As Australia retained the Ashes using a Evaluation to play, despite falling to a 185-run conquer england captain Joe Root praised his team’s personality and fight with.
The hosts began the day 18-2 needing to bat out 98 overs to pull out an improbable draw in a sold-out Old Trafford and Joe Denly (53) and Jason Roy (31) battled for 80 seconds before the latter was shot by Pat Cummins.
Although Ben Stokes (1) was unable to replicate his Headingley heroics, Jos Buttler made a fighting 34 off 111 balls, Jack Leach laboured for 12 off 54 and final man out Craig Overton spent just under three hours at the crease for his 21 off 105 balls.
“I thought we showed great character, battle and belief in what we needed to attain today,” Root said. “I could not be more proud of this effort the men put in today.
“It was a resilient performance but unfortunately it was not enough. Just like last week at Headingley we believed and we try our hardest.
“You always can settle back and look at different areas of the sport where you could have done things differently but from the point of view I am very proud.
“When you’re in the position we were in the beginning of the day, the way the guys fought as hard as they did, you learn much about your own team, it shows that the personality and everyone stood up and played with bravely.”
Root believes there’s plenty for England to play for with Test Championship points on the line and a draw at the show despite Australia having already gained the Ashes.
The England captain included the seam bowlers during the series’ dominance was revealing Test cricket at its summit.
“It is challenging to take dropping the Ashes at this stage but we need to be certain we pick ourselves up and down up at The Oval,” he explained.
“It had been yet another fantastic Test match and it is quite disappointing and we have to make sure we pick ourselves up and turn up for what’s still quite a huge game for all of us at The Oval.
“We’ve seen some terrific Test cricket on the span of this show so far and I hope the same to be the case at The Oval, it’s still a huge game for us. We want to make sure the string levels and a Test championship is to play as well.
“I think every seamer has put all batters under stress throughout the show, bar Steve Smith. It has been hard work but that’s Test cricket at its finest.
“You expect it to be hard and you expect guys to challenge your defence and make life hard for you. It’s been one of the summers where batting has been challenging and you have had to work for the runs.”
Watch day one of the final and fifth Ashes Test between England and Australia live from 10am on Thursday on Sky Sports The Ashes, September 12.

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