London - Stuart Broad on Monday revealed that England captain Alastair Cook
has urged his side to pile on the misery for beleaguered Australia in the final
Ashes Test this week.
Cook's men wrapped up the Ashes with a victory in the fourth Test that put
them 3-1 up in the five-match series.
But, ahead of the start of the finale at The Oval on Thursday, England pace
bowler Broad said Cook called every England player last Tuesday in a bid to
cement the "burning desire" to complete a 4-1 rout of Australia.
Securing England's biggest Ashes series margin of victory since Mike
Brearley led them to a 5-1 success in 1978-79 would be the perfect way to
avenge their 5-0 loss down under in 2013-14.
"Cooky called us all on Tuesday, to say: 'Let's make sure we turn up
knowing that we're in a battle and that we want to start again, Because I've
got a burning desire for this to be 4-1'," Broad said.
"Certainly those of us involved in that 5-0 loss (in 2013-14) feel that
determination to make this a good week.
"Australia are ruthless when they get on top. We want that same tag. No
one wants us to be an enjoyable team to play against, and we want to hammer
"I was not surprised that he called because he has been so switched on
for the past eight months.
"We were in the middle of our little week off and he was sat on his
farm thinking about it, wanting to make sure everyone was on the money."
- Influence -
Cook this week said he considered quitting as skipper during the first Test
against the West Indies in April, shortly after being replaced as captain of
the one-day side.
But he was persuaded to stay and has reaped the rewards during a memorable
Broad was quick to salute Cook's influence and especially his ability to end
the divide between past and present England players.
He believes Cook has bridged the gap that had prohibited ex-England stars
handing out hints and tips to the current generation.
Broad, whose eight for 15 was the stand-out performance of the Ashes-clinching
Nottingham Test, says he had rarely spoken to the likes of Ian Botham during
his England career until Cook found a way to get the old guard involved.
"He (Cook) admitted after Trent Bridge that his stubbornness sometimes
got the better of him," Broad said.
"He has been talking a lot more to ex-players about captaincy and
learning from people.
"I think we went through a period as a team when we wouldn't speak to
any of our ex-players and it was like us versus them.
"This new open theory, started by (former coach Peter) 'Moores' and
with (director Andrew) Strauss carrying it on, has helped.
"Go to (Michael) Vaughan in the morning and say 'What do you reckon
here?' He tells you - and that can set your mind at rest.
"And the way Beefy has been coming over and encouraging people - I'd
played for six or seven years and never really spoken to Beefy.
"Now he is coming over to the team and going, 'Come on, boys, let's get
this done today.' That gives you a huge lift."