Gooch expecting uphill battle

Batting coach Graham Gooch has admitted England are going to have to do something special if they are to avoid an Ashes series whitewash against Australia (Australia 1/16 draw 40/1 England 10/1 – Fifth Test Betting).

The tourists are starring down the barrel of a fifth consecutive Test defeat Down Under, as they sit 311 runs behind the Baggy Greens, after only mustering a first innings total of 155 in Sydney.

With Ben Stokes top scoring with 47 before being bowled by Peter Siddle, once again England struggled to build an innings against an Australian bowling attack which has dominated the tourists throughout the series.

Gooch has admitted England’s batting has not been up to scratch and feels his side have a mountain to climb if they are to avoid a 5-0 series defeat to their old rivals.

He told Sky Sports: “It’s going really tough from here on in because this is not the flattest of pitches.

“Having seen the pitch behave over the two days, (Australia’s) 326 in the first innings was way above par as a score in my opinion.

“As for us today – there were one or two decent balls and one or two poor decisions in terms of batting. That’s the way it’s gone all the way through the series, we’ve not been able to get to grips with their bowling.”

Australia will resume play on day three on 140-4, with Chris Rogers (73) and George Bailey (20) set to start in the middle, looking to extend the home nation’s lead and compound England’s misery.

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