On a day when England’s batting was flattened again by the Australian bowlers in the Boxing Day Test at MCG, former captain Michael Vaughan was scathing in his attack of Joe Root’s side, saying, “the only thing they’ve done right is turn up on time”.
England were bundled out for 185 on Day 1 of the third Ashes Test with Australian captain Pat Cummins and spinner Nathan Lyon accounting for three wickets each and Mitchell Starc grabbing two as a spineless display by England on Sunday pushed them on the brink of a series loss.
England lost the opening Test at The Gabba by nine wickets, which was followed by a crushing 275-run defeat at the Adelaide Oval. A loss in the Boxing Day Test will end their hopes of reclaiming the Ashes.
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“They’ve got pretty much everything wrong — selection, tactics have not quite been right,” Vaughan was quoted as saying by dailymail.co.uk after end of day’s play on Sunday.
The 47-year-old, who scored more than 600 runs in the 2002 Ashes series in Australia, including three centuries, was at pains to understand pace bowling stalwart Stuart Broad’s exclusion from the do-or-die game.
“Stuart Broad should be playing here (in Melbourne), he should’ve played in Brisbane. How Stuart Broad is not going to be bowling around the wicket to David Warner on a green top, I just can’t fathom that with the quality that he brings,” said Vaughan.
Before the start of the Test, Vaughan had criticised England for being too friendly with their rivals.
“I think Joe (Root) will be saying to this side: ‘The England supporters and we as a group, we expect a lot more from ourselves. Let’s get a bit nasty.’ There’s been too many mornings where I’ve turned on the television screen and I saw them all shaking hands and having conversation with Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon,” said the former captain.
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He said that all these niceties should be reserved for end of day’s play, and not when they are competing with their arch-rivals on the field.
“Do that in the dressing rooms afterwards, not before the start of play. They’ve been too nice, let’s see if a nastier England side can produce some better results.”
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