England captain Joe Root has urged his side to harness “the desire”, “the fight” and “the pride” that they showed in Sydney ahead of the fifth and final Ashes Test in Hobart.
The tourists earned a draw via a nail-biting finish at the SCG, with Stuart Broad and Jimmy Anderson called upon to bat out the final overs of day 5.
The series may be lost but there is still an awful lot to play for in the fifth Test at Hobart, which begins at 4am on Friday morning in the UK, with England looking to move forward positively in 2022.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Root issued a rallying cry ahead of the fifth Test and called upon his side to show their quality from ball one in the final match of the series.
He said: “If you look at the week that we had, the amount of different things that were thrown at the group of players – whether it was Covid leading into the game or a couple of injuries we had to manage throughout the game as well – I think it shows a lot about where we are at as a team.
“On the back of three difficult games where we’ve underperformed, not shown the best of our skills and our performance as a team, to come back and get something from that game showed a great amount of character and something definitely for us to build on moving forward – whether it be this game or beyond.
“There was an element of relief as well, managing to get through those last few overs in particular, but the desire, the fight, the pride that everyone showed out there on that last day, in particular. It’s something that we have to harness and play with more frequently throughout the five days not just on the last day when everything is on the line and we’re trying to get something from the game but from ball one as well.
“We’ve proven to ourselves that we can do that now, can we take that a step further? Can we make sure that we do that in a winning state rather than just trying to save a Test match?
“That’s what we have to build on, that’s what we have to take from the last game and into this one.”