Sir Ian Botham says England should look into their Test team to bed in a few young talent as they build for the future and plan for the Ashes in Australia in two years time.
Australia retain the urn together with the 2-2 tie, although later clinching a triumph in the fourth and fifth Test at The Oval england drew this summer’s Ashes series.
Botham believes the result is a reflection about the show, adding that Steve Smith along with his 774 runs for the series has proven the difference between the two sides.
“Things swung from that very first Test at Edgbaston,” said Botham. “Australia were both 122-8 and then built those partnerships with the tailenders.
“Steve Smith has been glorious. And he’s been the standout for the series.
“I actually mentioned, if he does not fail today, he is not human. He did fail [scoring 23] however he has been remarkable.
“If you take a close take a look at the 2 sides, then batting was an issue for both, particularly the top purchase. Ben Stokes was Steve Smith for Australia along with the exception for England.
“I think the pace attack of Australia has been exceptional. They have played better cricket than us.
“However, England are at a pretty great place typically, they just require a little bit of fine tuning.
“Together with the bowling, we are in a similar situation to Australia, we’ve got lots of young talent coming through but England should check out the batting line-up.
“Are they really likely to look at younger gamers, which I believe that they should do? It is a couple of years till we are back for the Ashes in Australia – you’ll want to have therefore now is the time to start looking at that.
“In New Zealand, it is a great chance to experiment, take a look and find out exactly what these young men can do. Zac Crawleyplayers like that, who everyone has been discussing.”
Botham was speaking in fantastic and his partner David Gower’s closing stints as broadcasters for Sky Sports after 25 years of support, and he represented on his time behind the mike.
“It’s really been interesting,” he added. “It was the beginning of Sky and that I mentioned at the time,’what are we going to perform? Where are we likely to go for this?’
“They said, we want to bring the sport to the living room of these folks at home viewing. I think we have got close to that.
“It’s been a terrific trip. There’s youthful blood out there, time to proceed. However, it has been wonderful; the parts of the planet we have seen, the games we’ve seen along with the players that have emerged.”
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