By India Today Sports Desk: Legendary Sri Lanka wicket-keeping batter Kumar Sangakkara has said that England will win the series 3-2 if they emerge victorious in Manchester. England are facing Australia in the fourth Test of the five-match Ashes 2023 series at Old Trafford in Manchester.
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Speaking to Sky Sports, Sangakkara said it’s been a while since he’s seen an Australian side perplexed on the field. At the end of Day 2, England led Australia by 67 runs after bowling them out for 317 in their first innings.
“With the ball, it’s been a long time since I have seen the Australians this perplexed on the field. Not knowing what to do, what fields to set and then bowling completely different from the fields set. It’s really affected them,” said Sangakkara.
He went on to say that if England wins in Manchester, they would take the series 3-2. England lost at Edgbaston and Lord’s but defeated the Aussies by three wickets at Headingley in Leeds.
“If England wins this Test then they are going to take the Ashes 3-2. If this goes England’s way, three days before the next Test, the memories and scars will stay. England have recognised when they are ahead and they have accelerated and taken the game away,” Sangakkara added.
Having bowled Australia out for 317 runs in the first innings, England opener Zak Crawley emerged as the star of the show, scoring a remarkable 189 runs. His performance was instrumental in England’s commanding total of 384 for 4, giving them a lead of 67 runs.
Crawley’s innings was a blend of luck and skill, with his first hundred runs coming off a flurry of fortunate shots. However, he soon found his rhythm, batting with an authority that left spectators and opponents alike in awe. His last 145 runs came off just 117 balls, demonstrating his aggressive approach and dominance over the Australian bowlers.
England’s captain, Joe Root, also contributed significantly to the team’s total, scoring a swift 84 off 95 balls before being bowled out by Hazlewood. Ben Stokes and Brook added to the tally, pushing England’s lead further.