JACK Leach stood firm once again for England, as Ben Stokes' century inspired the hosts to 362-9 at Headingley – a victory which keeps their Ashes hopes alive.

Somerset spinner Leach came in to bat with England 286-9, knowing that an Australia win would end the home side's hopes of regaining the urn.

But while Leach ground his way to a score of one not out (from 17 balls), Stokes went into overdrive and blitzed his way to an unbeaten 135.

Leach's one run tied the match, and Stokes struck the winning runs to tie the series at 1-1.

It's fair to say that Leach's Somerset team-mates enjoyed the drama...

The fourth Ashes Test will take place at Old Trafford, from September 4.


IT was a good day for Western Storm, too, as they kept their unbeaten run going with a 77-run victory away to Surrey Stars.

The Storm, who have already secured a place in the Kia Super League final at Hove next month, lost Smriti Mandhana (2) early on, but Rachel Priest blasted 89 from 55 balls (with 10 fours and six sixes).

Heather Knight added 51 and Fran Wilson 14 as the visitors reached 171-4 from their 20 overs.

After a couple of early wickets, Sarah Taylor (34) and Natalie Sciver (25) took the Surrey reply to 62-2.

But Taylor fell to Anya Shrubsole and that sparked a collapse - Sonia Odedra taking 4-25 as the hosts subsided to 94 all out.

The Storm host Yorkshire Diamonds at the Cooper Associates County Ground, Taunton, this coming Wednesday (6.30pm start).