Haddin's provides some Australian success
Record of the day
Brad Haddin entered this match needing four dismissals to pass Rod Marsh's 1982-83 record of 28 in a Test series and he finished the first innings level with Marsh, having picked up three catches. That might have been that, had the match petered out to a dull draw but when Australia set England a target at tea it gave Haddin one session to pass Marsh. His opportunity didn't take long. In the fifth over of England's chase, Joe Root flashed outside off stump and tickled Ryan Harris behind, Haddin gloving the chance cleanly to register a world record 29th dismissal in a Test series. Marsh, the selector-on-duty for this tour, said: "I'm delighted for Brad, I just wish he had have broken it by plenty more which probably would have meant we also won the series."
Reception of the day
There is no disguising the fact that Simon Kerrigan has endured a horrid Test debut. But, rather than hounding him, the crowd at The Oval empathised with his pain and encouraged his every involvement in the game. Coming in at No. 11 in England's first innings, he was afforded the sort of rousing reception usually given to greats of the game playing their last Test on the ground - which is a possibility in Kerrigan's case - and, when he got off the mark with an almost involuntary jab to deflect a ball heading into his ribs into the legside, he was rewarded with the sort of ovation usually reserved for players reaching a century.
Catch of the day No. 1
James Anderson has typified the England approach in this series. Despite looking distinctly jaded at times in the last couple of weeks, he has continued to give his all and here was rewarded for a fine piece of commitment and athleticism with the wicket of David Warner. The batsman, perhaps surprised by a bit of extra bounce, prodded the ball off the splice only to see Anderson, somehow changing direction in his follow-through, diving to his right and holding on to an outstanding, one-handed catch despite jamming his forearm into the pitch as he landed. For a fast bowler with many miles in the legs, it was an outstanding effort.
Snub of the day
Australian indignities this series have been many and varied, but the Tasmanian debutant James Faulkner received a curt lesson in English "courtesy" to Ashes opponents when he went to collect a ball that had run away to the boundary towards the Vauxhall End on the final morning. A local spectator, wearing an egg and bacon MCC tie, had picked up the ball and shaped to offer it to Faulkner, before brusquely dropping it to the ground in front of him. It was an un-gentlemanly act, and the notably feisty Faulkner did well to contain his indignation.
Tune of the day
As the realisation dawned in England's second innings that a win really was a possibility, Billy Cooper, the Barmy Army trumpeter, summed up the mood perfectly when he played the Louis Armstrong riff from the song We Have All The Time In The World, from the James Bond film On Her Majesty's secret service. It was a moment that perfectly encapsulated the feel of the ground as it became apparent that Kevin Pietersen was not in a mood to be denied. Cooper was not allowed to play in the first two Tests of the series (at Lord's and Trent Bridge), but has been an amusing and sometimes calming presence in every game since.
Catch of the day No. 2
Matt Prior finally found some form when the series was deader than Abraham Lincoln. Prior had been in hibernation this series. He hadn't just failed to make a hundred, he had failed to make a 40. So he must have been happy to be smashing the ball around with confidence today, then he skied one that went straight up on the air. Mitchell Starc ran around to catch it as it swirled away from him. Eventually he dived and caught it with his mouth inches away from the sawdust. Prior was left half-centruryless.