ENGLAND seamer James Anderson has revealed that Ashes rivals Australia rebuffed an invitation to share a drink in the wake of their drubbing in the first Investec Test at Cardiff on Saturday.
The hosts continued the attacking brand of cricket on show during their tussles with New Zealand earlier this summer against Australia, while England were also keen to maintain another feature of that series, post-match drinks.
Beers were shared between the two adversaries after each Test of the 2005 series, a level of camaraderie that then Aussie captain Ricky Ponting has since said he regrets. Inter-team drinks have more recently been held at the end of series.
Anderson confirmed that England skipper Alastair Cook had been keen to end that particular protocol but the idea was rejected by his Australian counterpart Michael Clarke.
“It’s Cooky’s idea. He’s the captain, he went and asked them. We were all happy to do it. I don’t know why they didn’t come in. That’s their prerogative,” said Anderson, who claimed three first-innings wickets as Australia lost by 169 runs at Cardiff.
“After the New Zealand series, we had a beer after each game with them. We found that was quite an enjoyable thing, just to chew the fat after a hard Test. It didn’t matter whether we won or lost.
“At Headingley [where England were beaten by New Zealand to tie the series at 1-1], we still went into their dressing room and had a beer with them.”
England head coach Trevor Bayliss has spoken of the need for his side to guard against a backlash from Australia in the second Test at Lord’s, which starts on Thursday, sentiments echoed by Lancashire paceman Anderson.
“With the Australian team, you know that they’re going to come back fighting strong so it puts more pressure on us to make sure we keep improving, but it’s done a great deal for our confidence,” added the 32-year-old.
“It was a great start for us. We knew how crucial it was to start the series well, we didn’t want to be having to fight back into the series. I thought we played outstandingly well for the four days. It was great to see all 11 players contributing with bat and ball in some way. Hopefully we can kick on at Lord’s.”