@Yas_Wisden 2 minute read
Australia made it 13 wins out of their last 15 home Ashes Tests at Hobart, consigning England to yet another miserable defeat to end a nightmare tour.
16 players represented England at various points in the series – here’s a look at how each of them performed. Beware, it is not pretty reading.
Rory Burns: 2
77 runs @ 12.83, no hundreds; HS: 34
It says something about England that we can legitimately say at the end of the series that Burns – averaging 12.83 – was probably the wrong opener to drop after the Adelaide Test. His first-baller at Brisbane was a fitting opening to the carnage that followed.
Haseeb Hameed: 2
80 runs @ 10, no hundreds; HS: 27
A torrid series for Hameed who was mercifully dropped for the series finale at Hobart. The raw numbers don’t look good; he averages 24.38 from 10 Tests and 31.36 from 87 first-class games.
Zak Crawley: 5
166 runs @ 27.66, no hundreds; HS: 77
A series that accurately sums up where Crawley is as a Test cricketer at the moment. His Sydney 77 was sublime but Crawley always look good once he’s in. He should be given a decent, uninterrupted run in the side.
Dawid Malan: 5
244 runs @ 24.40, no hundreds; HS: 82
Offered genuine resistance alongside Root in the opening two Tests without quite making the kind of match-defining score that would have made either of the two games more competitive. His scores tailed off as the series progressed. Aged 34 and with an average of 27.53 after 22 Tests, he’s not a longterm option at three but should still be considered to do the job for the West Indies tour.
Joe Root: 5
322 runs @ 32.20, no hundreds; HS: 89
He couldn’t paper over the cracks this time. A first Test hundred on Australian soil still eludes the England skipper who struggled to fully negotiate the extra bounce that his side encountered across the series. Like Malan, he failed to make the most of his good starts. Root was also partially responsible for a number of questionable selection calls, not that they had any significant bearing on the final scoreline.
Ben Stokes: 3
236 runs @ 26.30, no hundreds; HS: 66
Four wickets @ 71.50, no five-fors; BBI: 3-113
Expectations were definitely too high going into the series and while his extended time out of the game is a mitigating factor for his underwhelming output with both bat and ball, it doesn’t quite explain the degree of Stokes’ struggles throughout the series. Comprehensively outplayed by his opposite number, the 22-year-old Cam Green.
Ollie Pope: 2
67 runs @ 11.16, no hundreds; HS: 35
A stinker of a series in all truth. Increasingly frenetic and oddly unaware of his bearings batting on off stump given that’s been his stance of choice for the best part of a year.
Jonny Bairstow: 8
194 runs @ 48.50, one hundred; HS: 113
The scorer of England’s sole hundred in the series. The Sydney Test was a timely reminder that Bairstow was, once upon a time, the leading wicketkeeper-batter on the planet.
Jos Buttler: 3
107 runs @ 15.28, no hundreds; HS: 39
His numbers do not take into consideration his stirring rearguard at Adelaide, but aside from that and his brief counter-attack at Brisbane it was a really tough series for Buttler and possibly his last in Test whites.
Sam Billings: 4
30 runs @ 15.00, no hundreds; HS: 29
Kept well at Hobart and was noticeably more chipper than Buttler behind the stumps. It remains to be seen whether or not Billings will end up as another Ashes dead rubber one-cap wonder.
Chris Woakes: 4
146 runs @ 24.33, no hundreds; HS: 44
Six wickets @ 55.33, no five-fors; BBI: 2-64
Relatively toothless with the ball in what was another difficult away Ashes tour for the Warwickshire all-rounder. Now 32, don’t be surprised if Woakes is increasingly used as a home conditions specialist for the remainder of his Test career.
Ollie Robinson: 7
11 wickets @ 25.54, no five-fors; BBI: 3-58
A pretty good series for Robinson, though he’ll want to get rid of his tendency to drop in pace over the course of a day
Stuart Broad: 7
13 wickets @ 26.30, one five-for; BBI: 5-101
Broad showed England what they were missing at Brisbane with a more than respectable trio of performances. At 35, he still has a lot to offer this England side.
James Anderson: 7.5
Eight wickets @ 23.37, no five-fors; BBI: 4-33
Bowled a mesmeric spell at Melbourne, reiterating his freakish longevity at the highest level.
Mark Wood: 8
17 wickets @ 26.64, one five-for; BBI: 6-37
Thoroughly deserved his Hobart six-for. Bowled with real pace and hostility throughout the series and neutered the world No.1 batter, Marnus Labuschagne.
Jack Leach: 3
Six wickets @ 53.50, no five-fors; BBI: 4-84
Mismanaged since the tour of India in early 2021, Leach was chucked in at the deep end at Brisbane after a summer out of the side. Four years into his Test career, he is yet to nail down his spot in the XI across all conditions.