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It was worth a shot but ex-England star Kevin Pietersen has come to the wrong place at the wrong time if he expects sympathy for his former team ahead of the Boxing Day Test.
With the Poms 2-0 down after two Tests and already checking the departures board at Sydney Airport, Pietersen took to Twitter to implore fans: "PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE just give these England cricketers a bit of slack."
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"An Ashes tour is incredibly tough & these are not normal times right now. Their batting is horrendous, I know, but go easy please!" he said.
His post finished with a 'hands praying' emoji, but the bloke upstairs is rather busy at this time of the year and, besides, he knows little about forward defensives.
Does KP actually believe a 70,000-strong MCG crowd, after a few cold lubricants, will go easy on the battered and battle-scarred Poms?
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE just give these England cricketers a bit of slack.
An #Ashes tour is incredibly tough & these are not normal times right now.
Their batting is horrendous, I know, but go easy please! 🙏🏽
— Kevin Pietersen🦏 (@KP24) December 20, 2021
Rangers fans clapping Celtic onto Ibrox? The Everton faithful singing You'll Never Walk Alone to make Liverpool feel welcome at Goodison Park?
Pietersen's sentiment comes from a good place but now is not the time to lift the slipper from England's throat.
Only one team in Ashes history has lost a series from two-up – England in 1936/37 - and returning Australia skipper Pat Cummins has no plans of joining a statistic cricket nerds will salivate over 100 years from now.
Kevin Pietersen's calls for England sympathy come too late
Pietersen did get one thing bang on – England's batting has been horrendous.
You can produce all the heat maps, flow charts, balls played at and balls left you like, but it will help little when the heat is applied in the middle.
Former England skipper Michael Vaughan knows this first-hand and called it out.
"It's alright making excuses but it's just not good enough," he said.
"There’s not a good enough array of players that can bat 130 overs in these conditions against a bit of quality, knowing exactly where their off-stump is, knowing exactly the method of how they’re going to score runs over here.
"I don’t think, other than Joe (Root) and Dawid Malan and (Ben) Stokes — who’s a scrapper and a fighter you know will find a way — that there’s (anyone who is) high class.
"The rest of them, I just don’t think in their own mind they have any real identity of how they’re going to score runs in Australia."
Can we suggest a Boxing Day Test at the cauldron is the last place to try and work things out.
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