Charlotte Edwards
Edwards\'s England are closing in on retaining the Ashes.

England's women cricketers showed their male counterparts how to win in Australia by winning the one-off test match by 61 runs to take a giant step towards retaining the Ashes.

After the first of seven matches against Australia, England take a six-point lead in the series and require two wins in the subsequent six one-day and T20 games to win the Ashes down-under.

Australia resumed on the final day in Perth on 57-5 thanks to three quick wickets from England fast bowler Kate Cross on day three still requiring 185 to win.

Sarah Elliot and Ellyse Perry's sixth-wicket partnership had proved threatening but their 44-run reign came to an end as Perry clipped Anya Shrubshole's ball to Jenny Gunn at square leg.

Shrubshole then dismissed Erin Osbourne for a duck as the ball fell to Danielle Wyatt.

Sarah Coyte made just seven before Australia were reduced to 106-8 as Coyte was trapped leg before wicket by Gunn.

Next came the turn of Rene Farrell to try and rescue victory from the jaws of defeat but it wasn't to be as Shrubsole struck once again.

The stubborn Elliot was finally toppled after an inside edge off a Katherine Brunt ball went crashing into the stumps to round off victory before lunch.

"The last four days have been a rollercoaster, but I'm really proud of the girls," said captain Charlotte Edwards.

"They actually came out quite hard at us this morning, which we weren't quite expecting. We leaked too many boundaries and they played well.

"But you always felt you were in with a chance of two quick wickets. With how the game had unfolded up until then, wickets always seemed to fall in clusters, so I didn't panic too much, although it was a bit of a shock.

"But to finish it in the fashion we did, for Anya to take the ball in the way she did and deliver a spell like that - I wasn't expecting it to be over by 12 o'clock."

Edwards added: "this is not the Ashes won - but we have to keep working hard and hopefully will take the Ashes home."

England now have three one-day and three Twenty20 games ahead of them, requiring two wins while Australia must win five from six games to regain the urn.