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Ashes 2021: “In my mind, I was 100 per cent preparing to play..”: Stuart Broad on not playing Gabba Test

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As if the omission of James Anderson from the 1st Test Match wasn’t a big surprise, English fans soon realized that the team is also without the services of Stuart Broad. A brave decision, as England captain later termed it in the post-match press conference, applause and criticism of it in cricket often emerge once the result is in hindsight.

While England tried to be brave, luck wasn’t on their side. They won the toss but decided to bat on a tricky pitch which did not reveal clear indications about its nature until Australian seamers provided it to be seamer-friendly. The weather too betrayed them, being overcast throughout their batting and pouring rain when the time for the Australians came for batting. England hoped for the overcast conditions on Day 2 but was provided with a clear sky and beaming sun from the Weather God, making their bowler’s life terrible.

The decision to rest the duo for the Pink ball Day-night test match would have been applauded if England would have put on a fight in the 1st test match. While it seemed that Anderson may have been rested out because of an injury scare, the decision to leave Broad out brought speculations that perhaps the tall, lanky fast bowler was going through a niggle, if not an injury.

However, such was not the case, as revealed by the bowler himself. In his column for DailyMail, Broad confirmed that he was fit for the 1st test match and was raring to go. In his own words, “Of course, in my mind I was 100 per cent preparing to play and that’s especially important given my role. As a new-ball bowler, you are faced with bowling one of the most high-pressured deliveries in world sport. “

The move was similar to the decision of Virat Kohli’s leaving off R. Ashwin on all Test matches of the English tour despite the coach hinting signs in the last two matches that the pitch and conditions are likely to assist a spinner. Broad commented that being in playing eleven is in the hands of the selection and not in players, however, the bowler felt that his Calf injury during the India home series was the reason he wasn’t picked up in the first time as the team did not want to throttle him without having a test match under his belt.

The second test match will now be played from 16th of December on Adelaide. It is very likely that both Broad and Anderson will make a comeback. The two players seeming to make an exit for the duo are Jack Leach and Chris Woakes.

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