Apologising for the Ashes defeat Down Under, ECB managing director Ashley Giles has called for systematic changes in English cricket, but stressed that mass sacking is not the solution for the team’s recent struggles in Test cricket.
England trail the ongoing five-match Ashes series 0-3. The visitors were completely outplayed in the first three games.
Australia lost the Boxing Day Test by an innings and 14 runs inside two days and a session, while a dominant Australia had won the first Test by nine wickets in Brisbane and then registered a convincing 275-run victory in the next match in Adelaide.
“I absolutely feel the responsibility of losing this Ashes series,” Giles told ‘BBC Sport’.
“We all do and we can only apologise. I know there will be a lot of emotion, a lot of anger about how we’ve lost it. But we know it’s not an easy place to come. In the last 34 years we’ve come here and won once (in 2010-11).
“We’ve not done well in terms of results. In the 1990s (a similar record) was accepted as normal for England leadership and they got away with it. We set our standards much higher than that,” he added.
England have lost a record nine Tests in 2021 and the Ashes defeat has led to speculations regarding the future of Test skipper Joe Root and head coach Chris Silverwood, while Giles role is also under the scanner.
But the former England spinner feels changing leadership without addressing systematic shortcomings will not help English cricket.
“Unless we look at more systemic change, a collective responsibility, and collective solutions, we can’t make whatever changes we want.
“You can change me, we can change the head coach and change the captain, but we’re only setting up future leaders for failure. That’s all we do. It’s only pushing it down the road.”
Giles said the ECB will be reviewing the tour.
“We will review the tour, obviously. Everything will be on the table.
“We’ve got two Test matches left, the series might be lost, but we’ve got two matches we can make an impact on and we’ve got to try to.”
Giles blamed England’s domestic cricket set up for the country’s failure to prepare players for international assignments.
“Are we creating (domestic) conditions that will allow us to better prepare our cricketers for playing in the conditions out here? I’m not sure we are at the moment.”
“What we play, when we play, on what (pitches) we play – that’s a collective responsibility. It’s up to us as ECB but also a conversation to have with the counties,” he said.