James Anderson confirmed that Michael Clarke rejected an invitation by Alastair Cook for the tourists to join the hosts for a beer following their 169-run defeat inside four days at Cardiff.
Anderson said that England and New Zealand had shared drinks after both of their Tests this European summer and Cook was eager to reach out to Australia in the same way. But the captain’s invitation was declined was rebuffed, with Anderson in the dark as to why, ahead of the Lord’s Test which starts on Thursday.
Speaking at the launch of a documentary charting the progress of a cricket team of Maasai warriors, called Warriors, England’s Anderson said, “That’s their prerogative. In the New Zealand series, we had a beer after each game with them. We found that was quite an enjoyable thing, just to chew the fat after a hard Test. It didn’t matter whether we won or lost.
“At Headingley (where England lost to draw the series), we still went into their dressing room and had a beer with them. It’s Cooky’s idea. He went and asked them. We were all happy to do it. I don’t know why they didn’t come in.”
England and Australia shared a beer after each Ashes Test in the 2005 series, widely regarded as the greatest. But such camaraderie was cited by the captain of the tourists, Ricky Ponting, as one of the reasons they lost. Since then, drinks have traditionally been at the end of a series, with Clarke saying before this campaign began that he did not think that would change.
On Saturday England won the first Test at Cardiff by 169 runs.
Anderson said England and New Zealand had shared drinks, regardless of results, following both matches in their drawn 1-1 Test series in England earlier this season.
England captain Alastair Cook invited Australian counterpart Michael Clarke and his side into the home dressing room after England’s emphatic fourth day win but was rebuffed.
Having a drink with your opponents after the end of a match has been a part of all levels of cricket, and especially Australian cricket, for generations.
Indeed during the 2005 Ashes series, widely regarded as one of cricket’s greatest contests, the teams split a beer after each match.
However, then Australia captain Ricky Ponting, said afterwards that what he felt was an excessively friendly atmosphere contributed to his side’s defeat.
In recent years in Test cricket, the practice has been for teams to share a drink at the end of a series but not before.