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Chris Woakes takes six wickets for England in final Ashes warm-up

• Day one: Cricket Australia XI 249-9 v England
• Tourists have anxious wait after Jonny Bairstow finger injury

“Who needs Stokes when you’ve got Woakes?” came the cry from the grandstand at Townsville’s charming Tony Ireland Stadium, on the day when England even got an unexpected first look at their third rhyming all-rounder, Ben Foakes. It was far from the day’s most inane Ben Stokes-based sledge England were sent and had at least a morsel of truth – even if both really would be handy – because Chris Woakes bowled beautifully in taking six for 58 as the callow Cricket Australia XI reached stumps on 249 for nine.

Woakes bowls as quickly as anyone England have here and looked even tastier than he did in Adelaide. At a toss conducted by the mayor, which was followed by a bit of didgeridoo action, England were asked to bowl and Woakes was pleased with their efforts on another painfully placid surface. “We had to be patient,” he said. “We felt like we had to sit in for a while and force them to make a mistake. It’s flat, and slow in pace. A Test wicket will be quicker than that.”

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