The Ashes - Second Test, Day Four: Root holds the key for the visitors ahead of an incredibly tense final day at Adelaide

The Ashes - Second Test, Day Four: Root holds the key for the visitors ahead of an incredibly tense final day at Adelaide

Root finished day four 67 not out in Adelaide with the tourists needing a further 178 runs to win the game and level the series.

Brandon Sayer

England's incredible fightback in Adelaide against Australia means that the final day of the second test is set to be tense as the visitors require another 178 runs to level the series at 1-1.

The real hopes for the tourists though will rely on Joe Root, who finished the day 67 not out as the visitors reached 176-4 at the end of play chasing 354 to win the game.

The reason England have the chance to win is down to their bowling effort in the third innings as they bowled the hosts out for 138 in their second innings with James Anderson taking five wickets and Chris Woakes taking four wickets.

Anderson and Woakes bowled the Aussies out for 138 in the opening session of the day

Day four at Adelaide started with the Aussies on 53-4 in their second innings, with a lead of 268 runs, with Peter Handscomb three not out and Nathan Lyon also three not out.

The pair frustrated the visitors for a little while in the morning until Anderson removed Lyon for 14 and Handscomb for 12 to leave the score on 75-6.

Woakes then removed Tim Paine soon after for 11 which meant that Shaun Marsh was left with work to do for the Aussies to get the lead over 350.

It was going well for Marsh with Mitchell Starc given him good support until Woakes removed Marsh for 19.

Soon after that Anderson removed Starc for 20 to give the pace bowler his first five wicket haul in Australia.

Craig Overton then got the final Australian wicket to fall on the stroke of tea by removing Josh Hazlewood for three to bowl the hosts out for 138 leaving the visitors needing 354 runs to win the game.

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Cook and Stoneman got the visitors off to a solid start before both fell in quick succession

After tea, England began their run chase in great fashion as openers Alistair Cook and Mark Stoneman put on a half century stand to open the innings.

Both batsmen were looking comfortable until Lyon trapped Cook LBW for 16 and Starc removed Stoneman for 36 in quick succession.

That brought Root and James Vince together at the crease and the pair saw the visitors to 68-2 at dinner time still needing 286 runs to win.

Vince fell early in the final session of the day before Root and Malan put of a half century stand

After dinner, Vince and Root resumed the visitors innings and just as they started to up the scoring rate, a loose shot from Vince saw Starc remove him for 15.

That brought Dawid Malan to the crease to join Root and despite the Aussies stopping runs from being scored quickly, the pair found a way through it as they took their partnership past the 50 mark.

Root also brought up his own half century in the process as the Aussies started to show their frustration for the first time in the match.

Cummins removed Malan late in the day but Root remained 67 not out to give England hope of levelling the series on the final day

Just as it looked like there would be no further wickets to fall before the end of the day, Pat Cummins got the breakthrough for the hosts as he removed Malan for 29 to break the partnership of 78.

Therefore, at the close of play, England finished on 176-4, needing a further 178 runs to pull off the record chase, but with Root 67 not out overnight they had real hope of achieving it.