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Last Updated: Saturday, 16 February 2008, 09:45 GMT
England women maintain pressure
Women's Test, Bowral, day two (close):
Australia 154 v England 222-7

Charlotte Edwards
Charlotte Edwards fell six runs short of her century

A record stand from captain Charlotte Edwards and Claire Taylor kept England in a healthy position over Australia on day two of the Ashes Test in Bowral.

Edwards (94) and Taylor (79) put on 159 for the third wicket, as England reached stumps on 222-7.

The visitors lead by 68 runs but should have taken the game away from their hosts after reaching tea on 173-2.

England, who resumed on 22-0, collapsed from 216-4 in the final session to give Australia some hope.

England's day got off to a disappointing start when they lost openers Caroline Atkins (15) and Beth Morgan (10) in successive overs to slip to 26-2.

But Taylor and Edwards more than steadied the ship despite seamer-friendly conditions before the latter fell agonisingly short of her century.

Their partnership surpassed England's previous record for the third wicket against Australia, the 137 put on by Rachael Heyhoe-Flint and Edna Barker in 1968-69.

Taylor's dismissal sparked a mini-collapse, which saw the quick departures of Sarah Taylor, Nicky Shaw and Lydia Greenway.

Rosalie Birch (one not out) and Laura Marsh (two not out) were unbeaten at the close.

  • Claire Taylor:
    "My feelings are mixed. I'm happy to have batted for so long with Lottie but disappointed that I didn't see the day through and help the team into a stronger position."

  • England's acting head coach Mark Lane:
    "The team has played with a lot of discipline, which is apparent with the stand of 159 between Claire and Charlotte.

    "The batters have played with the same consistency and intensity we displayed in our bowling performance on Friday, which are both areas we have been working on.

    "The foundations have been laid for us to build a decent first innings lead and put us in a strong position for this Test match."

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