Opener Joe Root hit two fours in the first over after the break, before the visitors’ attack gave England’s batsmen few chances to score. Root and Jonathan Trott crept to a 50-run partnership before Root top-edged a sweep and was caught off the bowling of spinner Nathan Lyon. His score of 68 was the 22-year-old’s second-highest of the series.
Pietersen joined Trott at the crease and found runs hard to come by with his 29 coming off 82 balls.
Australia opted to take the second new ball at the earliest opportunity, handing it to fast-bowler Mitchell Starc in the last over before tea. The decision paid off as Trott was out leg-before-wicket on Starc’s first delivery. Bell, who has scored three centuries in the series, is not out on four.
An extra eight overs is scheduled today, and on the final two days, making up for some of the play lost yesterday to rain.
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