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Cook's double delight puts him in elite company

Alastair Cook's 11th 150-plus score put him top of the tree among Englishmen ESPNcricinfo Ltd

Cook marches on and on

Alastair Cook has become just the third visiting batsman to score two or more double centuries in Australia. Wally Hammond and Brian Lara are the other two to achieve this rare feat.

Cook also now holds the highest score by a visiting batsmen at the MCG, going past the 208 by Viv Richards in 1984. He now holds the record for the highest scores by a visiting batsman in two of the five major venues in Australia. His 235 not out at Brisbane in 2010-11 is the highest score by a visiting batsmen at the Gabba. Cook's unbeaten 244 is now the fifth highest score for England in an Ashes Test. He still has a chance tomorrow to move further up that elite list.

This was Cook's second double century in 2017 and the highest score by any batsmen in 2017, going past the scores of 243 made by Cook and Virat Kohli. Cook and Kohli are the only players to have scored more than one double century for the year.


Alastair Cook also made his eleventh score of 150 or more - This is the most for any player from England. Cook is also the third cricketer from England, after Jack Hobbs and Wally Hammond, to score three or more scores of 150-plus in Australia. In the course of his innings, Cook also went past Mahela Jayawardene, Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Brian Lara to become the sixth highest run-getter in Tests.

The ninth-wicket stand

Stuart Broad has had a good Test so far. He picked up four wickets in the first innings, and has now scored his second fifty of the year, having not made more than 47 in any of the previous three years. More importantly, he added 100 runs for the ninth wicket alongside Cook. This is the first century stand for England's ninth wicket against Australia since George Geary and George Macaulay added 108 in 1926. Australia have conceded eight century stands for the ninth wicket. The last time they did it was in 2013 when MS Dhoni and Bhuvneshwar Kumar added 140. In that match , Dhoni made an unbeaten 224.

England's familiar foes

Moeen Ali was dismissed by Nathan Lyon for the sixth time in seven innings in this series. In the 2015 Ashes in England, Moeen scored 89 runs from 120 balls and was never dismissed by Lyon, compared to 80 runs from 176 balls this time around. Jonny Bairstow has been dismissed by Mitchell Starc on four occasions this series, but his record against Lyon is not great either. Bairstow now has been dismissed by Lyon on six occasions - the joint-second most times he has been dismissed by any bowler behind Starc. Josh Hazlewood and James Vince also crossed swords for the fourth time this series.

Root fails to convert again

England's captain Joe Root failed to convert a good start to a century once again. This was his third fifty of the series and his eighth of the year. Root now has 35 fifties and 13 centuries, meaning that his conversation rate of 27% is the worst among the 37 cricketers to have scored 2000 Test runs and averaged in excess of 50.