Australia wouldn`t drink with England: James Anderson

James Anderson revealed Monday that Australia would not share a drink with England after the tourists` crushing defeat in the first Ashes Test.

AFP| Updated: Jul 13, 2015, 23:36 PM IST
Australia wouldn`t drink with England: James Anderson

London: James Anderson revealed Monday that Australia would not share a drink with England after the tourists` crushing defeat in the first Ashes Test.

England won the first Test by 169 runs, with more than a day to spare, at Cardiff on Saturday to go 1-0 up in the five-match series heading into Thursday`s second Test at Lord`s.

Anderson said England and New Zealand had shared drinks, regardless of results, following both matches in their drawn 1-1 Test series in England earlier this season.

England captain Alastair Cook invited Australia counterpart Michael Clarke and his side into the home dressing room after England` emphatic fourth day win but was rebuffed.

Anderson, England`s record Test wicket-taker, was at a loss to explain why.

"That`s their (the Australians) prerogative," said Anderson at the launch of a new documentary film about a cricket team of Maasai warriors entitled `Warriors` in London on Monday. 

"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 lost to end the series all square at 1-1), we still went into their dressing room and had a beer with them.

"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 (the Australians) didn`t come in."

Having a drink with your opponents after the end of a match has been a part of all levels of cricket, and especially Australian cricket, for generations.

Indeed during the 2005 Ashes series, widely regarded as one of cricket`s greatest contests, the teams split a beer after each match.

However, then Australia captain Ricky Ponting said afterwards that what he felt was an excessively friendly atmosphere contributed to his side`s defeat.

In recent years in Test cricket, the practice has been for teams to share a drink at the end of a series but not before. 

Before the present series started, there was much talk about whether `sledging` or verbal abuse of opposition players would be as much a feature as it was in Australia`s 5-0 home rout of England during the last Ashes campaign in 2013/14.

Anderson, once rarely shy of indulging in `verbals` himself, decided as a result of the sporting atmosphere prevailing during the New Zealand series to give up on the practice and he said there was no problem with on-field relations between England and Australia in Cardiff. 

"It was probably different from my point of view, because we were really focused on our skills," Anderson said.

"We weren`t fussed about trying to create any battles between us and their batsmen, any individual players or anything."

Anderson added: "I enjoyed it. I really enjoyed the game. I thought it was played in a great spirit. We had a lot of fun."

Warriors was given it`s premiere at the Curzon Cinema in Soho, central London, on Monday.