Cricket Expert & Columnist
Ashes 2013/14: England must bat positively in second innings in Melbourne
Broad just one of several England players who must find way to deal with Johnson...
Last Updated: 27/12/13 11:53am
Left-armer Johnson trapped Broad lbw for 11 with a quick yorker on day two of the fourth Ashes Test as England faltered to 255 in their first innings.
The dismissal was a near replica of Broad's downfall in the third Test in Perth which left the all-rounder needing treatment on a bruised foot.
The Nottinghamshire seamer responded in style by taking 3-30 as Australia limped to 164-9 before stumps but Hussain told the Sky Sports Ashes Podcast that Broad's batting form remains a worry.
"He has always been a little bit hit and miss," said Hussain of Broad, who is averaging just under 14 with the bat in this series in comparison to his career standard of 24.
"There are some days where he looks a genuine tail-ender and others where he looks like a batsman.
"The great 169 he got against Pakistan at Lord's [in 2010] was a wonderful innings and he has scored useful runs against some useful attacks.
"I think he'll always be that type of batsman but I'm afraid that Mitchell Johnson has got him sorted at the moment because he's such a tall lad that he's hanging back; he's adopting a slightly new stance, lower down, but Mitchell Johnson is just taking length out of the equation.
"He's bowling either at Broad's head or his foot and, to be honest, Broad is not liking it. Mitchell Johnson does stir things up and get the ticker going a little bit."
Broad is by no means the only Englishman to falter against Johnson's 90mph-plus pace. The seamer's first-innings figures of 5-63 mean that he has now taken an impressive 28 English scalps at just under 15 runs apiece.
However, Hussain says the tourists must still endeavour to bat positively in their second innings and shouldn't be afraid to do so on a placid pitch.
"There is not a lot in the pitch, really," he said. "If anything the batsmen on both sides have to take a look at themselves. It looked like tired batting, almost punch-drunk from nine Ashes Tests against each other.
"There are no demons in the pitch and second time around England have got to look at that and say 'we must bat positively'.
"Every batsman has struggled to find any kind of timing with Brad Haddin, who has taken the aerial route, probably being the exception.
"Sometimes you get that at the MCG, plus there's the spongy outfield which means the ball goes nowhere.
"England's bowlers were very disciplined; they bowled as they have done historically when they've dried sides up. That's the difference; when you are behind the game slightly, as Australia were today at times they couldn't just tee off and England kept control very well."
England were criticised in some quarters for scoring at only 2.55 runs an over in their first innings but Australia's runs have so far come at an even slower rate of 2.23. But Hussain says that doesn't make the contest any less fascinating.
"You have to be a real connoisseur of the game and love the long form [to enjoy this]," he reflected. "Yesterday the crowd had to wait a long time for any kind of action.
"But when you have got Mitchell Johnson in the opposition, steaming in as he did last night and this morning, it's worth waiting for.
"England have got a different type of attack; they haven't got Mitchell Johnson but they do have pitch-it-up bowlers who can nibble it away.
"It was nice to see Anderson come back from a little bit of a lack of form over the last few months and the moment there is any sideways movement, he will always find something."
He added: "You do have to be in it for the long-term in Test match cricket. One-day cricket and some of the cricket we saw at the WACA when the ball is flying through is immediate entertainment. Here it's a little bit slower but still just as fascinating."
Alternatively, listen on Soundcloud...
Watch highlights of today's play from 4pm, then join us for The Ashes Verdict from 9pm, The Ashes Extra at 10.30pm and coverage of day three from 11pm - all on Sky Sports 2.