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PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2009 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Ashes. Well, it's on again! I admit I haven't been following the lead-up so I'll have to find out who's in and who's out as the day progresses.

But, an even start: England 120-3, session 2, day 1.

The Aussies have definitely come back to the field with the retirement of Warne and McGrath and Gilchrist. It should be interesting.

EDIT:

Stumps - day 2. Still even. England all out 435, and Australia 1-249.

Ricky Ponting 100 not out, and has passed 11,000 runs in test cricket, which makes him the 4th highest run scorer in test match history.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2009 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

England clung on to a draw thanks to some resistance by Collingwood and the tail enders, and a session of Welsh rain!

They were lucky, it will be interesting going to Lords....


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2009 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So the main questions I have now that the First Test is over: has Twenty20 honed the batsmen's skills to previously untrained level? Or turned Strike Bowlers into a protected breed? Or was the pitch just that boring?
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't call the pitch a batman's paradise - there was plenty of turn if there were any decent spinners to exploit it. But it was slow and it seemed to give the batsmen time to play comfortably.

The "strike" bowlers definitely seem to be lacking. Australia had no-one special, Hilfenhaus was probably the best IMO - Johnson was wayward. England had no-one special either - Flintoff was ineffective, Anderson was probably the pick.

But, Australia would have won given one more session (the one that was washed out) - so the batsmen didn't completely dominate. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 4:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agreed. Australia still seems to be suffering from post-Warne/McGrath blues, though. I think we're going to get far more draws this series than we have been used to in the past few Ashes series - especially if the batting standard of both teams stays at the high level displayed during this first test.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 2:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm, Lords looks flat and uninteresting - another batsman's paradise? Earthfriend, your 'draw' prediction is looking more likely as time goes by...
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 17, 2009 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know it's only Day 1, but I think you may be right, StevieG. Let's hope some cracks open, or the pitch starts to take reverse swing, or something to put a bit more fire in it!

BTW, what did everyone think about the accusations of 'slow play' the English have been coping concerning the last day of the previous test? Being an Australian, I didn't think the English did anything different from what we would've done, in a similar position. Chivalry in cricket, is all but a dead beast, unfortunately...
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 12:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Regarding the slow play accusations in the previous test, I personally don't like that sort of thing. I don't mind if a player stands his ground when there's a contentious decision (like if a player caught the ball before it hit the ground), but deliberate slowing of the game, changing gloves within a few overs, getting the physio out there when no-one was injured - it stinks!

Meanwhile, this has been a good game! One day to go and England are in the box seat. Australia have an outside chance of pulling off an unlikely victory...

~edit~

England go 1-0 up after winning at Lords. 10 day break now I think - now it's set up for a good series!
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

StevieG wrote:
Regarding the slow play accusations in the previous test, I personally don't like that sort of thing. I don't mind if a player stands his ground when there's a contentious decision (like if a player caught the ball before it hit the ground), but deliberate slowing of the game, changing gloves within a few overs, getting the physio out there when no-one was injured - it stinks!


I agree, it does stink. But I wonder if Australia would have behaved any different in the same situation. It's been a time since Gilchrist showed true sportsmanship, I wonder if that is lost to the game.

StevieG wrote:

England go 1-0 up after winning at Lords. 10 day break now I think - now it's set up for a good series!


Agreed. And well done to Flintoff and England. As an Australian cricket supporter, I thought we just didn't take the English seriously enough. Clarke and Haddin showed what all of the batsmen could have done. And England bowled and played well, bouyed by the timely announcement of Flintoff's retirement. Johnson's effort with the bat was good, also.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Earthfriend wrote:
I agree, it does stink. But I wonder if Australia would have behaved any different in the same situation. It's been a time since Gilchrist showed true sportsmanship, I wonder if that is lost to the game.


They would have been more subtle Wink - but probably would have done something to slow things down a bit. Ponting will always stand his ground (as opposed to Gilchrist), but I don't think he'd waste too much time. I actually think Flintoff is one of the fairest players out there - he was dismissed (maybe the 1st test), caught in the slips and asked Ponting if it carried, then walked when Ponting confirmed it. Pity he's just about to retire!

Earthfriend wrote:

Agreed. And well done to Flintoff and England. As an Australian cricket supporter, I thought we just didn't take the English seriously enough. Clarke and Haddin showed what all of the batsmen could have done. And England bowled and played well, bouyed by the timely announcement of Flintoff's retirement. Johnson's effort with the bat was good, also.


Australia were behind pretty much from day 2. Poor batting in the 1st innings. Johnson really needs to find something for the bowling attack. Maybe Stuart Clark should get a go in place of North? An extra bowler. They fought well, especially Clarke, Haddin and Johnson with the bat.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, of course you are right. No matter how many runs Johnson scored, that's not the main reason he's in the team, is it? Both he and the rest of the Australian attack must find a way to take wickets. Can't wait for the third test! (My holidays will have started by then, so the late nights shouldn't kill me so much, I hope, lol!)
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh yeah, the late nights! Thankfully it starts 8pm my time which is quite reasonable - but if it gets too exciting, the 3am finish hurts the next day!
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 1:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm getting twitchy - round 3 is almost on again! Kevin Pietersen out for England. I wonder if Shane Watson will get a game for the Aussies?

Earthfriend, being on holidays, I expect ball-by-ball coverage. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

O, I hear you StevieG! And now it looks like the media is upping it's pressure on Mitchell Johnson. (See Border's article in the Herald Sun today.)

I really hope Freddy is fit to play. Both England and the series need him, for mine
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Been watching the whole series so far, average England matched by an average Australia.

Pietersen out! Have no fear we have Ian Bell at 4th!... yea I'm not hopeful either, I would have called up Rob Key
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cricket.com.au wrote:
Recent rain has hampered the preparation of the wicket. Rain has fallen on 14 of the past 17 days in Birmingham.


Huh? Geez, I didn't think anywhere rained that much! Well, the start of the 3rd test has been delayed - how frustrating. And saturday is forecast heavy rain...
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 2:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is summer in England, right? Still at least we got some play, in the end, and Australia did well, for mine. Even Watson, though I am not a fan of his, I admit.

Ponting sounded very focused in pre-match interviews, very determined. Let's hope the rain doesn't totally ruin what could be a great clash.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 2:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I've never been a fan of Watson - he obviously has talent, but how many games does he play in a row before getting injured again? The selectors just keep sticking with him, whereas others who go well, Hughes, Hodge etc get booted after a couple of failures...

Having said that, he did do well yesterday. Razz
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 9:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think this match will end a draw because storm like weather is predicted for the weekend, hopefully it doesn't come and we get play though from what saw of the English bowling... maybe the weather would be a godsend lol
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 4:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heading into day 5, if there were to be a result, I'd say England would have it. Australia are just crap right now... We'll see!
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