Australia have retained the Ashes on foreign soil for the first time in 18 years after overcoming a stoic performance by England's middle order and tail to claim a thrilling victory in the fourth Test.
Tim Paine's men were made to wait until the final session of the game to secure the urn after the bottom half of England's order raised local hopes the Ashes could be saved by a miracle in Manchester, two weeks after Ben Stokes's heroics at Headingley.
It was 6.15pm local time and the floodlights on when the video umpire confirmed Craig Overton was out lbw to Josh Hazlewood, handing Australia a 185-run win and the urn for another two years. There were 81 balls to spare.
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"There were a few nervous moments there coming off Headingley but I thought we learnt from that, held our nerve and bowled really well against a team that fought really hard like we knew they would," Paine said.
"That was a loss that would break a lot of teams but I was really confident that we weren't one of those teams. I could feel it, I thought we handled that week superbly, turned up here and did our jobs as good cricket teams and sports teams do."
In keeping with the roller-coaster nature of this series, nothing could be taken for granted on a dramatic final day as England's batsmen suppressed their attacking instincts in a bid to hang on for a famous draw.
Tensions rose in a nerve-jangling final session as freshly promoted No.10 Jack Leach, who made the most famous one not out in Test history, frustrated Australia with his obdurate defence.
Offered free glasses for life by eyewear brand Specsavers, Leach stopped play to wipe his spectacles after being struck on the grille by Cummins, who responded with another bumper followed by some terse words.
England ultimately failed but not before getting to the point where the partisan Old Trafford crowd marked every defensive shot and leave by the English tail with vigorous applause.
With two wickets left to get and the light fading, concussion supersub Marnus Labuschagne was the unlikely producer of the breakthrough, ripping one out of the rough to have England's cult hero caught in close.
Leach had survived 14 overs, looking every bit like a player who had made a Test 92 just weeks earlier.
Few outside the England camp gave them much chance of saving the match, but they refused to be beaten without a tremendous fight.
The hosts survived the first hour without loss, but Cummins landed two blows before break, including the prized wicket of Ben Stokes, caught behind to a thin edge.
The England all-rounder walked while Marais Erasmus was still considering Australia's appeal though such was the confidence shown by Paine and the slip cordon it's likely a review would have been called, which would have overruled any on-field call of not out.
When Nathan Lyon had Joe Denly caught in close for 53, Australia had 66 overs to run through the bottom half of England's line-up.
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The ball, however, had softened, Lyon was nursing a grumbly spinning finger, and Jos Buttler and Jonny Bairstow were suppressing their urges to attack.
Paine shuffled his bowlers with five changes in the next eight overs to the drinks break, including the introduction of part-timers Labuschagne and Travis Head in the hope of burgling a wicket.
The breakthrough came first ball after drinks when Starc, from around the wicket, found enough deviation off the track to trap Bairstow in front. A review, of umpire's call, ruled in favour of the bowler.
Technology, however, was against the Australians when Overton overturned Marais Erasmus's lbw verdict to a Cummins delivery which was zeroing onto the stumps.
Ball tracker found Overton had been struck outside the line of off stump, which avoided a potential controversy over whether he had hit the ball onto his pad.
The tea break revitalised Australia's bowlers, who struck twice in consecutive overs shortly after the resumption.
It took a ripper from Hazlewood to breach the defences of Buttler, who shouldered arms to a ball which hooped from outside off and paid the price.
Buttler had been stoutly defending such deliveries for over two hours but Paine's move to place extra fielders in close had the batsman on the back foot anticipating a short ball instead.
Archer fell moments later after Lyon found a gremlin in the pitch to shoot one low into his pad.