Ex-England star Matthew Hoggard says this Ashes tour would be "worst nightmare"

Former England bowler Matthew Hoggard has said that living in a bio-bubble for the Ashes would be his "worst nightmare".

Hoggard toured Australia for the 2006/07 Ashes series and was England's leading wicket-taker, picking up 13 scalps despite missing the final Test through injury.

This winter's Ashes series has been in doubt due to Australia's strict coronavirus protocol, with some players concerned about the conditions of the tour.

The Ashes does look set to go ahead following months of discussions between the ECB and Cricket Australia.

Players are now set to enjoy a softer quarantine in a resort in the Yarra Valley region in Victoria, with the length of time set to be reduced from 14 days to seven as vaccine rates improve throughout the state.

However, Hoggard understands why some players are reluctant to go to Australia, telling the Daily Mail : "I am in no position to comment about how players are feeling in lockdown because I haven't been in a bio-bubble.

"But to be locked up 24-7 with the same people daily, it would do my nut in, to be honest. It'd be my worst nightmare."

When asked about his own experiences of overseas tours with England, Hoggard added: " 'There were times when I wanted my own company, so I would stay in my hotel room and take my imaginary dog for a walk in the fields back home – because I'd had enough of the people I was with.

"If you can't get away from the 18-24 you are on tour with – see them for breakfast, lunch and tea, then go to training with them – no matter how much you like them, it's going to grate.

"So I can understand why players would be reluctant to spend three to four months in the same hotels, locked away, not allowed to go out and be normal.

"Then throw in the family situation – young kids, having to isolate. Even in a nice suite, if you have two or three children and are not able to go out for several days: aaarrgghh.

"That would be hard work. So I understand why some players might not want to go. No wonder they're apprehensive."

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