The Ingenious Josh Hazlewood Trap That Sealed The Ashes For Australia

He'll forever be remembered for taking the final wicket which secured the Ashes for Australia.

But lanky New South Wales paceman Josh Hazlewood's other wicket in England's second innings of the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford was the game-changer.

The ball itself was magnificent. A late inswinger which was close to unplayable. England batsman Jos Buttler chose to leave it, as well he might have, as it looked to be missing the stumps.

But there's more to this moment than meets the eye.

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The true genius of this ball was what came before it.

It was shortly after the tea break, and England were 6/172. For 21 overs, they had defied Australia, and agonisingly for the tourists, it appeared there may be no way through.

But Hazlewood -- who was wicketless until this point -- had a plan.

See the two guys either side of the bat? Those two fielders in close positions were Hazlewood's way of signalling that he'd be bowling short, trying to elicit a back-foot fend from the batsman that might be caught.

Not the best one to leave, Jos. Image: Getty.

And Hazlewood did indeed bowl the previous four balls short to Buttler (one in this over, three in his previous). Then came beautiful deceit combined with perfect execution.

Hazlewood bowled a fuller ball which looked like the sort of wide-ish delivery Buttler could leave alone. He shouldered arms, watching it -- he thought -- travel harmlessly through to the keeper.

But as mentioned, the ball swung back late and CRASH! Stumps knocked over.

Hazlewood followed up a little later with the match-clinching wicket of the stubborn Craig Overton, to finish with figures of 2/31 in the innings, and an impressive 6/88 for the match.

Haze struck a purple patch of form.. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Australia won the match by 185 runs to take a 2-1 series lead with one match to play, which means they've retained The Ashes urn they won in Australia in the summer of 2017/18.

How Josh Hazlewood was not selected for the first Test in this series is anyone's guess.

The final Test at The Oval starts on Thursday.

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