Ashes coaches may enter sledging peace talks

Last updated 13:43 26/11/2013

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England coach Andy Flower says he'll consider meeting with Australian counterpart Darren Lehmann in a bid to set some sledging ground rules ahead of the second test in Adelaide.

Flower said the right balance needed to be found with on-field banter after details emerged of the vicious on-field exchange involving England's James Anderson and Australia's George Bailey and Michael Clarke.

It's been alleged No.11 batsman Anderson escalated that situation by threatening to punch Bailey in the face, prompting Clarke to respond with his, "get ready for a broken fing arm" comment which was picked up by a stump microphone and broadcast, ultimately costing the Australian skipper 20 per cent of his match fee.

Flower described David Warner as "disrespectful" and "ignorant" but said it would be inaccurate to links remarks made by the Australian batsman to the media about out-of-form Jonathan Trott's dismissals with the England batsman's return to England with a stress-related illness.

However Flower doesn't want Trott's sensitive departure to become a topic of conversation on the pitch in Adelaide and will consider speaking with Lehmann.

"Now you have brought it up (talking to Lehmann) I'll have a think about it," Flower told the British press on Monday.

"I think both sides must concentrate on playing the game of cricket on the pitch. In a competitive way but finding the right balance.

"I don't think (the Trott issue) should be raised on the pitch. We're there to play cricket.

"A balance has got to be found on the pitch between competitiveness and not overstepping the line."

Former England player and respected commentator David Lloyd has said some of the first test sledging he heard over a stump microphone, which didn't go to air, "went too far".

Flower said both sides had as responsibility to behave appropriately and he didn't wish to comment on the Clarke sledge to Anderson.

"That (Clarke sledge) situation has been dealt with by the ICC so I don't really need to go into it.

"We all have a responsibility both sides and the leaders involved to find the right balance and the way we play the game on the field.

"We're all adults out there."

Flower said he became aware of Trott's condition the very first time they met as player and coach in 2009.

Despite the fact Trott had headed home just one test into the five test series, Flower defended England's decision to pick him in the first place.

"He has handled it really well over the years and he has handled it well on the tour so far," Flower said.

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"Just as if someone had a hamstring issue leading into the first test it is our job to assess the likelihood of him being able to last the test or that hamstring not hampering his performance.

"In the same way with Trotty we believed that he would handle as he always has handled it, very successfully, and that was the decision we made."

Asked should Warner be forced to apologise or be punished for his press conference comment where he described England's "scared eyes" and Trott's dismissal as "weak", Flower said: "We set our own standards and the Australians must set theirs."

- AAP

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