been keeping a close eye on Mooney.  Photo: Mark Evans/Getty Images
Australian staff have been keeping a close eye on Mooney. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

Australias dietitian, doctor and physiotherapist have devised a meal plan to fuel Mooney for the long days at the height in the nation’s capital.

She is currently only on a liquid diet, which doesn’t sound like a lot of fun. Not much variety, Lanning said.

Obviously with a Testmatch, the longer format, you need to have a long period of time (energy) at your disposal, of course, but they did a great job.

Moons has made it through very well, so be ready to go.

Speaking of the rain, Lanning said the chance of wet weather plays no part in Australias game plan.

We came here to win, no doubt about it, she said.

That’s all we’ve been talking about for the past few days; how can we best achieve a win.

There’s a little bit of weather around, but I don’t think there’s any reason why we can’t make up for that in the four days if we have a little bit of time.

Pretty confident and get a good amount of time through the game.




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