Veteran England pacer James Anderson has hit back at Australian Test skipper Tim Paine for his dangerous comments ahead of the upcoming Ashes series.
Last month, Paine had said that the Ashes would go ahead even if England captain Joe Root doesn’t come to Australia.
Notably, several England players, including Root, had expressed concerns over the prospect of hard quarantine due to Australia’s international and internal border restrictions.
“It is dangerous to start talking like that, especially when we already have one player missing because he is looking after his mental health,” Anderson told the UK’s Daily Telegraph as reported by Fox Cricket.
“I get it that this is an Ashes series and we are going to have this bit of pantomime stuff away from the cricket, but let’s keep it respectable.
“It is important everyone knows what to expect when we get there. There is always a lot of hype and noise around the Ashes in the build-up to it. Making everyone aware of that and having ways of blocking it out are important,” he added.
According to Anderson, all the war of words are made to distract England and it is important that the visitors focus on cricket.
“It is designed to distract us. There are always little things that crop up. That is inevitable but it is important we try to focus as much as we can on the cricket. That is our job,” he said.
“Our job is not really to get involved in any off-field war of words. We have to focus on our jobs on the field and perform for our country,” he added.
England squad for the Ashes 2021-22:
Joe Root (c), James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.