'Never seen them play with so much fear' - Michael Vaughan criticises Australia's defensive batting approach
"They are usually so aggressive...they have just sat in to bat a long period of time without remembering you have to put a bit of pressure on the bowlers," Vaughan said.
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In the wake of another tumultuous day of Test cricket at the Oval, Australia managed to secure a slender 12-run advantage over England in the fifth Ashes Test. The day concluded with Australia being dismissed for 295 runs. Following England's thrilling display of batting prowess on the opening day, Australia opted for a cautious approach, responding to England's seamers with a display of immense control and discipline.
Former England captain, Michael Vaughan, voiced his criticism, declaring it as the worst batting performance he has ever witnessed from Australia. He said that they are usually so aggressive and try to take the game forward. But on this occasion, they just sat in to bat for a long period of time without remembering that they were needed to put a bit of pressure on the bowlers.
"They are taking home the urn, but I’ve never seen Australia play with so much fear,” Vaughan candidly expressed during the BBC Test Match Special. "They are usually so aggressive and try to take the game forward. They have just sat in to bat a long period of time without remembering you have to put a bit of pressure on the bowlers. This morning I thought it was the worst I’ve ever seen Australia bat in my time watching them. They never play like that."
Former Australia captain Mark Taylor also expressed his viewpoint, acknowledging England's strong bowling but also emphasizing the need for a more proactive approach.
"No doubt England bowled well, but you have to tell the opposition you are after them as much as they are after you," Taylor said in his analysis on Sky Sports.
While acknowledging the skill of English bowlers, Taylor believed that Australia needed to assert themselves on the field and demonstrate their intent to seize control of the game.
"I’m not suggesting for a minute we try to match Bazball, but be a bit more proactive," Taylor added, referring to an overly aggressive style of play.
Australia's performance has been a topic of scrutiny right through the series, with experts expressing surprise and disappointment at their uncharacteristic approach to the game.