England coach Silverwood would ‘pick same two teams’ despite going 2-0 down in Ashes

England Chris Silverwood
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Last Updated on 21 Dec 2021 1:01 pm (UK Time)

England coach Chris Silverwood has admitted that he would pick the same two teams, despite the tourists suffering heavy defeats in the first two Ashes Tests.

Bowling selections were questioned ahead of the first Test, where frontline seamers James Anderson and Stuart Broad were left out, with England suffering a defeat by nine wickets in Brisbane.

Australia inflicted another crushing 275-run defeat in the second Test at Adelaide.

“There is always going to be divided opinion,” said Silverwood.

“You pick a team and not everybody’s going to agree with you.”

When asked by BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew if he would pick the same starting sides for the two Tests again, Silverwood said: “To be honest, I would.”

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Anderson was rested ahead of the first Test as a “precaution”, whilst Broad later admitted that he was “ready to go” at the Gabba, with Australia captain Pat Cummins “surprised” at the omissions.

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Spin bowler Jack Leach was targeted by the Australian batsmen in the first Test, taking 1-102 in his 13 overs. This led to Leach dropping out of the second Test alongside pace bowler Mark Wood, with Anderson and Broad recalled for the day-night Test.

The selection was then called into criticism again, as, without a frontline spinner, England relied on Joe Root’s off-spin and some part-time leg-spin from Dawid Malan, whilst pace bowler Ollie Robinson switched to off-spin whilst Root was receiving a scan. 10 of the 38 wickets to fall in the match came from spin, with Australia’s Nathan Lyon picking up five wickets in the match.

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In the 139-year history of the Ashes, England have never overturned a 2-0 deficit. Their recent record in Australia is for grim reading, suffering a 4-0 defeat in 2017/18, and vice-captain Steve Smith admitted he would “love” to secure a 5-0 whitewash, which the Baggy Greens achieved in 2013/14.

England Chris Silverwood

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