Sport Graeme Swann announces his decision to retire from international and first-class cricket

The spin bowler quit midway through the disastrous tour of Australia

Video: Wildfire tears across Perth

A wildfire has destroyed around 60 homes in the outskirts of the Western Australian capital of Perth.

Robbie Fowler joins Fernando Torres debate

Former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler has criticised Fernando Torres following his record-breaking move to Chelsea.

Australia: Charges over boat people disaster

Three Indonesian men were charged with people smuggling yesterday after their rickety boat smashed into cliffs along the remote Christmas Island in December, killing an estimated 48 people aboard.

Will Hawkes: Fair-weather fans can't bear to watch

Ashes diary

England spoil the hosts' party as unwanted records tumble

Australia 98 England 157-0: Anderson swings the momentum tourists' way as Australia's batsmen fold again

Australians lament 'our worst cricketing day in 100 years'

The Australian media pulled no punches yesterday, with one newspaper describing the capitulation on the first day of the fourth Test against England as "its worst cricketing day for 100 years".

Ponting confident of playing in 4th test

Ricky Ponting's broken finger is healing well and he should be able to play in the fourth Ashes test against England in Melbourne, the Australian captain told reporters on Saturday.

Patience key for Strauss

England must tame the MCG hordes tomorrow, and then prepare for a patience test in pursuit of the Ashes.

James Lawton: In a composite Ashes team only two Australians would make the cut...

One of the glories of being in Australia is the knowledge that nowhere on earth is less susceptible to the more patronising tones of a certain kind of Englishman.

Cook: 'We're not worried by Johnson. Hussey was the difference in Perth'

The superb batting of Mike Hussey rather than the left-arm swing-bowling of a reinvigorated Mitchell Johnson was the major difference between England and Australia in last week's third Test match, and getting Hussey out will be England's priority in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, according to Alastair Cook.

Bob Willis: Swann still the trump card as Ashes rivals prepare to play most important hand of all

True, he had a tough time in Perth and was effectively hit out of the attack. But Melbourne will not be like that and I fully expect him to come back with a bang

'I promise, I can't wait for Boxing Day. It is giving me goosebumps,' says KP

Kevin Pietersen is excited about the MCG, where England can exploit Australia's 'vulnerabilities'

Cook intent on reprising role as tourists' marathon man

Prolific run-scorer says England batsmen must be more cautious early in innings

Finn has been expensive but does not deserve the chop

Middlesex bowler may miss the fourth Test but, argues his coach Angus Fraser, it is Paul Collingwood who should be dropped

Cook keen to move on to next test

England are out to prove their mettle at the MCG, by adapting successfully to whatever conditions meet them there.

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform