England selectors need to give Joe Root more support, according to Nasser Hussain
England had named an unchanged side from the one that beat the tourists in the opener at Lord’s by 211 runs.
That side had included recalls for spinner Liam Dawson and No3 batsman Gary Ballance, who contributed just 54 runs between them while the former took four wickets for 101.
And in the wake of the defeat at Trent Bridge, England’s sixth loss in eight Tests, Hussain laid into James Whitaker and his panel of selectors.
“The players that are coming in aren’t doing anything for them,” Hussain said on Sky Sports.
Gary Ballance is one of those picked this summer whom Nasser Hussain believes has underperformed
“The ones that are there are. They won at Lord’s not because of Jennings, Ballance or Dawson – they won because of Joe Root.
“The Tests they have won have been because of Ben Stokes, Root, Moeen Ali, Jimmy Anderson or Stuart Broad in Johannesburg.
“The selectors are going to have to have a long hard look at themselves because in the last two years in one-day cricket and now in Test match cricket, their selections have been abysmal.
“You name some lads that have come in: [James] Vince, [Ben] Duckett, [Gareth] Batty, [Zafar] Ansari. I can name a whole long list of them. There is no-one coming in and doing well.
“It’s a sad indictment of county cricket that all those lads are getting runs and wickets but every time they’re picked for England, they’re not. You’ve got to give them a long run – don’t overreact.
“The one that did it, Haseeb Hameed, went back to county cricket and found himself horrendously out of nick.”
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England will now have 10 days’ break before the third Test at the Oval which starts on July 27.
And Hussain believes it will be a much-needed period of refreshment and reconsideration of the brand of cricket played under coach Trevor Bayliss, who has always backed his batsmen to be aggressive, even if it sometimes leads to such meagre performances as the one that saw them today bowled out for just 133.
“The mental toughness of some of those players is found wanting because this is the only way,” Hussain added.
“There is just one way to play. We’re going to be gung-ho, we’re going to lose in four days and it doesn’t matter if we don’t take it into the fifth day.”