Ashes 2013-14: England futures all under scrutiny, admits Graham Gooch

• 'Everyone has to look at themselves,' says batting coach
Gooch's position in danger after first-innings collapse

With the prospect of an Ashes whitewash looming ever closer there was at least a sense of well-grooved familiarity about the spectacle of yet another helter-skelter England batting collapse on the second day of the fifth Test in Sydney.

Having crumpled to 23-5 in the morning session England finished the day 311 runs behind Australia, who were coasting on 140-4 at the close. As an unrelentingly wretched series draws towards its close it seems almost certain any post-Ashes restructuring of team and management will now take place in the context of a humiliating 5-0 defeat. "Everyone has to look at themselves," the batting coach, Graham Gooch said after close of play in Sydney. "The coaches, the players; we're all going to be under scrutiny. The brutal truth is it's not been good enough. We have to look for ways to improve and that might entail taking some more pain before it gets better. Obviously there will be a rebuilding process."

"Our players have not met the challenge with the bat. We've not competed as we'd have liked to and not shown the skills that have been necessary. Good Test players generally get out lbw, caught behind, caught slip, but we've gifted too many wickets."

With the England head coach, Andy Flower, unlikely to find his position challenged by the incoming ECB managing director Paul Downton – and receiving support from chief executive David Collier on Saturday – England's batting coach could yet find himself the lone managerial casualty not just of this Ashes tour, but of England's current run of 25 innings without posting a total of 400 or more.

"That's not a decision for me," Gooch said. "We all have to look at ourselves and our methods. Personally, I have total belief in the messages I give to the players but we'll have to look at it and see whether there's a better way, or the powers that be will definitely be reviewing everyone after this series, as they do, and quite rightly. So we'll all be under scrutiny."

It is a review that will no doubt take in the position of Alastair Cook as Test Match captain after a series when England's tactics have been questioned and even ridiculed at times by senior ex-players. Cook was out in the first over on day two in Sydney offering no stroke to a straight ball from Ryan Harris. It was a horrible dismissal, but Gooch remains loyal to his Essex protege.

"Ultimately, the individual is the only one who can make that decision but for me, he's still a guy who's learning and he's still the guy who should be there when some sort of rebuilding takes place." © 2014 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

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