Ashes: Strauss calls for calm reflection after Leeds drubbing

Monday, August 10, 2009

LEEDS - Following Australia’s crushing innings and 80-run victory over England in the fourth Ashes Test, which saw the two sides level at 1-1, England cricket captain Andrew Strauss called for calm reflection and said there was no need for taking desperate measures.

The failure of England top-order batsmen Ravi Bopara, Ian Bell and Paul Collingwood, who managed just 16 runs between them at Headingley, has led to calls for including the likes of ex-Test batsmen Marcus Trescothick and Mark Ramprakash, the leading England-qualified run-scorers in county cricket this season, to be brought in for the Oval Test that commences on August 20.

“All I would say is it’s time for calm reflection and selection should be based in a calm reflective manner. Whatever decision we come to, hopefully we’ve thought through it carefully and we picked the right 11 to win the Test,” Strauss told reporters after the match.

He also said that he was ready to contest former Australia batsman Justin Langer’s statement that “England will taper off very quickly if you wear them down.”

“If you look at the cricket we’ve played over the last nine months or so, I would contest that,” said Strauss.

“There’s a lot of strength of character in the side and we’re going to need it next week,” he added.

England, looking to regain the Ashes, is now faced with several selection-related problems.

Kevin Pietersen is out with an Achilles heel injury, while all-rounder Andrew Flintoff has a damaged knee that prevented him from playing in the Leeds Test. The bating slump in both innings of the fourth Test has come as an additional worry, but is nothing new.

“If you look at our batting performances over the past nine Tests or so they’ve been pretty good. You don’t want to be in a situation where you ever get bowled out for 51 or 100, to be honest. That is an issue. From my point of view I don’t think we reacted quickly enough to the conditions or situation or the way the Australians bowled,” Strauss said.

Turning to England’s batting, Strauss said it was obviously below par, and the team knew it. (ANI)

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