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What Went Wrong for England?

What Went Wrong for England?
Image Source: England Cricket (@englandcricket)

And nobody expected the biggest rivalry of Test cricket to have a one-sided result. But The Ashes saw consecutive surrenders from England, terrible collapses of their batting order that resulted in Australian retaining The Ashes in less than 12 days cricket. England lost all three Tests so far and would be now looking forward to regaining some glory in the remaining two matches.

After the match England captain Joe Root said, “We knew going into today we were more than capable of getting ourselves a score and it’s really disappointing that we didn’t manage to do that.” He admitted that Australia outplayed them and spoke about the hostile spell from Scott Boland that triggered the collapse. What the skipper did not mention was the lack of support he had from the teammates. England’s too much dependence on their captain Joe Root while batting is one of the major reasons of collapse. In three Tests so far in this year’s Ashes, England put up a competitive score when Root could get a big score expect of a 44 from Chris Woakes in the second innings of second match. This has been a case for England over last few years.

Root is the highest scorer in Test this year with 1708 runs to his name while the second-best scorer from England Test team is Rory Burns with 530 runs. That’s not all. Numbers suggest that extras have more runs for England than rest of their batters. The opening pair failed, the middle-order with names like Ben Stokes, Dawid Malan, Ollie Pope is struggling. Stokes was expected to make a memorable return, but this turned out to be a forgettable series for him. England’s hope was bestowed in Pope who scored just 43 runs in first two tests.

Root praised his bowlers for their last performance, “I also think that the way we bowled yesterday was excellent as well. I’m really disappointed for the bowlers because they kept us in the game, we just have to keep looking to get better.” England bowling has been much better than the batting but in this unit, they also depend mostly on Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad. England chose to go without these two in the first Test but had to bring them back. Having one of these two bowlers gives England bowling the much-needed boost but others coming up with key spells without the duo is the need of the hour for England. Broad is 35-year-old while Anderson turned 39 this year. It’s high time England start looking for more match-winning bowlers.

On the other hand, when it comes to batting the lack of experience is another visible factor. Most of the batters are in their twenties and tackling world class bowling attacks does need experience along with talent. Another issue England may like to address is the lack of players coming to play the Test cricket. The focus on County has now shifted to The Hundred. With the success of One Day International and T20I cricket, the young generation seems to be focused on the limited-overs mainly. Before players like Root, Broad, Anderson bid adieu to the game, England must strengthen the reserve.

“We Have to Have a Really Strong Inner Belief to Be Able to Come Back”, Joe Root

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Written by Shreyasi Talukdar

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