The Cricketer
The Cricketer The Cricketer


Fast bowler will get used to taking hits to the body this winter

Compared to a 90mph Mitchell Starc bumper it can only have stung a little, but England bowler Stuart Broad still sported some fine-looking war wounds after an England paintballing session in Queensland.

The tourists enjoyed an afternoon off in Townsville by strapping on camouflage and peppering each other with paint-filled pellets at a local range, with Broad appearing to come off worse than most.

The Nottinghamshire seamer posted a picture to his Instagram account on Tuesday showing a considerable bruise on his right arm, seemingly the result of a particularly accurate shot from a team-mate.

And, in training with the rest of the squad later in the day, the veteran paceman also sported a humdinger on his left thigh.

Still, Broad will have suffered much worse during his cricketing career.

Stuart Broad takes part in training with battle scars on his left thigh and right arm

Jonny Bairstow takes part in the session (Picture: Adrenalin Plus Paintball Townsville)

England players including Moeen Ali and Tom Curran (Picture: Adrenalin Plus Paintball Townsville)

The Ashes is now just nine days away and the mind games are well and truly under way, with words exchanged between both camps.

England captain Joe Root, however, is ready for the talking to stop and the action to start.

“From our point of view, we’ll be targeting every single one of them – we won’t be singling any one out," he said.

"To win a Test you’ve got to take 20 wickets. But you want that competitive element to it. And those little in-house rivalries.

“It should be a great series. They’ve got some great players within their squad. And good characters, as well, which, I’m sure will make for great viewing.

“I try not to do too much talking. That’s more for them to worry about. The more you say the more it can backfire on you. We will go about things our way.

“There’s been a lot of talk. Some of it exciting and some of it a load of rubbish. Especially from some of the Aussie players.”

MORE FROM THE CRICKETER: Ellyse Perry - the perfect spokesperson for women's sport