England need to battle to survive

PERTH - England batsman Alastair Cook scored his maiden Ashes century to force the third Test into the final day and stall Australia's bid to wrap up the series yesterday.

PERTH - England batsman Alastair Cook scored his maiden Ashes century to force the third Test into the final day and stall Australia's bid to wrap up the series yesterday.

Cook held the Australian bowlers at bay for six and a half hours before departing - just before the close for 116 - as the tourists clawed their way to the close on 265 for five but still in deep trouble.

Ian Bell also offered some stubborn resistance with a fighting 87 and Kevin Pietersen was not out 37 at the end after Paul Collingwood made just five and nightwatchman Matthew Hoggard still to score.

England need to score a world-record fourth innings total of 557 to win the match or bat through the last day to salvage a draw and keep their Ashes defence alive after losing the first two Tests. - Reuters

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