Legendary England all-rounder Sir Ian Botham was highly critical of the team’s poor display in the recently concluded Ashes 2021-22 series and called it embarrassing and gutless, as the visitors surrendered the fifth and final Test in Hobart to lose the Ashes 4-0. England only managed to draw the Sydney match by a whisker.
Australia was clinical in their performance as they won the first three Tests in dominating fashion. The first match in Brisbane was won by 9 wickets, the second Test in Adelaide, a D/N one was won by a record 275 runs. The third Test of the Ashes and the series was secured in Melbourne by an innings and 14 runs, despite Australia making just 276 runs in their only innings.
England drew the SCG Test with just one wicket in hand and despite a good performance with the ball in the fifth and final Hobart D/N Test, their batting failed to come to the party as Australia pocketed the match by 146 runs and the Ashes 4-0.
“It’s Been Embarrassing, If I Am Honest, Gutless: Sir Ian Botham Slams England Team
Sir Ian Botham, hero of many England’s Ashes victories called the performance of this team gutless and embarrassing. Speaking on Channel 7, Botham slammed England and called for the ECB to renew their focus on first-class cricket.
“It’s been embarrassing if I am honest, gutless. I thought the way that they performed today will have disappointed me and disappointed everyone back home. They should be disappointed in that dressing room as well, with the performance. The one thing we have to do now is take our heads out of the sand and we need to pull together and prioritize red-ball cricket,” Botham said.
He further said that the visitors were steamrolled in the Ashes 2021-22 and some players “could be at the end of their careers”.
“They’ve been completely steam-rolled and … a lot of these guys could be at the end of their careers. And a lot will be sent back to learn how to play at this level because the Australian public wanted a fight and they haven’t had it. It’s disappointing and some of it has been embarrassing – selections, winning the toss and bowling when it’s overcast on a green pitch in Brisbane, where I played for a year and could have told them exactly what it was going to do.
Then we left two guys with 1,156 wickets [James Anderson and Stuart Broad] sitting in the stand and carrying the drinks. There’s been a lot of stuff that doesn’t make sense,” Botham told BT Sport.
England will have a lot of time to ponder over this Ashes disaster when they get home.