Australia vs England, Ashes 4th Test Preview: England Look

A dismayed England vowed to take some pride in the resumption of their embarrassing and Covid-hit Ashes tour in the fourth Test in Sydney on Wednesday. Joe Root’s men faced another uphill struggle against a massive Australia, crushing them by an innings and 14 runs within three days in the third Test in Melbourne to hold the Ashes to an unassailable 3-0 lead. kept. This was followed by heavy defeats in Brisbane and Adelaide, where the batting collapsed, poor fielding and questionable selection cost the tourists.

They are facing a 5–0 whitewash, although a rain forecast for Sydney could come to England’s rescue. Veteran seamer Jimmy Anderson admitted that “if I’m being brutally honest the boys are pretty flat out at the moment”.

“It can be difficult, especially for those who are experiencing the Ashes for the first time,” he told English media.

“That’s where the more senior players come in. We have to score goals, make sure everyone is in a good place and have a good headspace to compete.

“We’re not in the race yet. We have two games to do something about it now,” he said.

Both sides have been affected by the rising coronavirus in Sydney, with the state of New South Wales reporting more than 20,000 cases daily. Australia number five Travis Head will be missing after testing positive in Melbourne.

Under pressure England coach Chris Silverwood – whose job is on the line – is also out of Sydney struggling after he reportedly also tested positive, the seventh among the touring party to do so. These include three support staff – fast bowling coach John Lewis, spin coach Jeetan Patel and strength and conditioning boss Darren Waynes. Batting coach Graham Thorpe is expected to take over in the interim, and is facing a selection headache.

– ‘wake up call’ –

The England openers – Rory Burns, Zak Crawley and Haseeb Hameed – have all flopped this series, failing to give David Malan and Root a platform to work on. Their highest ever team total is 297 and no individual centuries, with Malan and Root being the only players to score half-centuries.

Thorpe admitted the batsmen had been given a “wake-up call”, which was reflected in his 68 in the second innings at Melbourne.

“We are still trying to educate some of the youngsters in the rhythm of Test match batting: playing the conditions in the game and doing that for longer periods of time,” he told reporters.

“Some of them haven’t been able to do that yet.”

With Head missing, Australia added Mitchell Marsh and Josh Inglis as cover, but veteran Usman Khawaja will be on course for his first Test since the 2019 Ashes.

“Hopefully I can go out there and score a century and do well for the team in the absence of ‘Heady’,” Khawaja said. “The best cricket conditioning I’ve ever been in.”

There was talk that the home team might debut leg-spinner Mitchell Swepson at a position that has traditionally been the most spin-friendly for Australian Test venues.

But with rain forecast for the first four days now looking less likely, the strong grass cover is expected to make the pitch more fast-bowler friendly.

If the side recovers from the strain, Josh Hazlewood will return to strengthen Australia’s already strong bowling stock.

If he’s not fully prepared, Scott Boland could retain his place after a remarkable 6-7 performance on his Boxing Day Test debut, or Jhye Richardson – who took a five-wicket haul in Adelaide – returns from rest. do. Melbourne.

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Chief selector George Bailey said: “I have a very good belief that if Hoff (Hazelwood) is confident and he says he has the right to go, I think we support him, he has earned that trust. ”

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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