Changes loom after pace stalwarts James Anderson and Stuart Broad were rested for the Gabba, a ploy that backfired as spinner Jack Leach was hit out of the attack and back-up seamers Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes were largely ineffective.
Fixing England’s batting in four days ahead of a second Australian pace onslaught is another task altogether, with captain Joe Root again left wanting for support in Brisbane.
Root’s decision to bat first on a grassy wicket after winning the toss in muggy, overcast weather did his batsmen few favours after they were left with virtually no practice due to poor weather.
Being skittled for 147 in the first innings was evidence of a lack of preparation for the Gabba’s bounce.
“Managing the bounce on this wicket is something that we didn’t do well enough,” said Root.
“We nicked balls not because of lateral movements on occasions but because of extra bounce, playing slightly away from ourselves. Whereas, in our own conditions we don’t face that.”
England’s opening combination remains a worry, with Rory Burns bowled for a duck with the first ball of the series and managing 13 in the second innings.
His opening partner, Haseeb Hameed, squandered both his starts to be dismissed in the 20s, putting pressure on Root to carry the side’s batting, a role he has been saddled with throughout the year.
The fitness of Ben Stokes is under the microscope after he went wicketless for the match and failed with the bat after a knee strain on day two.
England will not head to Adelaide bereft of positives, though, with pacemen Ollie Robinson and Mark Wood bowling with vigour and menace in Brisbane.
Selectors will likely drop Leach for Adelaide after he leaked nearly eight runs an over at the Gabba.
They may hope Anderson and Broad can prove the difference with the swinging pink ball but even their return may not be enough to stop a team that have won all eight of their day-night Tests since the format’s debut in 2015.
Australia’s record after winning Ashes Tests in Brisbane may also deflate optimistic England fans. The last time the hosts lost an Ashes after winning in Brisbane was the 1954/55 series.