Johannesburg: England legends Sir Ian Botham, Geoffrey Boycott and Michael Vaughan have unequivocally slammed team`s embarrassing performance against New Zealand in the first Test match in Dunedin.
England was dismissed for a paltry 167 in two sessions on a tame pitch on Thursday to put New Zealand in control of the match as they cruised to 131 without loss at stumps, and finishing a rain-curtailed day three at 402-7 with a lead of 235 runs.
Botham, who was full of praise for Black Caps captain Brendon McCullum`s tactical nous, said England`s performance is one of the worst, if not the worst.
Botham added he is at loss to explain their embarrassing performance, adding he thought New Zealand did well and the captain was exceptional but you can``t get bowled out for 167 on this surface.
Former England captain Vaughan also lashed the England performance, calling the batsmen sloppy and lacking respect for the game, Sport24 reports. Vaughan said England didn`t respect the game, adding they took the mickey out of Mr Cricket, and their mindset has been over-confident, as they weren`t prepared to do the hard yards.
Vaughan added all England had to do was respect, do the basics and see off the new ball to lay the foundations, adding they saw them do that in India (before Christmas) but the majority of the batting order, and it was the majority, not one or two didn`t turn up.
Boycott, renowned for his scrupulous preparation in his playing days, said England`s preparation simply wasn`t good enough, adding he hopes someone tells managing director Hugh Morris, who is probably sleeping back in England, when he wakes up that they are talking about the poor preparation.
Boycott added England was sloppy, careless, and he feels there`s almost a holiday atmosphere.