England captain Joe Root has said England need to remain “mentally strong” after their “gut-wrenching” defeat in the third Test of the Ashes in Melbourne.
Australia dismissed the visitors for 68 on day three of the third Test to retain the Ashes at the earliest possible opportunity. The result means England have won only four Tests in Australia since the turn of the century - third last win on Australian soil come in Sydney in 2011.
"It is bitterly disappointing and gut-wrenching. We have been thoroughly outplayed," Root told BT Sport after the match.
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"We know we have underperformed and have to be mentally resilient and very strong.
We have to give the people back home something to enjoy and celebrate.
England have only won one of their last 12 Tests but this latest collapse was remarkable with Scott Boland finishing with figures of 6-7. Root top scored for England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground with 28, and Ben Stokes was the only other player to breach double figures with 11.
"We got ourselves into a position when we were in the match," Root told BBC's Test Match Special.
It's very frustrating - the way we bowled and went about that was excellent, the best we've been all tour.
"We know we have to be better. We can't hide behind any excuses, there are clear areas we need to work on and we've got two opportunities with the last two Test matches."
The next Test starts on 4 January in Sydney and Australia captain Pat Cummins was full of praise for his charges.
"I'm so proud of the group here,” said Cummins.
Everything's worked out. I'm happy for Scotty in front of his home crowd. What an incredible feeling.
"We've been relentless when we've had to be. The bowlers have bowled in a good area and the batters earned their runs. They've earned the right to bat long, they left well and they've all contributed. It's a great feeling."
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