Australia believes it has got the measure of England’s Jonathan Trott, whose Ashes struggles showed no signs of abating yesterday.
England’s number three batsman, Trott was a disappointment in the year’s first Ashes in England, averaging under 30 during the home team’s 3-0 triumph.
The lean patch continued yesterday as Mitchell Johnson bounced him out for the second time in the Brisbane Ashes opener, after Trott’s fluffed flick found Nathan Lyon at deep square leg.
Australian opening batsman David Warner, who made a brisk 124 yesterday, was quick to rub salt into the 32-year-old batsman’s wounds.
“The way that Trotty got out today was pretty poor and weak. Obviously there’s a weakness there and we’re on top of it at the moment,” Warner told reporters. “He’s probably worked hard in the nets on the short ball, but trying to face a 150 kph short ball from Mitch Johnson, the way to go is probably not trying to back away,” was Warner’s advise to the player who has played 26 more tests than the Australian southpaw.
“I think he’s got to get new sledges [insults] as well, because it’s not working for him at the moment,” added Warner.
Trott, who scored 10 and 9 in the match, had a narrow escape against Johnson earlier yesterday when his top-edged pull landed safely between two fielders, underlining his discomfort against the bounce.
He looked at sea against the left-arm paceman in the first innings as well, playing away from his body to guide a rising Johnson delivery to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.
Teammate James Anderson threw his weight behind Trott, saying the South Africa-born right-hander, who averages over 47 in tests, would come out stronger during the course of the five-match series.
“A guy like that doesn’t average 50 in test cricket because he can’t play the short ball,” Anderson said. “He can, he’s obviously having a tough ‘trot’ at the moment. He’s going through a difficult period, and we know that he’s got a lot of character and a lot of skill, and enough to come out the other end.”