England yet again had no answer to Brad Haddin as their experiences on day one of the Sydney Test neatly encapsulated a miserable Ashes campaign.
Even Ben Stokes, whose maiden five-wicket haul included three in one over – and finally that of centurion Steve Smith (115) – admitted at stumps that Haddin has England very much on the back foot. Before Haddin (75) and Smith launched a punishing stand of 128, the tourists appeared to have Australia in a spot of bother.
Instead, the hosts recovered to 326 all out, and then England lost opener Michael Carberry in a reply of eight for one as Mitchell Johnson took his series wickets tally to 32. Stokes finished with six for 99 but was as powerless as any of his teammates to stop Haddin.
Haddin passed 50 for the sixth time in the series – from number seven. Australia had lurched to 97 for five when he arrived to change the game again on his home ground.