England fight back in rain-hit Ashes Test thanks to Heather Knight heroics

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A career-best 168 not out from Heather Knight and two quick wickets from Katherine Brunt brought England back into the women’s Ashes Test against Australia on a rain-affected third day in Canberra.

After a captain’s knock from Knight guided England to 297 all out – a first-innings deficit of 40 – Brunt did some early damage to go to 50 Test wickets and leave the home side 12 for two when the skies opened in the afternoon.

England will need more of the same as Australia, with a lead of 52 on a wearing pitch – will still fancy their chances of adding the four points for a win from this one-off Test to their 4-2 series lead.

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The tourists needed something special and Knight, resuming the day on 127 not out, in partnership with Sophie Ecclestone (34) and Kate Cross (11), added another 60 runs to their overnight total.

They eked to within 40 runs of Australia’s first-innings total, but needed early in-roads with the ball.

And Brunt obliged, dismissing opener Alyssa Healy for a second-ball duck and also removing Beth Mooney to set up a thrilling final day.