The rivalry between England and Australia in the Lord's Test match may have concluded on the field on Sunday, but it persists in the media outlets of both nations. Following Monday's newspapers in the UK, which criticized the Australian team for the contentious dismissal of Jonny Bairstow, the Australian media retaliated on Tuesday morning by labeling Ben Stokes and his team as 'crybabies.' When Stokes noticed one of the newspaper front pages gaining popularity on social media, he couldn't resist making a witty comeback.
The West Australian posted a picture of Stokes in nappies, with 'Crybabies' written in big letters in the centre. "Poms take whingeing to new level with 'cheating' drivel" read another line from the paper.
Reacting to the post, Stokes wrote: "That's definitely not me, since when did I bowl with the new ball".
Stokes claims he wouldn't do the same
In response to the contentious dismissal of Jonny Bairstow, Stokes expressed his reluctance to win a game in such a manner. However, the England captain acknowledged that the events on the field were entirely within the rules of the game.
"If the shoe was on the other foot I would have put more pressure on the umpires and asked whether they had called over and had a deep think about the whole spirit of the game. Would I want to win a game in that manner? The answer for me is no," he had said on Sunday.
In contrast, Australian captain Pat Cummins believes that Alex Carey acted appropriately, particularly considering that Jonny Bairstow had previously been involved in similar dismissals.
"You see Jonny do it all the time. He did it on day one to Davey Warner. He did it in 2019 to Steve [Smith]. It's a really common thing for keepers to do if they see about a batter keep leaving their crease. So Kez [Carey], full credit to him. He saw the opportunity. I think Jonny did it a few balls beforehand. Rolled it at the stumps. Jonny left his crease. You leave the rest to the umpires," Cummins had said in the press conference after the match.
As England finds themselves behind 0-2 in their home series against Australia, they are rapidly running out of time to demonstrate that 'Bazball' is indeed the correct approach for them moving forward.