England heads to the nets, Aussies rest - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

England heads to the nets, Aussies rest

07/11/2006 05:56:51 AM Comments (0)

England will head to the nets for the first time this Ashes tour, while Australia's cricketers will head home for a couple of days rest.

The England players will hold a net session indoors at 9.30am (AEDT), which will be closed to the public and media.

It will be England's first net session of the tour, after the players arrived on Sunday and held a media session on Monday.

Australia's players, meanwhile, will return home after their Champions Trophy victory in India, and no doubt enjoy their last break before trying to regain the Ashes.

Captain Ricky Ponting will arrive at Sydney Airport on Tuesday morning, and will hold a press conference at 10am (AEDT).

Most of the Australian players will get the chance to play for their states in the next Pura Cup round before the first Test, in Brisbane starting November 23.

England will fly to Canberra on Thursday to begin preparations for its official start to the tour, a one-day match against the Prime Minister's XI on Friday.

Meanwhile, England star Kevin Pietersen has challenged Australia to maintain a fierce but friendly contest during the Ashes and reject any thoughts of changing tack from last year.

Former Australian stars Allan Border, Mark Waugh and Merv Hughes have all claimed recently that Ponting's men were too pally with the old enemy during last year's series, which England won 2-1.

Ponting's side is yet to declare what sort of approach it will take when it tries to regain cricket's oldest prize.

Pietersen, who has a strong friendship with legspinner Shane Warne, was hopeful both sides would continue on from last time, when the sides traded blows on the field and beers off it.

"The way the series was played was fantastic," he said.

"That's how sport should be played.

"As tough as it is, as mentally draining as it was on the field from nine o'clock in the morning until six o clock that night, then as human beings you can have a drink afterwards and you can chat and you can be friends."

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