England to sort through its own ashes - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

England to sort through its own ashes

By Daniel Brettig 06/12/2006 06:14:03 AM Comments (0)

Down and almost out, England will on Wednesday drag itself from Adelaide to Perth for a week in which it must reassess its so far disastrous approach to defending the Ashes won so boldly in 2005.

The Australians, meanwhile, will be in celebratory mode for some time yet after registering a victory Shane Warne called their best in more than 14 years.

Australia took its commanding 2-0 series lead after a remarkable last-day performance to win the second Test by six wickets.

Leg-spinner Warne took 4-49 to help bowl England out for 129 in its second innings before the home side knocked off its target of 168 with 19 balls to spare.

Despite their happiness at winning, the Australians know that England threw away a chance to keep the series at 1-0 after two Tests, doing so with a negative approach that reflected the dour countenance of coach Duncan Fletcher.

Captain Andrew Flintoff defended a mindset that allowed only 70 runs to eke from English bats in 54 overs on Tuesday, but acknowledged that something big would need to happen if the Ashes were to return to England with him.

"It's tough when you lose wickets," he said.

"Paul Collingwood, he's got to get his head down and bat on with grit like he does and he was working and working and working and runs were hard to come by at that stage," he said.

"Losing wickets is always going to dry the runs up."

Looking ahead, Flintoff said his men would do anything to get rid of the rotten feeling currently in the pits of their stomachs.

"It is a big challenge for us now," he said.

"Two down in an Ashes series with three games to play, we can't mope around too much but this is going to hurt, this game.

"But we've just got over a week before the next one.

"Personally, feeling like this and the way the lads are feeling, I don't want to feel like this again so there's a big incentive for us."

Warne, who admitted to great fatigue after ripping through more than 80 overs in Adelaide, said he had never bowled better.

"I don't think I can bowl any better than I did today, I don't think I bowled much garbage, probably half a dozen bad balls, but I couldn't have bowled much better," he said.

"I bowled some wronguns, toppies, leggies, if I can bowl like that for the rest of the series I hopefully might cause a few of Duncan Fletcher's boys a bit more trouble."

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