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Australia v England, 4th Test, Melbourne, 3rd day

Ashes loss will be 'horrendous' - Watson

Peter English at the MCG

December 28, 2010

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Shane Watson played a number of crisp strokes on his way to fifty, Australia v England, 4th Test, Melbourne, 3rd day, December 28, 2010
Shane Watson: 'The most important thing was winning that little urn and we haven't been able to do it' © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Shane Watson
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Shane Watson says it will be "shattering" and "horrendous" to be part of the first Australian side in 24 years to finish a home Ashes series without the urn. The hosts, who last lifted the prize in 2007, are only four wickets from a defeat that will ensure England retain the tiny trophy that means so much.

"It's not very good, it's horrendous, to be totally honest," Watson said after the side finished day three at 6 for 169, still 246 from making England bat again. "Going into this Ashes series we knew how important it would be to win the Ashes because Australia hasn't lost the Ashes in 24 years."

England have two days to take the four wickets needed to earn a 2-1 lead and while the contest could finish level in Sydney next week, that will be no consolation for the local men. "The most important thing is winning that urn back," Watson said. "Obviously we will do everything we can to restore pride and draw the series, but the most important thing was winning that little urn and we haven't been able to do it."

Watson, who top scored with a smooth 54, said it was "shattering" to be in this position a week after hitting back so strongly in Perth. He was also concerned about driving people away with the side's poor play here and during the second Test in Adelaide.

"The Australian fans have come out and supported us and we haven't given them anything to support," he said. "We really do have to go out there in Sydney and try to keep some of our supporters and fans onside. The way we've played, we might have turned a few people off. We're going to have to restore that."

Peter English is the Australasia editor of Cricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by 5wombats on (December 29, 2010, 4:02 GMT)

@ashes61; I agree with you - The Ashes are a strictly England / Australia thing. I'm not sure why there are so many sub-continental posters on cricinfo Ashes conversations. Often their comments are inappropriate or irrelevent. @Miles Davis; "As the for the Ashes, its an overrated, relatively meaningless cup".... yeah right - so why are you so interested in it then? If you don't like it - go away....

Posted by   on (December 29, 2010, 2:06 GMT)

Don't let go Ashes from your Heart Aussies, there is still a chance of levelling the series. Pointing is having the greatest attitutde of being a perfect sportsman. Common punter, where are you? We need to see your play.

Posted by Anil_Venugopal on (December 29, 2010, 1:33 GMT)

The decline started 2 years ago in Sydney after the infamous test match against India, who broke their aura of invincibility. SA and England have now battered them, that too in Australia.

Posted by   on (December 29, 2010, 1:07 GMT)

They just have to make mass changes. No more carrying injured players - Ponting, Clarke and Harris have to go. No more carrying woefully out of form players either - Phil Hughes has to go. I'd like to see Khawaja opening with Ferguson and Cameron White in the middle order and make White the captain. I think Nathan Hauritz has to play and I'd like to make room for Steve O'Keefe too, though at whose expense is another issue - probably Hilfenhaus to go.

Posted by Dissenter57 on (December 29, 2010, 1:00 GMT)

Has anyone seen the US cricket side? They appear to have gone walkabout, though no one here cares enough to report them missing. 98 runs scored and 513 yielded is more their speed than that of the Aussies. They may be impersonating the Aussies.

Posted by chickhabit on (December 29, 2010, 0:18 GMT)

Nothing beats the cockiness of this English team that is half South African...please do not forget this Pommies...If it was left to English born players you would end up your football team....You might win The Ashes and deservedly so but never have you sat at the top of World cricket or won a world cup....so please enjoy this as history shows that you will soon become the whipping boys once again

Posted by   on (December 29, 2010, 0:06 GMT)

3 wickets away now. :) Mitchell Johnson out.

Posted by Brightonbumpkin on (December 28, 2010, 23:52 GMT)

The Aussie 'fans' are an absolute disgrace. It is a standard joke that they turn up in fancy dress each day - dressed as plastic chairs... I got into cricket during the Atherton era - we were not only used to losing, but fully expected it. As long as the players were busting a gut and trying, we supported them, earning the title 'Barmy Army'. Barmy for passionately following a losing cause. The second Australia have an iffy day, their support disappears. Pathetic.

Posted by mfin27 on (December 28, 2010, 23:44 GMT)

So much fun to see cocky Australians go down. Especially seeing Ricky go down is to like seeing a cruel dictator being put to the gallows. How arrogant he used to behave when McGrath, Warne used to dominate the other teams. Now look at him! Picking fights with umpires. LOL.

And totally disagree with the poster above who says England team is not a good team. This England team is at par with South Africa right now if not better. In fact, this is one of the best English teams I have seen in my cricketing life i.e. the past twenty five years.

Posted by   on (December 28, 2010, 23:18 GMT)

SCG test match would be a fun. Ausies will not have anything to loose while going up with 2-1 :) i really wanna see Swann`s magical bowling in SCG. He will thrash OZIES as SCG wicket is blue-eyed for spinners and typical swan`s kinda pitch.. I am loving every bit of Ashes. Momentum has changed several times in these tests but England kept their nerves cool and head down for the encounter. Especially, after loosing by huge margin at WACCA perth with the hands of OZIEs, England were likely to loose winning momentum and people had started to call OZIEs favorites again for the ASHES. But England came back strongly as Pieterson, some days ago, remarked that they will not get trapped of Johnson in swinging bowling and their batsmen would respond better in the 4th test. Pieterson was banged on. England deserves to enjoy every bit of this match. They had won on the very first day, after thrashing OZIES just for 90 plus runs. And boy, have not they batted well ? massive monumental performance

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