Saturday, 1 August 2015

Edgbaston and on...

Three tests, three thrashings, England lead the series 2-1 that's the very good news.  
The dark cloud is an injury to Jimmy that will see him miss the next match at least.  
Finn played and had his best match for England.  He looked superb and should be a confident new ball partner for Broad at Trent Bridge, this could be the making of him.
Mark Wood seems the obvious choice to slip back in as the third seamer with Plunkett and Footit added to the squad.  If this the kind of wicket we used to expect at Trent Bridge then I'm confident England can take twenty wickets even without Anderson in the side.
Bell's move up to three proved a success in this match, Root continues to be in the form of his life and Ali scored vital runs with the tail again.  
Adam Lyth is not contributing with the bat but has been retained for the next test.  If he fails it could be his last for a while.  Buttler is having a lean time too but his keeping has been solid and we know he'll come good with the bat.

Australia are the team with problems, the middle order is non existent, if the top three don't get the runs (like they did at Lords) they don't look capable of getting a score in English conditions.  The Aussies of the nineties knew how to play in England as the likes of Hayden, Langer, Hussey and both Waughs all played a lot of county cricket.  International cricketers rarely play in their own domestic leagues nowadays, let alone over seas.  The one exception is Chris Rodgers, say no more.
The lauded strike bowlers are erratic, in hindsight injury to Ryan Harris was a massive loss, surely Peter Siddle would have bowled well at Edgbaston?  Worst of all the captain Michael Clarke is in dire form and nothing is going right for him.  There is little chatter from him these days either, no 'broken arm' threats this time around.

Australia haven't won an Ashes series here since 2001 and in those 14 years only India, Sri Lanka and South Africa (twice) have managed to win in England.  This Aussie team is not as good as those that have lost here on the last three tours.  If we have a typical Trent Bridge wicket and England bowl it in the right place we will win the ashes next week.


A book.

I first read "To Kill a Mockingbird" at high school in the early eighties.  I began reading it because I had no choice and little enthusiasm but it hooked me up and moved me.  I've just finished reading it again, thirty years on it is even more addictive, more beautiful, more moving and at times very funny.  I absolutely loved it second time around and urge anyone to get a copy, if you haven't read it, why not?  If you have, read it again.

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