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We can still save The Ashes - Michael Clarke

We can still save The Ashes - Michael Clarke
Michael Clarke believes that Australia can still bounce back in the ongoing Trent Bridge Test to save the urn from going England's way.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australian captain Michael Clarke believes that his side can still bounce back in the ongoing Trent Bridge Test to save the urn from going England's way.

While expressing disappointment at Australia’s shocking batting performance that saw the visitors being bowled for a mere 60 runs inside 19 overs, Clarke feels that his team has to hang in there until the end.

Australia’s bowlers went the same disastrous route as their batsmen with England galloping to a 214-run lead by stumps led by an unbeaten century from Joe Root.

“We weren't as good as we need to be with the ball, but it doesn't help when you've only got 60 runs," said Clarke after the close of play on day one.

"We can still find a way to save the Ashes, but we've got to fight."

With England already having already established a big lead and with four days still left in the game, Australia’s chances of staging a comeback in the match look improbable.

Although Australia are staring down the barrel with the urn hanging by a thread, Clarke chose to look at the positive possibilities ahead.

"As a captain you need to be as positive as you can be.

“It has been an extremely tough day but we have to turn up tomorrow and bowl England out.

"If we can then get a big score you never know what could happen."

The Australian skipper didn’t forget to heap praise on England pacer Stuart Broad, whose incredible spell of eight for 15 rolled over the visitors in short order.

After being put into bat under overcast conditions on another green pitch, Australia’s batsmen repeated their mistakes of the Edgbaston Test and if anything sunk deeper with their rash shot selection.

Clarke admitted that the match had started in the worst possible manner for the Australian team that is facing a do-or-die encounter this match.

"I'm really disappointed with how the day has turned out, but it's only one day down.

"We've got to find a way.

“I think we were mentally up for the fight, obviously it doesn't look like we were, but I don't want to take anything away from Stuart Broad, and England were brilliant in the field."

The 33-year-old wasn’t able to come up with a proper explanation for his side’s inexcusable batting display, but dismissed speculations that unnecessary aggression caused the batting failure.

Clarke, who has been undergoing a wretched series with the bat, was himself guilty of gifting his wicket when he slashed hard at a wide half volley to be caught in the slips.

"I don't think it was the aggression that got us out - I tried to be aggressive and with that comes risk.

"We tried to defend and got out and we tried to play shots and got out.”

Only Clarke and pacer Mitchell Johnson got to double figures as the Australian batsmen made it a procession of sorts with their quick dismissals.

While accepting his side's below-par batting performance, Clarke also opined that the pitch was a tricky one to bat one especially first up in the morning under overcast conditions.

"There's no doubt we didn't bat well but they were as tough a batting conditions as I have faced," Clarke said.

"You still have to have the skill to put the ball in the right areas and the England catching was exceptional."

Australia's terrible display with the bat saw them set the record for the shortest ever first innings in Test cricket history.

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