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Ashes 2021-22 third test, second day: Australia v England – live! | sport

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Hello everyone and welcome to the live coverage of the second day of the Boxing Day Ash Test. We are in class at Melbourne Cricket Ground at 10:30 am local time (11:30 pm UK).

History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes often, so they say. If so, then England’s Ashes series morphs into something out of Dr Seuss canon.

On day one at MCG, all the familiar failures materialized. Both openers fell cheap, the set hitters came out with mediocre shots, no pressure was applied to Australia’s attack and (although it was minor in comparison) the only real hope for England’s Joe Root failed to convert half a century into a defining test. Goal.

There had been a lot of noise after Adelaide that England had spoken candidly about their performances. This set the tone for conversation throughout a miserable play day: one of England failing to back up its words with action. I think we’ve all intentionally or unintentionally thought about things.

Simply put, England is not very good. They are especially not very good in Australian conditions. They are very extremely especially not very good in Australian conditions against a well-established bowling attack, led by the magnificent Pat Cummins. What happened yesterday was normal. Sometimes it’s that simple.

From England’s perspective, the rest of this series needs to focus on how such a well-funded cricket field can produce a result like this with such consistency. Something very important is wrong and cannot be resolved by questioning a heated debate in a lodge or the angle of an opener’s blade.

That test isn’t over yet, but England’s dismissal in the first set just 65.1 overs after the draw means they’re moving quickly. The next two days promise the best batting conditions at the CWM. A new ignominy for tourists awaits.

I will come back with more information shortly, but if you would like to participate, you can reach me via email or Twitter (@JPHowcroft).

Shirley Bassey could probably do a reasonable job in England’s middle order.


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