Dec 5, 2006

Ashes - It's all over!

The Ashes series, underway right now, has sure turned out to be a disappointment. England, who did not really look very convincing in the lead up to the series, have basically folded. The 2nd Test looked great for the 1st 4 days, and it looked like this was the turning point in this incarnation of the series (much like the previous one).

But the morning of the 5th showed that this England team really does not have the level of skill or audacity that is required to effectively take on Australia in a Test match series. It was quite ridiculous, the defensive tactics being employed by England on the 5th day. They should have, and I believe the Vaughn England would have, come out agressive on the 5th day and tried to put some quick runs on the board, and then put Australia in to have a go at them.

Defenders of England will say that the aggressive tactics were not really an option once they lost a couple wickets. Bah humbug, I say. England went into a shell that was ridiculous. They just helped the Aussie cause by building up more pressure on themselves, and letting the Aussies have the run of the field. The coach and captain surely must be faulted for this ridiculous tactic. [India have been guilty of this tactic before, and even great batsmen like Dravid have fallen into this totally defensive mode, and the results have been the same - A big win for the other team, usually Australia]. The Australians showed everyone, and England had the best view of this, during this very Test how some aggression works to relieve the pressure. They were facing 550+ runs, and were 65 for 3 (or thereabouts), and they came after the England bowling - Ponting, Hussey, Clarke and then finally Gilchrist. England should have learned some lessons...but, alas!

Now all that is left of this series, is to see if Warne gets to 700, Ponting gets to the record that Yousuf just broke (after that having stood for 30 years), Brett Lee gets his groove back, and if Andrew Flintoff can survive the whole series without ruining his ankle and his career as a bowler.

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