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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

'Rumbled in the Jungle,' Woeful England Blasted

LONDON -- England's humiliating loss to Zimbabwe in a one-day international has prompted some of the English media to question the club's "moral'' right to play test matches abroad.


The latest blow came Sunday in Zimbabwe's two-wicket win over England -- England's third loss in four limited-overs matches played during the Zimbabwe tour.


The first of two full tests against Zimbabwe begins Wednesday with another defeat looming and English newspapers ripping into the side and captain Mike Atherton.


The Daily Mirror, under a headline "Stuffed,'' showed Atherton's head attached to the body of a turkey.


The Independent suggested the unthinkable for the country that invented cricket. "If they [England] continue to bat as poorly as this, they will lose the tests as well, risking unprecedented ridicule and their moral right to play test matches abroad.''


The story of the defeat topped most of the national sports pages Monday and crept over to a few front pages. But the team's woeful performance is getting to be old news.


"Every time we think England have bottomed out, they produce yet another gem of incompetence,'' The Daily Telegraph said.


The Guardian, almost resigned to the loss, offered this: "An England defeat no longer makes you burn inside with bitterness, sarcasm or anger, but just invites a feeling of depression.''


The tabloid The Sun probably minced the fewest words under a headline "Rumbled in the Jungle.'' The newspaper pointed out that Zimbabwe has only 10 professional cricketers and few serious players. "Embarrassment is a word which clings to the England cricket team like a leech,'' the paper said.