Buchanan to exploit 'psychological damage'

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Giles, in particular, was badly affected by the reaction to England's first Test defeat at Lord's and his subsequent comments have done little to rebuild team morale. An admission from Buchanan last week that Giles would be targeted at Edgbaston cannot have helped his state of mind.

Buchanan would not be drawn into singling out Giles again yesterday. The coach insisted there had been nothing personal in his remarks last week but he made it clear that Australia would be looking for signs of "psychological damage" left by the Lord's result and the subsequent fall-out.

"Without really wanting to intrude into or dissect the England camp, I am happy with the position we are in and we would like to build on that," he said. "We are in front psychologically at the moment and I think we are in front of certain individuals as well. If there is any psychological damage, or technical, physical or tactical damage to the England camp we will explore that over the next five days.

"I don't know Ashley Giles and I cannot really comment about him. Any comments I made were about strategy and not necessarily aimed at him personally. He is just one part of England's strategy and we try to deal with it in a way that gives us an opportunity to deliver what we want to do or expose weaknesses within the England framework."

Giles rounded on England's critics after the Lord's Test, accusing the media of being unfair. He made more bitter comments in a national newspaper this week and there were signs yesterday that the ground was being prepared to take him out of the firing line.

Following the addition of Paul Collingwood to the 12-man squad originally named, David Graveney, the chairman of selectors, said yesterday that Giles would respond positively if it was decided to leave him out.

"Ashley Giles is a top team guy," he said. "That is one of our greatest strengths, the spirit within the team. He will buy into any decision for the interests of the team, whether it's him or any other player who may be left out."

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