Ashes 2023: Key targets as England and Australia eye victory on final day at Edgbaston

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The final day of the First LV= Insurance Men’s Ashes Test is on a knife edge

The drama and tension of the First LV= Insurance Men’s Ashes Test 2023 is set to go down to the wire. Both England and Australia are in strong positions to get off to a winning start in the series. 

Heavy rain is around the West Midlands at the moment, but with this set to clear by midday there should be plenty of time for a result. Both sides know exactly what they need to get the win. 

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Day four was the equivalent of a tug of war match, with both sides enjoying a spell on top. England battled to 273 all out leaving Australia with a victory target of 281. Usman Khawaja will be in the middle this morning but last night he saw Steve Smith, David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne all get out. Khawaja will resume on Day 5 on 34 with night watchman Scott Boland. 

Stuart Broad claimed two of the three wickets, with Ollie Robinson picking up the wicket of Warner. All three were caught behind by wicket keeper Jonny Bairstow. 

With the final day set to start in a matter of hours, the targets are clear. Australia need 174 runs whilst England need 7 wickets. It’s all set to be a cracking day. 

Ahead of the final day, England fast bowler Stuart Broad summed up just what today will be like for everyone involved. He said: “Tomorrow is one of those days when both teams will come to the ground with a genuine belief they can win the game which is a great place for Test match cricket to be.” 

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2005 rewind

England bowler Ollie Robinson celebrates the wicket of David Warner during day four of the LV= Insurance Ashes 1st Test Match between England and Australia at Edgbaston on June 19, 2023 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)England bowler Ollie Robinson celebrates the wicket of David Warner during day four of the LV= Insurance Ashes 1st Test Match between England and Australia at Edgbaston on June 19, 2023 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
England bowler Ollie Robinson celebrates the wicket of David Warner during day four of the LV= Insurance Ashes 1st Test Match between England and Australia at Edgbaston on June 19, 2023 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images) | Getty

The finely poised finale is giving a hint of a throwback to the dramatic Edgbaston test of 2005. On that occasion, which was also the first test in the series, England won an absolute thriller by just two runs. The target for Australia that day? 280. If history was to repeat itself, the new era of English Test Cricket would be given another huge seal of approval by many fans at home and around the world.   

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