Criket News: For the second Ashes Test in Adelaide, Michael Atherton slammed the tourists’ team selection. On the first day of the pink ball Test, Atherton claimed that England’s team combination was flawed. England’s bowling unit was overhauled. They’re also benching frontline spinner, Jack Leach. At the Gabba, he played the first Test. Instead, they went for a full-throttle onslaught. The strategy, however, failed, and Australia finished the day with a dominant 221-2 lead.
In his New York Times column, Michael Atherton said that England misread the pitch. Atherton said that the tourists got their bowling combination wrong for the second time in the series.
“Right now, England isn’t doing much that makes cricket sense, and this selection seemed counter-intuitive. England had chosen a varied and balanced offensive on a green field under gloomy skies in Brisbane. Also, under piercing blue skies and on a dry, biscuit-colored pitch, that variation and balance were lacking,” Michael Atherton said.
Criket News: “Some say England always seem to be thinking about the game but one in front of them; here, it looked like they were playing the game behind,” Atherton added.
Apart from Jack Leach, England also lost Mark Wood to make room for Stuart Broad and James Anderson. The former was awarded his 150th cap in a Test match. In response to Wood’s absence from the game, Atherton stated:
Criket News: “As a result, Ben Stokes was utilised for lengthy periods in t76 he kind of assertive role that would have been taken by Wood, using fields more reminiscent of Bodyline, nearly 80 years ago,” Atherton said.
Lastly, on day one, Marnus Labuschagne (95*) and David Warner (95) placed Australia in command. Labuschagne, who was granted two reprieves, will bat a gain on day two, aiming for his sixth Test century. After a tense first hour from England, he and Warner combined 172 runs to save the hosts.