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As England hit a new low, McGrath says IPL, BBL denting competitive spirit

By IANS

Melbourne, Dec 24: Former Australian pace bowling great Glenn McGrath is not happy with the players of rival teams "joking around" on the field during the Ashes and blames the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the Big Bash League (BBL) for the friendly chatter replacing "emotions out in the middle".

England players were seen casually ribbing home team spinner Nathan Lyon, while pace bowling stalwart Stuart Broad chatted with rival team bowler Mitchell Starc even as the tourists slumped to another ignominious defeat to go 0-2 down in the five-Test series.

"With the IPL (Indian Premier League) and the Big Bash (League), these players know one another well. You see batsmen and bowlers joking around. I'd like to see some emotion out in the middle," McGrath, the second-highest wicket-taker among pace bowlers in the world, was quoted as saying by smh.com.au on Friday.

"Every time you hear one of the English or Australian players interviewed, they use a nickname. "Broady, Jimmy, Kez. I was asking the other day, 'Who's Kez?' 'Oh, Alex Carey.' They're a lot more familiar with each other than we were when I played," added McGrath.

McGrath said all these niceties were taking the competitive spirit away from the Ashes, which are one of the most fiercely-contested cricket series in the world.

"It can be a little bit too nice sometimes. That's the way everything's going, isn't it? There's a lot of political correctness. People are a bit nervous about being aggressive and playing hard. I remember, when (former England skipper) Nasser Hussain came out here with England; they weren't even allowed to talk to us or say 'G'day'," said McGrath, who is second after England's James Anderson for the most number of wickets by pacemen in Test cricket at 563.

The pace bowler said England, who are down 0-2 after losing the Gabba and Adelaide Tests, need to really do some introspection as they are representing their country.

"It's all about body language. How much does it mean, representing your country? England have to go back to the drawing board and have a real good think about this," added McGrath.

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As England hit a new low, McGrath says IPL, BBL denting competitive spirit

Melbourne, Dec 24: Former Australian pace bowling great Glenn McGrath is not happy with the players of rival teams "joking around" on the field during the Ashes and blames the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the Big Bash League (BBL) for the friendly chatter replacing "emotions out in the middle".

England players were seen casually ribbing home team spinner Nathan Lyon, while pace bowling stalwart Stuart Broad chatted with rival team bowler Mitchell Starc even as the tourists slumped to another ignominious defeat to go 0-2 down in the five-Test series.

"With the IPL (Indian Premier League) and the Big Bash (League), these players know one another well. You see batsmen and bowlers joking around. I'd like to see some emotion out in the middle," McGrath, the second-highest wicket-taker among pace bowlers in the world, was quoted as saying by smh.com.au on Friday.

"Every time you hear one of the English or Australian players interviewed, they use a nickname. "Broady, Jimmy, Kez. I was asking the other day, 'Who's Kez?' 'Oh, Alex Carey.' They're a lot more familiar with each other than we were when I played," added McGrath.

McGrath said all these niceties were taking the competitive spirit away from the Ashes, which are one of the most fiercely-contested cricket series in the world.

"It can be a little bit too nice sometimes. That's the way everything's going, isn't it? There's a lot of political correctness. People are a bit nervous about being aggressive and playing hard. I remember, when (former England skipper) Nasser Hussain came out here with England; they weren't even allowed to talk to us or say 'G'day'," said McGrath, who is second after England's James Anderson for the most number of wickets by pacemen in Test cricket at 563.

The pace bowler said England, who are down 0-2 after losing the Gabba and Adelaide Tests, need to really do some introspection as they are representing their country.

"It's all about body language. How much does it mean, representing your country? England have to go back to the drawing board and have a real good think about this," added McGrath.