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Memorable Ashes Moments: 'We're gonna have a bowl' - Hussain's coin toss horror-show

Omnisport
NEWS
1.46K   //    16 Nov 2017, 02:45 IST
Hussaincointoss-Cropped
Nasser Hussain and Steve Waugh at the coin toss at the Gabba in 2002

As Australia and England prepare to battle it out once again for possession of the Ashes urn, we look back at the top moments from the last 10 series.

Our run down continues with the 2002-03 series, in which then England captain Nasser Hussain uttered five of the most ill-advised words in Ashes history.

 

November 7, 2003: First Test, the Gabba

Any optimism England had going into the 2002-03 Ashes was shattered on the first morning of the opening Test in Brisbane.

It all started so well, as the toss went in captain Nasser Hussain's favour, but it was all downhill from there.

A conversation with Marcus Trescothick about the Gabba pitch led Hussain to infamously utter "we're gonna have a bowl".

But shortly into Australia's innings, it became apparent to everyone, including Hussain, that he made an ill-advised decision.

Hussain told The Observer in 2006: "The ball swung a bit at first and I thought: 'Maybe this is going to work out.' But by the fifth or sixth over nothing was happening and the world was closing in on me. 

"I thought to myself: 'Oh God, Nass, what have you done?'"

What he had done was allow Australia to set the tone for another crushing series victory.

Matthew Hayden (197) and Ricky Ponting (123) combined brilliantly to put Australia in complete command as they each scored centuries on an extremely trying day for England's attack.

To compound Hussain's misery, the one man to have success against the top of the Australia order, Simon Jones - having taken the wicket of Justin Langer - ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament while fielding during the morning session.

England's luck was out, and so was their form. Australia were eventually bowled out for 492 and the tourists fell 167 runs short of that tally in response before being skittled for 79 in the second innings as they slumped to a 384-run loss.

"I wouldn't say that it's uncommon for a team to win the toss and bowl first at Brisbane," Langer told The Observer. "[Australia captain] Steve Waugh was thinking about putting them in. 

"The point is that you've got to make it count, you've got to take wickets early on, and England didn't do that."

England never recovered from their Gabba humbling, losing the series 4-1, and, when they did finally atone for years of emphatic defeats, Hussain's time had gone, with that coin toss unfortunately perhaps the abiding memory of his captaincy.

Omnisport
NEWS
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