• Australia retain urn but cannot close out series win
The defining moment – we always have to have one of those at this time of year – came in mid-afternoon. Up strode the noble Stuart Broad from the Pavilion End, a gallant, gnarled old warrior in this campaign, who has never relented in his pursuit of the Ashes. He banged down another delivery, just short of a length and on the stumps. Steve Smith was on strike, shuffling towards the City of London and he flicked the ball away on the leg side from the middle of his bat.
So what’s new here? The ball travelled fast but in the air towards fine leg. But there was a fielder, stationed at leg slip, Ben Stokes, who has licence to roam in this England side, to go wherever he senses the ball might end up. He dived to his left to make the catch before hurling the ball skywards. There was a moment of disbelief among the crowd and even among the England players at what had just happened. Smith was out for a paltry 23. Stokes was embraced; Root, who has been driven to distraction throughout this series by Smith, punched the air with abandon. Surely victory was around the corner now. And it was by 135 runs despite a defiant century from Matthew Wade.