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The Ashes - 2013/14

PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 9:19 pm
by katarn
It's that time again where England and Australia prepare to battle it out over five test matches. England start their first warm-up match tomorrow against WA.

Having won in 2009 England are the current holders, but have a much trickier prospect on the dry, hard pitches down under.

Consensus seems to be no likely winner can be predicted early on; England's pace attack are considered better than Australia's in general, but are more suited to swinging wickets and unproven with the kookaburra ball. Swann will need to be dominant to drive England's chances.

Out batsmen are still very inconsistent, but Australia are not without their own problems.

Ponting isn't quite the player he was, Clarke & Hussey are struggling in their careers right now and they're generally considered to be on the downward slide. Their bowlers are also uninspiring.


But...personally I think they'll win the series. England are simply too average away from home and Australia know how to play attritional test cricket in their own back yard, regardless of their decline in recent years. I still believe they have a toughness England don't possess.

England certainly have a much better chance than 06/07, and it will be a closer series, but I'm going for 2-1 to the Aussies. Of course, I'd love England to prove me wrong. :wink:

PostPosted: Thu Nov 04, 2010 10:07 pm
by NightShade
I think a lot rests on these warm up matches. Normally they mean little other than to get players used to the conditions. With Australia on the back of a massive (for them) losing streak it'll give England a considerable advantage if they do well in them and Australia continue to lose. It's far to close to call though, we have the clear bowling advantage and them the clear batting advantage. I think matches will be decided by either an English batsman hitting a great score or an Australian bowler having a cracking spell. Too little between the teams as it stands.

PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 12:37 pm
by katarn
Solid start for England in the warm up match. Strauss got some runs, along with Pietersen and a few others. Broad and Swann getting a few wickets each.

I think England have made the right choice giving themselves a month to prepare in Australia, instead of just going there a week or two beforehand.

Also: ... highlights
ITV understood to be close to a deal that would mark the broadcaster's first foray into Test cricket coverage

Yaaay! I don't have Sky Sports, so would be nice to have a terrestrial highlights show. Hope they sort it all out.

PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:40 pm
by DjchunKfunK
katarn wrote:Yaaay! I don't have Sky Sports, so would be nice to have a terrestrial highlights show. Hope they sort it all out.

We have done for the last few years via Channel 5.

PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:42 pm
by katarn
Channel 5 declined the rights this series. As did the BBC.

Pretty sure the BBC did them in 06/07.

PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:47 pm
by DjchunKfunK
Ahh ok, didn't realise that.

PostPosted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:20 pm
by katarn
Another solid-ish day for England, this time against Southern Aus - Colly got 94 off around 100 balls. Pretty average scores from everyone else. Still feeling their way in.

Ian Chappell's views on Cook (I always like hearing his views, he often gives a neutral appraisal of both sides' failings - unlike most other Australian commentators): ... 179833.stm
He has got a lot of flaws in his technique and they are going to be exacerbated under Australian conditions.

PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2010 11:29 pm
by katarn
Yay. \o/

ITV highlights coverage confirmed. ... ights-itv4

It'll be post-10pm every night on ITV4 - Freeview.

PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 12:30 am
by Adam
Looking forward to this, in part because we've got our best chance of an away Ashes win in years. And until I get employed it'll be a good way to pass the days. -_-

PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:52 am
by katarn
Looking at the time difference, the typical hours of play will be 12am to 7am so I probably would have only ever watched the opening couple of hours anyway - even if I did have Sky Sports.

So highlights are good, as long as ITV give each program a full hour - Channel 5 only ever had a 45min programme, with 2 long advert breaks and not enough action/too much Simon Hughes analysis. Always felt a bit short-changed.

Hopefully ITV will set aside a longer program due to the late time slot and pack it full of action.


Bell got a great 192 today in the match against Aus A, with Bresnan getting all 3 wickets in the second innings so far. There's no doubt Morgan is now firmly behind Bell in the pecking order.

PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 2:16 pm
by NightShade
The last couple of scores for each Aussie start/potential starter:

Watson (6, 15)
Katich (1, 36)
Ponting (7, 27)
Hussey (0, 118)
Ferguson (7, 10)
Khawaja (13, 0)
North (17, 23*)
Hughes (2, 58*)
Smith (59)
Haddin (10, 17)

Compare that to the scores of pretty much any England batsman since the start of this tour and it makes for optimistic reading. I think Bell is going to have a massive series. He is an amazing player technically wise, he's just never had the mental toughness, he's really changed these days.

Their bowling is looking a bit more in form than their batting, but still don't think they have a patch on us. No matter what spinner these choose Swann will shit all over them. Anderson will be crucial for the first 25 overs when the ball is still swinging, if it wasn't for the fact that he's so lethal in those overs I'd be worried about him once it does stop. Broad is Broad and I think the pitches will suit his line and length by offering extra pace and bounce making him more dangerous than normal. Finn is undoubtedly a weak link though, a vast amount of potential but completely untested and I think he'll be the bowler the Aussies put to the sword.

PostPosted: Fri Nov 19, 2010 2:44 pm
by katarn
Anybody else following Swann's video diaries? They're pretty good. :)

PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2010 6:16 pm
by NightShade
Less than 6 hours now. Actually getting proper excited now :D

PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2010 6:25 pm
by katarn
Aye, the waiting is over at last. Just a shame about the time difference - I'll probably only follow the opening hour or so. I'll wake up in the morning with trepidation as I check the red button scorecard...

Forecast for next 5 days in Brisbane is quite showery/overcast, so it could hopefully benefit our quicks - although it'll hugely benefit Hilfenhaus as well...

PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2010 11:34 pm
by katarn
Ooooh. England win the toss and bat first.

It seems the wicket is okay for batting and not as green as they thought it would be.

Let battle commence.