Australia enter the final day of the second Ashes Test battling to stave off defeat, the hosts still with six wickets in hand but needing a further 137 runs to make England bat for a second time.

Late in the day, Mike Hussey and Michael Clarke were set after adding 104 runs, but Clarke fell to the last delivery of the day, caught off the part-time bowling of Kevin Pietersen.

Ashes wicket slammed by Pieterson
Australia on the rack in Ashes

Australia will now be hoping Mike Hussey can mount yet another rescue mission, but will also be relying on the out-of-form Marcus North to make his first significant contribution of the series.

Hussey’s own career hung in the balance two weeks ago and he will offer North some advice – enjoy the challenge.

“Just to try and relax, just try and watch the ball and just let your instincts take over,” Hussey said of his advice to his Western Australian teammate.

North has not reached double figures in nine of his past 18 Test innings – nor in 15 of his 34 Test knocks.

But Hussey backed his 31-year-old mate to produce the goods.

“He’s a class player and I have no doubt he’ll definitely score runs,” Hussey said.

“He’s a champion player, a champion guy to have around the team and we want him to be part of the team, so we’re behind him all the way.

“It’s just about him going out there and enjoying it, trusting his game, and I’m sure he’ll be fine.”