However, after Joe Root struck out before lunch and then Captain Ben Stokes early in the afternoon, the writing seemed to be on the wall, but Brook’s brave play allowed England to come within striking distance.
Wood’s 16 points on eight goals and Chris Woakes’ confident play brought the hosts home, sparking dramatic scenes of celebration in Leeds after a match in which the pendulum swung hour after hour.
Every test in this series has been exciting, and day four at Headley was no exception. England is still trying to win the Ashes: since 1936-37, no team has come back to win the series after a 2-0 defeat.
The fact that they came back to win is mission accomplished for now.
On day four, fans traveled to Headingley hoping for more of Captain Stokes’ exploits on the field, where his incredible 135 nonouts brought England a dramatic victory over their old foes in 2019.
Starting the day 27-0 on the night, Ben Duckett went down early before he looked in good form, and a returning Moin Ali quickly followed him into the pavilion.
But even at this point, with Stokes on the field, who pitched 80 in the first inning and another century in the last test at Lord’s, they still seemed in a strong position.
Ruth, ranked fifth in the world in batting average in tests, struck out badly just before lunch, which once again turned the tide of the game.
Stokes’ dismissal early in the second half gave Australia even more momentum, and Johnny Bairstow was next, putting the tourists on the verge of winning the series.
Brooke resisted England, reaching his half-century with 57 goals, his ninth score of fifty or more points for England in just 10 Tests.
Brook’s rapid pace of goal scoring has been Brook’s trademark since his appearance in the England team. He surpassed the 1,000 Test runs in 1,058 balls during his innings – faster than any other batter in Test history.
He failed to lead his team to the end, catching the ball in Cummins’ hands, but Woakes kept his composure, making a decisive 32 points, and Wood with a big six-pointer brought England closer to the final total.
It was Woakes who made the winning run, ensuring that the fourth test in Manchester in two weeks’ time could still be played to win one of the most dramatic Ashes series in human memory.