Ashes 2009


Thank the lord that Prior was dropped off the last ball of the day, otherwise Ponting might have claimed the extra time and possibly ended the test inside 2 days. To be fair, I don’t think the end can come soon enough for England. We have been woeful in every area this test. Poor batting, poor bowling, poor fielding and – dare I say it – poor captaincy. The bowlers have been abominable, which has forced Strauss to set fields for bad bowling, but he shouldn’t be doing that.

England’s top order has looked inadequate all series, and this test has ruthlessly exposed its weaknesses. We are too relient on Strauss and Pietersen. Take one out through injury and the other has a poor test, then we are in trouble. Cook showed promise during this match, which is far better than the previous tests, but he didn’t make it count. Bopara has been made to look very poor by the Aussie bowlers. Ian Bell, well, he has been Ian Bell-like. The Aussies seems to have Paul Collingwood’s measure. Strauss aside, Prior is looking like England’s best batsman, and he hasn’t delivered big yet.

England are too reliant on four players – Strauss, Pietersen, Flintoff and Anderson. Take two out due to injury, and the other two have poor matches, and – to be honest – England look like a club side.

England will lose this match in a hurry tomorrow morning, leaving enough time for England to have a serious think ahead of the fifth, final and deciding test at The Oval. England are short on form and class in the batting department, and while I wouldn’t usually demand changes, the nature of this performance needs fresh faces to reinvigorate a damaged side. These are desperate times, I wonder what Rob Key and Mark Ramprakash are doing?

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No, but it feels a bit like it. 72-6 at lunch, oh dear.

The piss poorest of piss poor Ashes news stories has developed to the extent that even BBC news is covering. This is bad, because it is a horrendously piss poor story that doesn’t deserve the time, space or thought wasted on it, and I’ve now fallen for it too.

Giles Clarke asked people to stop booing Ricky Ponting. Why? It doesn’t bother Ponting, and according to BBC radio it doesn’t bother Shane Watson either, and he is scared of the dark. Ponting, I would argue, does have “the respect and courtesy” of England fans (it’s the ex-Aussie players that don’t respect him). England fans know he is the Aussie’s best batsmen, which is why they boo him. So, Ricky, take it as a compliment, and he probably does, that is if he noticed it at all.

If Giles Clarke really wants to know about bad behaviour then he should perhaps visit the cheap seats at the Aussie grounds, and then he’d realise that Barmy Army antics and some good natured booing is nothing at all. But then he wouldn’t be anywhere near the cheap seats, he’d be in the royal box, out of sight, out of touch and ready to tell everyone to behave like he was taught to at prep school.

Sorry for not posting yesterday. I only just got chance to watch the highlights on Channel 5 Online. If England were going to win the game then they needed a magic spell like they did on Friday morning. They didn’t get it, but the Aussie’s batted real well, and we should expect that. The Canary Yellow’s don’t have the batting they once did, but Mike Hussey and Michael Clarke are both very good batsmen, and they both batted well on a good pitch. Batsmen are allowed to bat well. Yes, it didn’t swing and the pitch was a touch on the slow side, but a draw was a fair result in the end. Mark Nicholas was optimistic. Headingley will be an interesting proposition, and if the sun don’t shine then this will be a result pitch.

Interesting. England had a phenomenal day yesterday. Seven wickets for nothing in the morning, with Onions and Anderson running through the Australian batting. With the ball swinging and England on fire, they made Ponting, Hussey and co. look like a West Indies team. With Strauss on top form and the Sherminator looking confident the match is set up very nicely indeed. Big shame its going to rain all today!

Shane Watson. Words fail me. Yet he scores runs. Is this the same Shane Watson that was scared of the dark in 2005? Someone put everyone out of their misery and remove this annoying character from the field first thing tomorrow please.

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