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The Ashes: England’s Stuart Broad ‘disappointed’ to miss first Test but will not ‘kick up a stink’

“I was disappointed not to play but I realise this series is a marathon and not a sprint. Never have five Tests been as bunched up as this and it will be exhausting, so realistically I don’t think any seamer will play all five,” says Broad as he urges England to be smart in pink-ball Test

Last Updated: 12/12/21 7:32am

Stuart Broad felt he could have had a positive influence at The Gabba – but will not ‘kick up a stink’ about his omission

England seamer Stuart Broad feels he could have had a “positive influence” during the first Ashes Test – but will not “kick up a stink” about his omission from the game at The Gabba.

Broad and long-time new-ball partner James Anderson were both left out in Brisbane for a game the tourists went on to lose by nine wickets on day four as they remained winless at the Queensland ground since 1986.

England’s batting was the chief reason for their defeat, with Joe Root’s men skittled for 147 on day one after electing to bat and then losing eight wickets in Saturday’s morning session to slip from their overnight 220-2 to 297 all out.

Mike Atherton has defended England's team selection for the first Ashes Test saying it was 'completely understandable' to leave out Broad and James Anderson

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Mike Atherton has defended England’s team selection for the first Ashes Test saying it was ‘completely understandable’ to leave out Broad and James Anderson

Mike Atherton has defended England’s team selection for the first Ashes Test saying it was ‘completely understandable’ to leave out Broad and James Anderson

Broad still believes he could have aided England in the Ashes opener – but said there would be no repeat of his memorable TV interview with Sky Sports in the summer of 2020 when he voiced his frustration at being left out of the first Test against West Indies at The Ageas Bowl.

The 35-year-old – who, along with Anderson, looks poised to return to the England XI for the pink-ball Test in Adelaide from Thursday – wrote in the Mail on Sunday: “I got myself into a mindset where I was ready to go.

“I love Ashes cricket, love bowling at the Gabba and feel like I could’ve had a positive influence on a pitch like that.

“Of course, in my mind I was 100 per cent preparing to play and that’s especially important given my role. As a new-ball bowler, you are faced with bowling one of the most high-pressured deliveries in world sport.

“Over the past 12 months, Jimmy and I tried to ensure we were as fit as could be in the current Covid climate, ready to go and available for all five Tests in Australia. I think we ticked that box – but England selection is not in the hands of players.

“It is in those of people who have to make choices based on conditions and the balance of the team and our job now with four matches to go is to be ready for the next [Test].

Nasser Hussain looks at what changes England might make for the second Ashes Test in Adelaide

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Nasser Hussain looks at what changes England might make for the second Ashes Test in Adelaide

Nasser Hussain looks at what changes England might make for the second Ashes Test in Adelaide

“I was disappointed not to play but I also realise this series is a marathon and not a sprint.

“Never have five Test matches been as bunched up as this and it will be exhausting, so realistically I don’t think any seamer will play all five.

Broad has not played a competitive match since August due to a calf injury with his ability to get bowling under his belt hampered by rain wrecking the majority of England’s pre-Ashes warm-up games.

“It would be wrong in this scenario to kick up a stink,” said the paceman.

“I’ve been left out on numerous occasions and sometimes it comes as a real surprise. This was less of a surprise, maybe because I wasn’t in the team for the previous series against India due to a calf injury.”

Atherton says a combination of 'bad luck and circumstance' led to England being completely underprepared for the opening Ashes Test

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Atherton says a combination of ‘bad luck and circumstance’ led to England being completely underprepared for the opening Ashes Test

Atherton says a combination of ‘bad luck and circumstance’ led to England being completely underprepared for the opening Ashes Test

Looking ahead to the Adelaide Test, Broad added: “There is no time to feel sorry for ourselves, dwell on not batting, bowling, or catching very well. We know that’s the case.

“What we mustn’t do is carry negatives with us for the next month. We’ve done that on Ashes tours past and consistently lost. We must pretend it’s 0-0 in a four-match series and go again.

“Timing is very important in floodlit Test matches. Conditions change very quickly in certain periods, so you have to recognise them and adapt.

Hussain says England's batters must give Joe Root more support after they collapsed again at The Gabba

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Hussain says England’s batters must give Joe Root more support after they collapsed again at The Gabba

Hussain says England’s batters must give Joe Root more support after they collapsed again at The Gabba

“That might mean backloading your seamers to bowl in the twilight period when batting tends to be more challenging, and so the spinners and all-rounders have to do more work up front.

“What length is going to hit the top of the stumps with that ball? We have seen when the Australians have done damage with the pink ball in previous Adelaide matches, it has come from a lightly fuller length.

“There will also be moments when you need to sit in. David Warner got a triple hundred in a pink-ball game at Adelaide so we can’t just think it’s going to nip around. We have to adjust quicker than Australia with whatever is presented to us.”




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