Ashes 2013/14: Andy Flower and Alastair Cook have plenty more to give England
But introduction of fresher players would make their jobs easier..
Last Updated: 04/01/14 10:40am
The tourists, 4-0 down, are staring at an Ashes whitewash after closing day two of the fifth Test 311 runs behind Australia after being bowled out for 155 in their first innings in Sydney.
England and Wales Cricket Board chief executive David Collier has given his backing to both Flower and Cook, who have both expressed their desire to stay on.
Botham told Sky Sports News that, given fresh talent, the duo are capable of turning the team's fortunes around.
"Andy Flower is a strong person, Alastair Cook is still learning his job as a captain," said the former England all-rounder. "Maybe fresher faces, guys coming in without any baggage, might make their job a little easier.
"Certainly when Ben Stokes walked out there you wouldn't have thought that there was anything wrong. He was just out doing what he wants to do - playing cricket.
"There were no bad memories and he created his own good ones with a hundred in Perth and six wickets here. Again, he batted and bowled well today.
"So there are some good things to come out of this tour but not much and England have got a lot of work to do - now and in the future.
"The highest score to win a match here is 288 - that was in Ricky Ponting's 100th Test, a little while ago now, so England have it all to do."
England's series capitulation looked complete at 23-5 as Alastair Cook, Kevin Pietersen and Ian Bell all fell for single figures before Ben Stokes (47) led a partial recovery.
Botham said Australia's seam attack of Ryan Harris (3-36), Mitchell Johnson (3-33) and Peter Siddle (3-23) should take plaudits for bowling the tourists out for under 200 for the fifth time in the series.
"I think the whole England team have been knocked for six," he said. "At the end of the day Australia have smothered them and they're getting everything they deserve, because they've out-performed England in just about every department.
"With the exception of Ben Stokes and the wickets of Stuart Broad, there hasn't been a great deal for the supporters or players to shout about. It has been really tough. But give credit where it is due. Australia have never allowed England to get back into this series, from day one.
"Guys don't go out there and deliberately get out. At times we've got to give a bit of credit to the Australian bowlers - Ryan Harris and Mitchell Johnson, with Peter Siddle supporting. They've all turned up and they've all bowled well. I can't think of any one of them having a bad day in this series.
"Because they've bowled so well and their batsmen have scored runs, they've been able to have long rests in between each bowling period. They've done everything to England that we were planning to do to them.
"So England have got a lot of time now to re-think. Andy Flower says he wants to stay and reshape this England side. It needs some reshaping but there are some youngsters coming through. Stokes is the star one."
With England's struggles continuing on the pitch, Botham found enjoyment elsewhere as fellow Sky Sports commentator Nasser Hussain was despatched to the nearby towering KFC crane bar.
Former England captain Hussain was also given a splendid pink suit to wear on day three, when spectators and commentators alike are encouraged to wear pink in support of the charitable McGrath Foundation.
"We did have a bit of fun today - we sent Nasser on a lovely mission all of the way to the top of the tower just outside the ground. I enjoyed every minute of it," joked Botham.
"He had to sit on a chair way up in the air with nothing behind him - he didn't look very happy. But that's not all.
"Wait until you see the lovely suit that we've acquired for him on Jane McGrath Day. Let's put it this way: he'll wear it in the ground but he won't be seen alive in it in Sydney."
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Watch highlights of today's play from 9am on Sky Sports 3 and On Demand from 6.30pm. The Ashes Verdict is back at 9pm on Sky Sports 2 ahead of The Ashes Extra at 10.30pm, with live coverage of D3 from 11pm.