The Ashes 2013-14 November 27, 2013

England 'heartbroken' by Trott departure


Stuart Broad has described the England squad as "heartbroken" by the loss of Jonathan Trott, but insisted the team can bounce back from crushing defeat in Brisbane.

Broad enjoyed a good game personally, but was unable to prevent Australia completing a thumping win by 381 runs. To make matters worse, England were then hit by the news that their highly respected No. 3 batsmen, Jonathan Trott, would miss the rest of the series having decided to return home due to a stress-related illness.

While Trott's departure was uppermost in Broad's mind, he also admitted England had "let ourselves down" in the game. But he remained confident the team had the quality and self-belief to fight their way back into the series.

"It's heartbreaking for us to lose Trotty," Broad said. "He's been part of the side for four or five years and he's a fantastic guy. He gave us a lot of solidity in the number three spot.

"But the important thing is he's got the support of the change room he's played with for 49 Tests. Everyone's looking out for him and hopes he gets a bit of privacy at home to get himself right. We wish him very well from Australia."

While there has been furore in the media about some of the comments - on and off field - that might have contributed to the environment in which a player suffers a stress-related illness, Broad reiterated the England view that they had no problem with any of the on-field comments or actions from their Australian counterparts.

"The on-field stuff has been fine," Broad said. "You're playing in an Ashes Test match against Australia and you expect it to be tough.

"I grew up hearing all sorts of stories about sledging and on the field I don't think a line has been crossed. It's been tough, but we're grown-ups and we train ourselves to expect that."

A couple of issues do clearly still rankle, though. England remain underwhelmed by David Warner's comments made to the media during the game - comments that Alastair Cook has already described as disrespectful - and, perhaps, comments made by Darren Lehmann about Broad during the previous series in England.

"Off the field there have been some mistakes made," Broad said. "As an England side we pride ourselves on how we conduct [ourselves] about the opposition because you never know what's going on in the opposition changing rooms and lives. We just need to stay away from that. I think we have the balance okay at the moment."

Broad accepted that England's performance in Brisbane had been poor, but pointed out that it was far from unique for England to start series poorly and that their record of bouncing back was much better.

"If we judged the English cricket side on the first match of the series then we would be the worst side in the world," he said. "We don't have a good record in that. I can't put my finger on why, but it's something we need to improve.

"We let ourselves down after being in a fantastic position in that Test. We were buzzing at the end of day one after the hard work we put in.

"But we have to be honest: we lost that Test with a 50-minute bit of madness before tea on the second day and naturally we're disappointed in the way that happened. It was an odd one, because it happened so quickly and the dismissals were uncharacteristic, really. There were soft wickets that gave Australia a lift.

"But one thing that we do know is that we can get better throughout the series. We're already focused on bouncing back. This England team has done that on numerous occasions.

"We have a group of players who are strong. They know when they've made mistakes and they are putting them right. We'll be making sure we're ready for the fight again come next Thursday. We need to work on certain technical things that will help us in Adelaide and throughout this Australian tour. We owe that to the fans who have travelled over to see us and also to the changing room as well."

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • JG2704 on November 29, 2013, 9:30 GMT

    Re IPSY'S post - Why can't people just accept that people in life in general suffer from stress?

    Here's a theory . I'm sure many people in life suffer from stress/depression but get by their day by day duties as best they can without too much difficulty. Then sometimes it gets too much - and I'm not saying the workload but what they have going on in their head - that they can no longer function to the best of their ability in whatever profession theyre in. Could it be that Trott - who comes across as a very balanced/intellegent man - just recognised that the stress issues which he had dealt with for years were now starting to affect his performance and rather than fight those demons and risk his condition worsening by carrying on he decided it best for himself and the team to take a break from the tour.But I will also say that Bell had been in a far worse state (battingwise) during the UAE tour and wasn't dropped so can't see that being the case

  • YorkshirePudding on November 29, 2013, 6:03 GMT

    @IPSY, lots of prevarication in your post, firstly England dont drop a batsman after a couple of bad games anymore, if anything the top 6 in the england order have had a prolonged run of being out of form.

    We do not know what happened in the dressing room however it was probably an attempt to get Trott to stay rather than Leave, and it seems like Trott has made the decision he felt was right. It should also be noted that Trott appears to have been suffering with his condition for sometime.

  • IPSY on November 28, 2013, 14:23 GMT

    It's so sad to hear about Trott! Let's hope he recovers quickly - he's a brilliant player! However, I'm of the view also, that what is causing him stress, his POOR FORM recently has exacerbated the situation! I don't know what he was told in the team meeting just after the match; but that had to be meeting of candid opinions! Was he told of being dropped, and decided that it's better to leave on his own, instead of worsening his mental situation, with that indignity? After all, Trott had been a very important spoke in the England batting wheel! But except for a single player in world cricket, selectors seem not to have any patience with out-of-form players - even for two matches! I also theorised recently, that some batsmen are half gifted and half mechanically/synthetically made, via intensive net sessions - Trott falls into the latter group. I noted also that when this brand runs into form problems, they get stuck for 2 and 3 years and must practice hard to recover! Geniuses not so?

  • dummy4fb on November 28, 2013, 11:12 GMT

    Cricket can be played in two ways. Firstly teams can play the false anger in a rather child-like way as displayed by many teams today. I am ashamed to admit to playing village cricket like this. What a fool! The alternative is to play genuine hard cricket but showing good manners and a true love for the game as observed by the following fine men and cricketers...Alan Knott, Bob Woolmer, Derek Underwood, Alan Brown, and, of course, Colin Cowdrey. Kent to a man and all the better for it.

  • mvm77 on November 28, 2013, 9:49 GMT

    There is no denying that stress levels have gone up in public life and being professional cricketers, these folks have to cope up with a whole lot of that. But this is the 2nd time, an english cricketer has pulled out in the midst of an important tour citing "stress illness". Just wondering if this whole thing is a very "English" problem !! Or if they are the only ones being open about this.

  • Not_Another_Keybored_Expert on November 28, 2013, 9:38 GMT

    If you have a problem with that then I think you're being to sensitive ( A huge part of this article is about sledging), I don't see a connection to me asking for both sides of a story to whether or not Aus media published the results of tests played up to 4 years ago.

  • YorkshirePudding on November 28, 2013, 8:32 GMT

    @Ambrish Saxena, you're not the only one, but gone are the days that they would report on the cricket only, now adays like tabloid journalism they write about things they heard from someone who overheard someone talking about something cricketers said over dinner/breakfast.

    In the end sedging is part of the game on the field as the player can respond or ignore it, sledging off the field is another thing as they can only respond through the media who then make it into a mountain, in order to justify themselves.

  • dummy4fb on November 28, 2013, 8:06 GMT

    Am I the only one who is getting completely irritated by numerous number of articles on cricinfo regarding sledging, behavior crossing line etc.

    I mean come on its part of the game and to hell with the idea that its a gentleman's game while exchange of words, stares etc have always been part of the game.

    Why don't these reporters just focus on cricket.

  • jmcilhinney on November 28, 2013, 7:39 GMT

    @Not_Another_Keybored_Expert on (November 28, 2013, 6:47 GMT), I have a problem with that because this is not a story about sledging. It's a story about Stuart Broad's take on all the goings on. Do stories about Australia's win in Brisbane have to also mention England's wins in the last three Ashes?

  • Rahul_78 on November 28, 2013, 7:04 GMT

    I guess only way back for England is through their big 4. Cook, KP, Broad and Anderson. These are the big daddy's of English cricket. Swann I have excluded because he is looking shadow of himself and seems to be under the cosh, grumpy and not happy. Not the usually cheerful and chirpy fellow we are used to. These four has the game, skill sets and temperament to channel all the hostilities, pressure and adversaries into their performances. These guys from henceforth need to bring their A game to the table and deliver big and deliver consistently. Ausies know it very well that they should not rile KP too much and have kept away from it. May be Cook needs to be innovative with his man management and try to steer KP up. He is an ego player and stage is set for him to display his skills. This is a 5 match series and POMs are just 1 down. There is long way to go. Aussies still have fragile batting line up and a skipper with dodgy back. There are weakness which POMs need to exploit.