Marsh leads Australia to 195-run lead on day one of 3rd Ashes test Loop Jamaica

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LEEDS, England (AP) — Mitch Marsh celebrated his test comeback by smashing a century and taking a wicket as Australia led England by 195 runs after day one of the third Ashes test at Headingley on Thursday.

Marsh’s scintillating run-a-ball 118 rescued Australia from 85-4. To put it in perspective, the allrounder and Travis Head combined for 155 runs. The rest of the team scored 108.

After Marsh was out on the stroke of tea at 240-5, Australia collapsed to be all out for 263 with fast bowler Mark Wood in his test return taking 5-34.

Marsh capped an unforgettable day in his first test in four years when he got England’s third wicket when Zac Crawley nicked off.

England were 68-3 at stumps, trailing by 195 runs in the must-win match. On their home ground, Joe Root was on 19 and Jonny Bairstow on 1.

Marsh appeared to be making up for lost time.

He was picked after Cameron Green was sidelined by a minor hamstring strain following the win at Lord’s last weekend. No pressure was put on Marsh. He has excelled in Twenty20s and one-dayers since he was dropped from the test side in 2019. He had only four first-class matches in four years, but in the last one in March in Perth he scored an unbeaten 108.

He walked in with England in rampant mood after winning the toss and sending in Australia on a greentop.

Headingley was loud and lit up as David Warner gave his wicket to Stuart Broad for the 16th time in the day’s first over; Usman Khawaja was bowled by a 94.6 mph delivery by Mark Wood, Marnus Labuschagne was squared up by Chris Woakes and edged to first slip, and Steve Smith feathered an edge behind off Broad in his 100th test.

Marsh got to lunch on 5 with Head on 10. Head was dropped on 9 by Bairstow, who also dropped Smith in another poor display of keeping.

Then Marsh got his own slice of luck. Root spilled Marsh on 12. Marsh didn’t give another chance in a game-turning counterattack.

He hit 17 boundaries and four sixes, adding up to 92 runs of his 118.

He drove Broad through the covers, drove Woakes straight on, smashed Ollie Robinson behind point, and pulled a shoulder-high Wood bouncer over deep square for six.

His 50 came off 59 balls. The 100 stand with Head came from 118 balls. They silenced Headingley as they rallied Australia.

Robinson left injured during his 12th over. Wood bowled only three overs in the middle session and for 22 runs.

Marsh reached 99 with a six over long on off Moeen Ali and, next ball, achieved his third test century — all against England. He was ecstatic. He took 102 balls.

In the last over before tea, he fell to Woakes at 240-5. An inside edge clipped his thigh pad and looped to Zac Crawley at second slip.

Head also fell to Woakes soon after tea for 39.

Root had just dropped Alex Carey on 4. When he caught Head, he threw the ball down in disgust. Root would then drop Carey again on 5 at short leg. Root and Bairstow dropped five chances on the day.

But the return of Wood wrapped up Australia quickly, inside 61 overs. From 240-4 before tea, the last six wickets fell for 23 runs.

Wood grabbed the last four wickets, a spell of 4-5 from 16 balls. He walked off holding the ball aloft after his first five-for in a home test.

In his first test of the series, his slowest ball was 88 mph and fastest 96 mph. His average of 90.4 mph was the quickest across an innings in England since Australia’s Brett Lee in 2005.

Australia captain Pat Cummins showed his guile in England’s reply when he got a thick edge off Ben Duckett for 2 in the fourth over and another edge off Harry Brook for 3 in the sixth over.

Marsh bagged Crawley to reduce England to 65-3 but Root and Bairstow batted safely to stumps after a rough day in the field.