Despite rain, Andy Flower hopeful of victory at Edgbaston

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London, Aug. 2 (ANI): Even as rain wiped out the third day of the third Test at Edgbaston, England team director Andy Flower is hopeful that his side will manage a victory that would give them a 2-0 lead over the Australians.

England will resume on Sunday on 116 for two in reply to Australia's 263.

Asked whether England could win, Flower replied: "Absolutely. We've seen how quickly things can happen in the game.

"We'll have to see how well both sides play. If we can get 70 overs in, which would be a godsend, we still have to bat well to get a lead, because we're still 140-odd runs behind. It's up to us to bat well and see how far ahead we can get," The Guardian quoted him, as saying.

Edgbaston groundsman Steve Rouse scoffed at claims by the South African umpire Rudi Koertzen that a full day's play will be possible.

A drawn series will be enough for England to retain the Ashes, but their record at The Oval - only one win since 1972 - suggests they may not want to be needing victory in the fifth and final Test in south London.

"We can't afford too many draws because otherwise the series is lost. We'll have to be at our best to take the last eight English wickets as quick as we can to give us a chance of winning the game," said Australia's Shane Watson.

England have handed Graham Onions an incremental central contract as a reward for the 17 wickets he has taken in his first four Tests.

"He's had a storming start to the season and you can see that confidence coming out now," Flower said.

But the Australians are just as wary of James Anderson, whose five wickets yesterday reawakened old fears about the swinging ball.

"We just need to be a bit more patient and bit more solid in our defence and our decision making to make sure he doesn't go through us again," said Watson. (ANI)

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