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The Ashes Part 2

Well. Wow. Wonderful stuff! Australia wins the second test, goes 2-0 up in the series. Even Mad Jack McMad would not have predicted this. The Aussies played beautifully again, and fully deserved the result.

I think it's fascinating to consider what snooker players call 'the rub of the green', meaning that ineffable quality of luck that comes to visit one team or another. It was certainly against us in England in winter, where rain and poor umpiring decisions worked to accentuate the failings the team may or may not have had. (By the way, I do not consider the Broad incident poor sportsmanship - he had every right to stand his ground - but it was another case of poor umpiring). It's those just missed opportunities, the incredible, unlooked-for catches, the dismissals where everything has to go unusually wrong for the batsman for it to come off. I think it's fair to say that now, in this series, we've got the rub of the green with us, even to the fact of winning the toss twice. But it also speaks to the luck you make when you train hard and commit fully - the catching by the Aussies has been exemplary.

England has made much of their own bad luck. Cook has been awful - that second innings dismissal was appalling. Joe Root did very well, and that was an example of bad luck, I guess, when he was dismissed on 87. But most feel to poor shots, and England have fielded poorly - bad catching cost them 238 runs in Australia's first innings.

So, on to Perth, where the pitch is hard and bouncy and fast and Mitch Johnson will be hitting 155kph. Happy, happy days. But I think those writing England off are quite foolish; there was some middle order ticker on display, and for all we know, Mitch will lose his radar and Anderson will have a field day and write us off. Cricket is ever unpredictable.


Dec. 11th, 2013 05:35 am (UTC)



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