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Australia s opening batsmen Chris Rogers pulls a ball in front of English wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow on his way to 73 not out on day two of the Fifth Test at the SCG. Picture: AP.
Australia's opening batsmen Chris Rogers pulls a ball in front of English wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow on his way to 73 not out on day two of the Fifth Test at the SCG. Picture: AP.

UPDATE 3.20pm: Chris Rogers became the leading run-scorer in the back-to-back Ashes series as Australia put England to the sword at the SCG.

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In a celebration of Australian triumph, which included former prime minister Bob Hawke skolling his now customary schooner of beer in the outer, Rogers led his team to a position of complete domination in the fifth Test.

His unbeaten 73 helped Australia to 4-140 to lead England by 311 with three days to play to complete the 5-0 Ashes whitewash.

George Bailey has a golden opportunity to play for his Test career after reaching 20 not out.

Australia are sure to bat for at least another full session – and perhaps two – before unleashing their pace attack on a SCG pitch that is starting to reveal the lack of preparation caused by a Big Bash match at the ground last week.

Inconsistent bounce and pace, as well as considerable seam and spin movement, will make batting increasingly perilous.

The Australian top order revealed the looming difficulties as four batsmen, all of whom have scored centuries this series, fell cheaply.

James Anderson had David Warner lbw and forced an edge from Shane Watson while Michael Clarke nicked Stuart Broad and Steve Smith did the same to Ben Stokes.

Rogers was unmoved throughout the carnage at the other end though he experienced a stroke of good fortune by scoring a seven off a Broad delivery.

The ball was chased to the third man boundary but keeper Jonny Bairstow then hurled the return past the non-striker’s end to give away four overthrows.

The bonus helped take Rogers to 786 runs across the two series, five more than England’s Ian Bell.

Earlier in the day, Mitchell Johnson claimed his third wicket to dismiss England for 155 on the stroke of tea, giving Australia a lead of 171.

Given the massive corporate, charity and television investment in day three of the Test, which is known as Jane McGrath Day, it would have been a brave Australian captain to enforce the follow on and risk ending the match on the second day.

Ben Stokes continued his memorable match by top-scoring with a lively 47 after arriving at 5-23 but there was little assistance from his team-mates.

Debutant Gary Ballance and Jonny Bairstow each added 18 while Broad swung lustily for 30 not out.

Johnson’s 3-33 gave him 34 for the series, the best in an Ashes campaign since Shane Warne claimed 40 in 2005, while Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle also picked up three apiece.

Harris set the early tone with his probing swing bowling but Siddle also came into his own in the session with his brisk cutters gaining considerable purchase on the second day pitch.

Batting in the second half of the match is sure to be a trial with the Australian attack sure to relish the conditions.

Yesterday, Steve Smith realised a boyhood dream to score a century at the SCG, keeping Australia on target for a 5-0 Ashes whitewash in the process.

Smith and Brad Haddin came to the rescue when Australia were reeling at 5-97 and instigated a stunning turnaround on day one of the fifth Test.

Australia were bowled out for 326 after losing the toss, with all the momentum finishing with the home side after man-of-the-series Mitchell Johnson removed Michael Carberry in the shadows of stumps to leave England 1-8 in reply.

It was groundhog day for England, who again failed to deliver the killer blow and were made to pay by a ruthless opposition led by Haddin and Johnson.

Veteran wicketkeeper Haddin made 75 and his free-hitting was the highlight of a crucial 128-run sixth wicket stand with Smith.

But it was the 24-year-old Smith, born and bred in Sydney's Sutherland Shire, who went on to post his second ton of the series and first in front of a packed house at the SCG.

Smith smashed 17 fours and a six for his 115, soaking up a standing ovation as he continued England's tour from hell with a fighting innings.

"It's my favourite place to play. I'm absolutely delighted to have got a ton out here in tough circumstances and get the team in a good position," Smith said.

"Brad was great out there ... I took a back seat and watched him go. The way he played his shots was brilliant.

"He's been outstanding ... he comes in and tries to switch the momentum and he's done it numerous times this series."

The silver-lining of England's tour, allrounder Ben Stokes, claimed career-best figures of 6-99, but it was a tough day at the office for debutants Boyd Rankin and Scott Borthwick.

Rankin broke down on two occasions, appearing to struggle with hamstring soreness.

However, England say it was just cramp and expect him to bowl in the second innings.
It was pain of a different kind for legspinner Borthwick who had figures of 1-49 from seven overs.

Haddin in particular feasted on Borthwick, and England's reluctance to use their slow bowler contributed to a slow over rate and fans being robbed of six overs.

But there was no shortage of excitement, with Haddin (13 fours) and Smith heaping all the pressure on England, who have only passed a total of 300 twice this series.

"When you get sent in and make 326 you'll probably take that," said Smith.

"And to have them one out overnight as well, we're in a good position."

Haddin became the first batsman in over 40 years to score a half century in every match of an Ashes series.

The veteran wicket-keeper has now scored four half centuries and a ton from every first innings he's played this series batting at No.7 and is in the form of his career.
Another Australian top order collapse gave cause for concern ahead of next month's tour to South Africa.

Openers David Warner and Chris Rogers went cheaply, and Michael Clarke and Shane Watson followed before lunch - with Stokes, Stuart Broad and James Anderson sharing the spoils.

Selectors gave George Bailey another chance at No.6, ensuring this Australia side goes down in history as the first to field an unchanged XI through a five-match series.

However, the romanticism couldn't inspire Bailey and his spot is now in jeopardy after edging Broad for 1.