Thursday 27 October 2016

Johnson brings English 'scars back out'

Published 18/07/2015 | 02:30

Mitchell Johnson of Australia says he has opened up old English scars
Mitchell Johnson of Australia says he has opened up old English scars

Stuart Broad and Mitchell Johnson offered contrasting takes on the reasons for England's batting collapse on day two of the second Ashes Test, but there was no disagreement about Australia's dominant position at Lord's.

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Having toiled in the field for five sessions as the tourists racked up 566-8 declared, Broad believes England's top order "didn't switch on" as they slumped to 30-4.

But Johnson, who wiped out Gary Ballance's off-stump and then dismissed danger man Joe Root for one, hinted that he had reopened some of the scars that brought him 37 wickets in the 2013/14 whitewash.

Wherever the truth lies does not change the match position, with England reaching stumps on 85-4 and facing an uphill battle to avoid the follow-on.

"It's always a tricky period when you've conceded a lot of runs to then go out and bat for 30 overs," said Broad, who returned 4-83 in the first innings.

"I think mentally we didn't switch on for 20 minutes - and lost four wickets."

Johnson had England on the run during a fast, imposing spell and took delight in his role after a quiet Test in Cardiff.

Asked if he felt like the bowler who tormented England 18 months ago, he said: "I hope so. That'd be nice, to have those scars come back out.

"Nothing's changed for me. It's always nice to go out there and perform and to bowl at good pace."

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