Former Australian spin legend Shane Warne was extremely critical of England's tactics on the final day of the second Test against India at Lord's which the hosts lost by 151 runs, saying the bowlers were clueless on how to get tail-enders Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah out.
Thanks to Shami and Bumrah's 89-run unbroken partnership for the ninth wicket, England were set a 272-run target in a minimum of 60 overs, which the hosts could not achieve and lost by 151 runs on Monday.
"They're (England cricketers) standing there scratching their heads saying, 'what went wrong?' and what went wrong was horrific tactics," Warne told SEN. "They (England) had five, six, seven fielders on the fence. The bowler is standing at the top of his mark looking around saying, 'how am I going to get some of these guys out?'
"They got a bit too emotional, a bit too much short stuff and in the end the best team won, and that was India," said Warne.
England had made early inroads in the morning on Day 5, striking two quick blows and they were the favourites to win the Test. But curiously skipper Joe Root brought in pace bowler Mark Wood into the attack and set fielders deep on the boundary. Woods and the other pacers then peppered the tail-enders with bouncers, which proved counterproductive, said Warne.
The Bumrah-Shami pair withstood the short-ball onslaught and then changed the course of the match with an 89-run stand, ruining England's chances of a win.
Former England coach David Lloyd was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au that, "(England) just seemed intent on knocking lumps off (Bumrah) rather than getting him out... it looked as if England had lost the plot."
However, Root denied England had used the short stuff as revenge to Bumrah's barrage in both their innings.
"Fair play to Virat (Kohli) and his team. They jumped on to something that emotionally gave them an edge. I think a lot falls on my shoulders as captain." Tactically I could have done things slightly differently," said Root.
"The (Shami and Bumrah partnership) was the pivotal moment of the game, without question, and I don't think I dealt with that well enough tactically. It put us in a difficult position. Looking back, I'd look at some of the field placings and the way that we bowled. We could have looked at maybe attacking the stumps a little bit more frequently and using the short ball as more of a surprise.
"We have to give them some credit. They scored in unusual areas and made it hard to set conventional fields and (we) were trying to manage taking wickets but not letting the game get away from us. But I would have taken a little bit more time and probably brought more modes of dismissal into the game sooner."