England end Day 1 at 226/6 in 4th Ashes Test

Melbourne, Dec 26: England were 226/6 at stumps on Day 1 of the fourth Ashes Test against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) here Thursday.

A new world record was set for the crowd attendance on a single day of Test cricket with 91,092 fans on hand — surpassing the previous mark of 90,800 also set at the MCG in 1961 on Day 1 of the Test against the West Indies — as Aussie skipper Michael Clarke won a fourth consecutive toss but this time sent England in to bat under overcast skies and in warm humid conditions.

The skies cleared as the day progressed and the game was an arm wrestle with England putting on some steady partnerships. Australia found breakthroughs and made some good headway late in the day as wickets fell with the total at 48, 96, 106, 173, 202 and 216 runs. Ryan Harris and Mitchell Johnson snared two wickets each with one each also to Peter Siddle and Shane Watson.

At stumps, England’s top scorer Kevin Pietersen was unbeaten at 67 and Tim Bresnan was batting on 1.

The hosts currently lead five-match series 3-0.