Day four was probably England’s best of the match, we cruised passed the follow on total and then some. When Australia batted we took wickets regularly but at no time threatened to challenge the Aussies dominance in this particular match. The final day started in an exciting way with the three quick English wickets giving Australia hope before the rain swept in and washed the day out. The Aussies may have felt hard done by but I don’t think they’d have bowled England out had the weather not intervened. After all we’d been 30ish for 3 twice at Lords and both times made over 300. We’ll never know…
So the Ashes are retained after 14 days of cricket and I can’t remember England holding onto them for three consecutive series in my lifetime? It was a bit of an anti-climax retaining the Ashes in a near empty stadium after a rain affected draw but having endured the lean times of 1989-2005 it’s hard to be too disappointed. England now have to win at least one more test to secure the series win which shouldn’t be a problem, despite Australia finally getting their act together. It looks like this winter’s series down under will be more competitive but if both teams are at their best, England will win.
However, next up is the first ever Ashes test at Durham, a wicket that should offer more help for the bowlers than Manchester. England may well choose to play Graham Onions at his home ground, maybe Broad will be the bowler to miss out this time? Both teams are strong in the bowling department so whoever bats best should control the match. England’s top three haven’t really fired yet in this series but we know they will do soon!
I’ve just finished reading “The Crossing Places” by Elly Griffiths, another book in the ‘Waterstones loves’ series. This means it’s rated alongside novels such as ‘The Kite runner’ amongst others which is high praise indeed. The Crossing places is a really good read, set in north Norfolk it tells the tale of ‘Ruth’, an archaeologist who helps the police with a murder enquiry and is a bit of a ‘who done it’. The Norfolk coast is painted vividly, the characters are accessible and the story is a good one but as a mystery it doesn’t really work. I’d pretty much guessed who done what before the end but that didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the book. I liked Griffiths’ characters and I’d definitely pick another one of her books off the shelf. However it doesn’t compare to the other books in this series that I’ve read so far.