Manchester: Australia stumbled to 145 for seven in the rain-affected fifth and final one-day International against England on Tuesday.
In treacherous batting conditions, George Bailey was Australia’s top scorer with 46 not out from 41 balls after hitting two sixes and three fours. Opener David Warner contributed with a fluent 32.
Part-time medium pacer Ravi Bopara took two for eight and spinner James Tredwell struck twice after England won the toss and chose to bowl at Old Trafford.
The match was reduced to a 32 over affair after rain delayed proceedings. For the record, England have an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series.
Talking about the match, Australia survived a tortuous early spell in which England dropped three catches in as many overs — only to lose four wickets for 12 runs.
Matthew Wade was spilled by Anderson at first slip when he edged Broad in the eighth over, and Warner was put down by Tredwell at second slip off Steven Finn an over later.
In the 10th over, Warner holed out to Stuart Broad, only for Samit Patel to miss an easy chance at third man. But England’s fielding then improved drastically.
Tredwell atoned for his error by removing Warner lbw for 32 at the start of the 11th and running out Peter Forrest for three at the start of the 15th, brilliantly gathering Patel’s throw and removing the bails in the same motion.
Two balls later, Wade wandered down the pitch to be deceived by Tredwell and stumped by Craig Kieswetter. In the next over, Eoin Morgan threw down the stumps from the covers to run out Australia skipper Michael Clarke for one.
Steve Smith added 21 from 20 balls before he was caught by Kieswetter after nudging a terrible first ball from Bopara down the leg side in the 20th over.
Bopara struck again in his next over, having David Hussey caught behind for nine, but England then wasted its review with an unsuccessful appeal for lbw from Tredwell against Bailey.
Bailey smacked a six from Tredwell in the 29th over, before James Pattinson was given after a lengthy delay by third umpire, caught behind off a bottom edge to Finn for 13 in the 30th over.
Australia took 25 from the last two overs, with Bailey smashing a six and a four off the last three balls from Anderson, but England need less than five runs an over to complete a series sweep of matches completed.