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Last Updated: Sunday, 7 August 2005, 11:13 GMT 12:13 UK
England clinch thrilling victory
Second Test, Edgbaston (day four)
England 407 & 182 beat Australia 308 & 279 by two runs

Andrew Flintoff was man of the match after taking four wickets
England survived a last-ditch Australia fightback to complete a thrilling two-run victory in the second Test and level the Ashes series at 1-1.

Australia were on the brink of victory when last man Michael Kasprowicz gloved Steve Harmison behind for 20.

Kasprowicz and Brett Lee, who hit 43 not out, put on 59 for the last wicket, chasing a ground record target of 282.

Shane Warne had begun the day with a defiant 42 before he trod on his wicket playing back to Andrew Flintoff.

Man of the match Flintoff, who did the damage on the third day with an innings of 73 in England's second innings 182 then taking three wickets, finished with 4-79.

The result was the tightest ever by a runs margin in the 128-year history of the Ashes.

The last time England came from behind to level an Ashes series was in 1981, with the Ian Botham-inspired victory at Headingley, and they went on to win 3-1.

There are just three days for the teams to recover before they go into the next battle, at Old Trafford on Thursday.

Most of our guys thought the game had gone
Michael Vaughan

Australia were teetering on the brink as the day began but they refused to give up without a fight.

Warne and Lee shared a partnership of 45 in just nine overs, both mixing orthodox shots with some lucky nicks and edges.

And Kasprowicz looked anything but a number 11 batsman when he flayed spinner Ashley Giles over mid-off in an over that brought three boundaries.

Harmison was hit out of the attack and Giles fared little better as England stuck with defensive field placings and a standard slip cordon.

Pakistan's record of 79 runs made for the last two wickets to win a Test, secured against Australia in 1994, was in serious jeopardy.

Shane Warne hit a defiant 42
Warne hit a defiant 42 to frustrate England

England missed a chance to clinch victory when Simon Jones put down a difficult catch at third man from a Kasprowicz upper-cut off Flintoff with Australia 15 runs short.

When Flintoff over-stepped with his next delivery for a no ball and squirted four byes down the leg side, the match looked lost.

Lee batted on despite being struck two painful blows by Flintoff, first on the elbow and then on the left hand.

Harmison switched with more success to the City End but captain Michael Vaughan had little option but to persevere with him and Flintoff.

Flintoff got through 10 overs on the fourth morning, bowling at speeds clocked around 90mph despite the pain in his left shoulder.

And Harmison claimed the vital final wicket, keeper Geraint Jones tumbling down the leg side to spark the celebrations.

TV replays showed that the dismissal should not have been given, Kasprowicz taking his lower hand off the bat before ball hit glove.

But England and a packed Edgbaston were already celebrating a famous England victory.

Interview: England captain Michael Vaughan

News conference: England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff

Interview: Australia captain Ricky Ponting


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