Australia restricted England to 197-all-out as they went 2-1 up in the five match Test series and retained the Ashes urn by winning the fourth Test at Old Trafford in Manchester by 185 runs on Sunday (8 September).
After a dramatic win for the Aussies, the celebrations began on the ground and at one stage, Australia’s star batsman Steve Smith was seen wearing and rubbing a pair of glasses before shadow batting left-handed in the middle of a team huddle.
After seeing this, fans and some cricket pundits came to the conclusion that the 30-year-old right-hand batsman was unkindly parodying the glasses-wearing Leach.
The 28-year-old left-arm off spinner had helped England teammate Ben Stokes snatch a remarkable win in the third Test with a 76-run unbroken partnership, during which the spinner scored just one run at Headingley.
When asked about this incident, the Australia coach Justin Langer said, “Experience tells me that when you’re doing well, people will try and pick holes in you. I know the truth. Chris Rogers is a great mate of the squad, that’s all it’s about. People can make up what they like about it, but that’s the truth.”
England coach Trevor Bayliss also commented on this controversy by saying, “Fake news, like Donald Trump says. No one has mentioned it or spoken about it. It’s all talk from you guys (the media).”
After this match, if Australia avoid losing the fifth Test at The Oval in London beginning from 12 September, it will be the first series win for Australia in England after 2001 and Joe Root will become the first English skipper after Michael Atherton to lose a home series to Aussies.
(With AFP inputs)