Ashes 2013-14: Five things for England to sort out before the second Test
Sunday 24 November 2013
1. Jonathan Trott
England’s No 3 has been a linchpin of the team since his Test debut in 2009 but he faces his biggest challenge yet. Trott appeared at Brisbane not to be able to handle the short-pitched assault from Mitchell Johnson. If he cannot sort out his problems quickly, the future looks worrying for him.
2. Graeme Swann
Unable to find much turn from the Gabba pitch, the off-spinner also struggled to contain the Australian batsmen. In a four-man attack, if he cannot take wickets Swann must be able to play a containing role, to enable the seamers to take a breather. The Aussies have made their intentions clear.
3. Matt Prior
There is nothing wrong with Prior’s glovework but he has not made a Test half-century since the tour of New Zealand last spring. His runs at No 7 have been crucial to England in the past but at the moment his confidence looks low and his technique flawed. Australia will be encouraged by the struggles of England’s vice-captain.
4. The third seamer
Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad bowled well enough at The Gabba; Chris Tremlett was far less effective, often failing to bowl at much more than 80mph. With neither Steve Finn nor Boyd Rankin looking convincing in the warm-up games, England may regret their decision to leave Graham Onions at home.
Verbal sparring is all very well but England would do better to ignore most of the on-field barbs. If Australia want to make this personal, let them. The tourists should follow the example of their captain, Alastair Cook, who simply turned his back on Johnson when he tried to sledge him.
The Microsoft mogul told fans a few home truths during his Reddit AMA
First full-length look is finally here
Brooklyn Beckham poses in Arsenal training kit following rumours of signing for the Gunners
Manchester United transfer news and rumours: David De Gea could leave for FREE; £38m for Marquinhos; £37m bid for Mats Hummels;
Transfer talk: Juan Cuadrado Chelsea move imminent; Manchester United eye Nathaniel Clyne; Andre Schurrle medical at Wolfsburg
Danny Ings to Liverpool: The Reds attempt to steal a march on rivals in race to sign Burnley striker
Kim Sears 'swearing' outburst threatens to overshadow Andy Murray's Australian Open semi-final win
- 1 Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures