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Off-Field Dramas Rocked Australian Team: Report

The fall out from Australia's demoralising Ashes campaign continues with reports of upheaval in the camp long before the embarrassing fourth Test defeat to England at Trent Bridge.

News Corp reports the tour had been dogged by off-field dramas with a long-running feud between the wives of two senior players; skipper Michael Clarke's refusal to travel on the team bus or socialise with teammates, the sacking of popular vice-captain Brad Haddin after time off for family reasons and the mishandling of selection announcements.

"But it is the year-long disintegration in the off-field relationship between Clarke and the rest of the team that cruelled any chance of success," the report said. "He often chooses to travel by private car instead of the team bus and rarely attends team get-togethers.

"On the night that he made his decision to step down, team members were stunned when he joined them for a rare drink in the hotel bar, although he ended the night drowning his sorrows with former teammate Shane Warne rather than any of the current side.

"While the divide between captain and team will not be an issue with incoming skipper Steven Smith, the question of whether wives, girlfriends and children should be allowed on tour will continue to be a minefield.

"It is known that the wives of two senior players do not get along, and that this has caused friction between their husbands, as has been the case with personality clashes between WAGS on previous tours."

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland earlier promised a review of the tour, following the series loss with one Test to go.

AAP

Photo: AAP

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