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Last Updated: Saturday, 2 December 2006, 08:03 GMT
Record stand puts England on top
SECOND TEST, ADELAIDE, DAY TWO (Stumps):
England 551-6 dec v Australia 28-1

By Martin Gough

Pietersen and Collingwood
Both Pietersen and Collingwood celebrated centuries in the morning
Paul Collingwood became just the third England batsman to score a double century in Australia as the tourists took charge of the second Ashes Test.

He and Kevin Pietersen shared 310 for the fourth wicket, an England record against Australia, before Collingwood fell for 206 on day two in Adelaide.

Pietersen was run out for 158 but Andrew Flintoff (38) helped England reach 551-6 before declaring.

Flintoff then had Justin Langer caught at slip and Australia closed on 28-1.

Langer was surprised by a short one and could only fend to Kevin Pietersen, giving England's bowlers an ideal start.

Although Matthew Hoggard was less successful sharing the new ball, England decided not to give Steve Harmison the final over.

Collingwood's marathon innings brought the first double century by an England batsman in Australia since Walter Hammond hit 231 not out in Sydney 70 years ago.

ENGLAND'S BEST ASHES SCORES
L Hutton 364 The Oval 1938
RE Foster 287 Sydney 1903/04
KF Barrington 256 Manchester 1964
WR Hammond 251 Sydney 1928/29
WR Hammond 240 Lord's 1938
WR Hammond 231no Sydney 1936/37
E Paynter 216no N'ham 1938
DI Gower 215 B'ham 1985
N Hussain 207 B'ham 1997
P Collingwood 206 Adelaide 2006/07

He took two balls to move from an overnight 98 to his first Ashes Test century but maintained both his concentration and the attritional, shoving, turning style that has served him well.

The only low note in the first two sessions was his tired nudge at Stuart Clark that saw him caught behind off the final ball before tea, after more than eight hours at the crease.

The partnership between Collingwood and Pietersen eclipsed the 288 shared by Graham Thorpe and Nasser Hussain at Edgbaston in 1997 as the highest for the fourth wicket by England in Ashes contests.

England began a chilly, overcast day on 266-3, knowing they needed to double that score to be able to dictate terms for the rest of the game.

On a pitch even less responsive than the first day, though, they were unwilling to attack and although they achieved their aim it took longer than expected.

There were some flashes of inspiration from Clark and Brett Lee, who found reverse swing, but both McGrath and Warne were below par.

Shane Warne
Warne bowled 26 overs on day two, with just one wicket

McGrath was clearly struggling with his heel problem as, for the first time in his career, he conceded more than 100 runs in an innings without taking a wicket.

Warne, rumoured to have a back problem and clearly restricted in movement early in the day, resorted to bowling around the wicket to Pietersen.

The late scalp of Geraint Jones - groping at a leg break - prevented the ignominy suffered by his veteran colleague McGrath as his 26 overs on day two took his aggregate for the innings to 53.

Lee was aggrieved not to have Pietersen caught behind before had moved on from his overnight 60, although replays showed umpire Steve Bucknor correct in ruling no edge.

606: DEBATE
RT
Pietersen greeted McGrath's late arrival in the attack with three boundaries from his first over, and his century came from 149 deliveries.

But the batsman then went 67 balls before his next boundary, unwilling to take on the teasing deliveries from his Hampshire team-mate Warne.

Collingwood took boundaries off Lee to pass his previous Test best of 186 and his previous first-class mark of 190. He then lofted spinner Michael Clarke straight to reach 200 from 383 balls.

SEE ALSO
Collingwood leads England revival
01 Dec 06 |  The Ashes
Aussie coach backs Warne strategy
02 Dec 06 |  The Ashes


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