Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

Early lunch in rain-delayed fifth Ashes Test

Early lunch in rain-delayed fifth Ashes Test

But if England's behaviour off the field has left much to be desired, Root reckons there has not been much wrong with their approach on it.

Before the tour began, Ben Stokes was arrested after an incident in Bristol and has not played for England since.

A magnificent record breaking double hundred from Alastair Cook allowed England the chance of victory, in the fourth Test, only to be thwarted by the weather.

Stokes was arrested in September and is still awaiting the results of a police investigation. You want to be in and around worldwide cricket for as long as you can. Bairstow was involved in a head-butting incident at a Perth bar with Australian opener Cameron Bancroft, although both players downplayed the incident. The captain Steven Smith, meanwhile, took a rare day off the nets due to some back soreness but is expected to be fine to play. It's kind of sometimes a decision of "when do we start shining it one side or the other to get it reversing" and things like that.

Although they drew the fourth Test in Melbourne to remove the threat of a whitewash, England are still without a win in nine matches and seven years in Australia.

1 - This will be Joe Root's first Test appearance at the Sydney Cricket Ground, having been dropped from the side that lost there in January 2014.

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"It would mean a lot to me to give a fairer account of how we've gone about this trip", said Root. The 20-year-old Hampshire star replaces the injured Chris Woakes in an England side that will also include fellow spinner Moeen Ali.

The two New South Wales pacemen have taken 34 wickets between them to help Australia regain the urn, with an unassailable 3-0 lead. Hopefully, there's a bit more spin for Gazza [Lyon] and we saw how important the first couple of games were when the ball spun, how damaging he can be.

Despite the problems and disappointment of this tour, Root wants to be in charge for the next trip to Australia in 2021-22 and believes the planning "must start now".

With almost two months between this match and the first of Australia's tour of South Africa, Starc has the opportunity for a break in between, even if he is named in the squad for the ODI series against England. "It's really important. that we can get a win and build on that for four years' time", he said.

"But it's now making sure that leading up to that next Ashes series, which is a long long way off, there's plenty of opportunities for guys to gain experience and come back really, really ready for it".

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