Three Lions grind out dour batting performance.
England have reached tea on day three at The Oval 181-3 as they look to eek out a draw rather than push for a 4-0 series victory over Australia.
The tourists were able to earn a pair of valuable wickets to keep some interest in the game, as the run-rate hovered around two for the session.
Nathan Lyon got rid of Joe Root for 68 after the Englishman went to sweep a ball that bounced more than he expected, gifting a top edge to Shane Watson at short backward square.
Root went to sweep from an off stump line but it kicked up a little and he couldn’t control the stroke getting a top edge which chipped to the fielder who didn’t have to move, as the score moved to 118-2.
Jonathan Trott and Kevin Pietersen did not push the run-rate at all during their partnership as they looked to survive until the next break.
However, with the new ball cam an opportunity for Mitchell Starc to get into the game and he snatched it, dismissing Trott.
Trott was hit in line by an in-swinging ball from the left-arm pace man and was given out by Aleem Dar on field.
After some consultation Trott elected to have the call reviews, with replays showing the ball going on too hit the stumps despite some doubt of where it pitched in line or it had swing too much.
However, again Trott departed for a below-average score to continue his run out of out as he was sent packing for 40 and the score became 176-3.
Pietersen made it to tea on 29 not out and he will be joined by Ian Bell (4 not out) after the resumption with England still 311 behind Australia’s first innings.