Bayliss voices concern about substandard preparation

Trevor Bayliss has called on CA and the ECB to “get together” to ensure a better standard of preparation for both teams on Ashes tours.
Bayliss, the England coach, has stated several times that he would have preferred England to encounter stiffer opposition ahead of the first Test but has been at pains to point out that the situation is not so different for Australia when they visit the UK.
As a result, Bayliss has already spoken to Andrew Strauss – the director of England cricket – to suggest that first-class matches against an A team (effectively the national second XI) are written into future Ashes schedules ahead of the first Test, adding that he will speak to Pat Howard (Strauss’s counterpart in Australia) about the matter in the coming days.
“Both Australia and England should be getting together and having at least one match against the A team before each series,” Bayliss said. “I’ve already mentioned it to Strauss and I will mention it to Pat Howard when I see him too.
There was a certain irony in the timing of Bayliss’ words. While the CA XI that England played in Townsville contained just one man with a first-class century to his name prior to the match – Nick Larkin – by the time it ended, two more young Australian batsmen had maiden first-class hundreds. And as England laboured throughout the final day in taking just one wicket, it became harder to sustain the argument that the opposition was as modest as had first appeared.In truth, though, that was partially the result of an unusually slow, flat wicket which is unlikely to be replicated during the Ashes series. And while the England camp are reluctant to make any public complaint about the preparation they have been provided by CA, there is a sense that both the surfaces and the opposition to this point have left them facing a major change of quality – and specifically pace – when they arrive at the Gabba.
Underlining that suspicion – or, depending on your view, paranoia – is the training schedule ahead of the first Test on Thursday. England will train in the afternoon on Tuesday and Wednesday – often teams alternate between morning and afternoon sessions on consecutive days – giving them slightly less time to rest and slightly less exposure to conditions throughout the day.
“That was a bone of contention,” Bayliss said. “The home team makes the programme and that’s just the way it is. We will take it on the chin and get on with it.”