The Ashes 2013-14: Australia A v England XI, third day, match report - another washout brings frustration - and concern

England XI first Innings 318 for 0 (93 overs)

Hobart

England are being left seriously short of match practice before the Ashes series. The third day of their tour match against Australia A was washed out like the second leaving the tourists at 318-0 and meaning that nine of the team have not yet taken the field.

Three of their senior players - Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann and Kevin Pietersen - have yet to bat, bowl or field on tour and with a maximum of five days' cricket left before the First Test on November 21 there is a grave danger of being undercooked.

Graham Gooch, the side's batting coach, said: "It's always frustrating for cricketers, you want to get out there and play, you want to show what you can do, get your game in good order but although the cricketers are sanguine about it, it is frustrating.

"Cricket is a game of rhythm whether you bat or you bowl. You do get that sort of malaise if you're sitting in a dressing room. It's difficult, your enthusiasm goes a little bit. They do need to be out there because time is short now."

The difficulties are obvious and England must now try to make something of the final day of the match, assuming the rain stops, by batting on for perhaps a session and then giving the bowlers an outing.

But it also means they must alight on their Test team quicker and less thoroughly than they would have liked. Only the match against an NSW Invitation XI next week remains and almost all those with a chance of playing in Brisbane will need more work in the middle.

In the presence of the rain, the day was dominated by England's dietary requirements. Australia's media can barely contain themselves after being handed the glossy brochures produced by England listing their food requirements during Test matches and also the recipes.

The menu includes such delicacies as quinoa, feta and cranberry salad and lamb and pea koftas with mint yoghurt.

Australians seem vastly amused by England's attention to detail and their former fast bowler Merv Hughes, not a man automatically linked with the finer, more delicate things in life, said when asked what he would do if fed piri piri bread tofu with tomato salsa: "I'd dry reach for the next three days."

Hughes, like many of his compatriots could barely credit the litany of England requests at all Test grounds, which are contained in the booklets of 13 and 37 pages. "Give me a ham and pickle sandwich," he said.

"It just shows how far the game has come. It's all about looking after the players. If you have a look at the staff now, Errol Alcott was our physio, dietician and fitness adviser, but these days there's a dietician, a fitness adviser and a physio who all have to justify their positions, so everyone's got to make a splash. They could just back off and let the guys make some runs and take some wickets." England merely wish they could take to the field.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
filmIdris Elba responds to James Bond rumours on Twitter
Arts and Entertainment
Ellie Levenson’s The Election book demystifies politics for children
booksNew children's book primes the next generation for politics
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
film
News
i100
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015