Tufnell: England got away with it

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta

Phil Tufnell on Steve Harmison and Arsenal:

Jason Gillespie on England’s Timewasting:

We may be on a three-day break between Ashes Test Matches, but the England v Australia rivalry is as fierce as ever between ex-International cricketers Phil Tufnell and Jason Gillespie.

The feisty pair were preparing for one-of-a-kind race in a bid to prove who’s the fastest on the grass. It’s the Betfair Lawn Mower Grand Prix – the latest in a series of challenges organised by Betfair fanvfan.com, where cricket fans can back either Tufnell or Gillespie and be in with a chance of facing an over from one of the bowling maestros.

TheSportReview.com caught up with the two bowlers before their race to get their thoughts on the First Ashes Test in Cardiff.

43-year-old ex-England and Middlesex spin bowler Tufnell, said England were lucky to snatch a draw.

“It was a fantastic finish to a great test match,” he told The Sport Review.

“England got away with it, but it’s good news for them as I think Australia will see it as a loss. And on the other hand, England will see it as a victory: 0-0 at Lord’s and still in with a fight.”

He went on to say that England must look to improve their batting performance when the second Test gets underway at Lord’s on Thursday.

“I think the boys [England] need to take a look at the game,” he continued.

“They need to bat for longer, even though they got 420 in that first innings – that should have been 500 or 520s. And they needed to take more wickets, but it was a hard wicket to bowl on.”

‘Tuffers’ also wasn’t surprised to see fast-bowler Steve Harmison left out of the squad for the first Test.

“I wasn’t surprised to see him left out for that pitch,” he said. “England were always going to go in with two spinners.”

“But it will be a different kettle of fish at Lord’s, whether they pick Harmison or Onions, or both – I’m not sure. It’s something for the selectors to think about.”

Meanwhile 34-year-old Jason Gillespie wasn’t impressed by the ‘time-wasting’ tactics that England allegedly employed at the end of the final day.

“There have been all sorts of excuses, but there was no doubt that the England physios were sent out to waste a bit of time – they were trying to waste precious minutes,” he explained.

However, he went on to say that he doesn’t believe that it was the reason that the match ended in a draw.

“I’m not saying we would have bowled them out – Panesar and Anderson were looking very comfortable anyway.”

At the end of it all, it was Tufnell that did his country proud when he won the closely contested five-lap mower race. You can find out more about the upcoming challenges at fanvfan.com.

Phil Tufnell gears up for his Lawnmower race agains Jason Gillespie

Phil Tufnell gears up for his Lawnmower race against Jason Gillespie

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