Northampton:Australia wrapped-up a morale-boosting 135-run win over Northamptonshire, but their worries over the form of Ashes spearhead Mitchell Johnson increased.
Johnson, who has struggled in the first two Tests against England, did little to support his case to retain his place for this week's third Test at Edgbaston, with figures of 1-107 in 18.1 overs on Sunday.
But fellow paceman Stuart Clark impressed to boost his chances of a recall while under-pressure opener Phillip Hughes hit a second innings 68 in his team's 270 for three declared.
Shane Watson and Andrew McDonald - who hastened the hosts' collapse after tea with four for 15 - also did their hopes of a call-up no harm whatsoever.
Set 353 to win from 71 overs, Northants hinted briefly at a competitive if always unlikely chase as openers Niall O'Brien (58) and Ben Howgego put on 99 as Johnson struggled.
Denied the new ball, as he was in the first innings, the left-armer thought he had a wicket in his first over.
But as O'Brien began to walk off after clipping a ball low to square-leg, he was reprieved when Simon Katich indicated it had not carried.
Instead it eventually needed Watson to make the breakthrough, O'Brien skying an attempted pick-up shot into the off-side ring.
Australia coach Tim Nielsen lent his support to Johnson. "Mitchell has been at the forefront for the past two years when we have played some pretty good cricket," he said.
"There have been a lot of times when batsmen and bowlers have been out of form and we have stuck with them and shown some faith, unlike what seems to have been the public or the press' point of view.
"At the moment, we're working hard for him to get his bowling as good as we can - and we feel he is getting closer every time."