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Botham 'embarrassed' by England's Ashes capitulation

Australia's Scott Boland celebrates taking the wicket of England's Jonny Bairstow on Tuesday.
Australia's Scott Boland celebrates taking the wicket of England's Jonny Bairstow on Tuesday.
Image: LOREN ELLIOTT

Former England captain Ian Botham said he was "embarrassed" by the performances of Joe Root's side in the Ashes series after Tuesday's thumping defeat in the third test saw Australia retain the urn with two matches to spare.

England were routed for 68 in their second innings on the way to a humiliating innings and 14-run loss in Melbourne as Australia took a 3-0 lead after winning the Brisbane opener by nine wickets and the second match in Adelaide by 275 runs.

"I'm a little embarrassed, to be honest," Botham said on Australia's Channel 7. "To lose the Ashes in 12 days ... I just think that England have lost their way. The performance today summed it up.

"It's been a walk in the park for the Australians. It burns me to say that but they have completely outplayed England."

Michael Vaughan, another former skipper, said England had not focused on test cricket enough.

"They're a group of players that pride themselves on competing and they've just not managed to find any kind of consistency or skill," Vaughan told Fox Cricket.

"It's not been easy in these times, the England side haven't had a great deal of preparation, but if you want to look for excuses you can, you can always find excuses -- this test match team for quite a while has not been good enough.

"The focus has been on the white ball team and it delivered a World Cup, but we're not a good enough cricketing nation to take our eye off the ball of test match cricket."

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