Tuesday, 19 November 2013
The greatest show in cricket kicks off on Wednesday evening only months after England nearly won a test match in the dark at the Oval in what we call Summer.
Well now, in what our comrades Down Under call Summer, the old rivals prepare to square up yet again.
Many have had their say on these back to back series, being done to rejig the timetable to ensure England never finish an Ashes tour to Australia and go straight into preparations for the Cricket World Cup.
But like it or not, this is the pinnacle of cricketing entertainment outside of India v Pakistan as both teams want to win and win well.
All of the talk from the Australians is designed to throw England off their game and crumble under pressure.
Michael Clarke knows his best 11 cannot beat England’s best 11 without the aid of some tricks of the trade.
Thing is Pup, it might have worked with previous England teams but this one knows how to win and win very well indeed.
All of the batting collapses in recent battles between the two sides have come from the men in green and gold. Yes England struggled to make many runs this summer but on true Aussie wickets expect England’s batsmen to sell their wickets for very high prices indeed.
The Aussies have won one test in 2013, they need to win at least two and pray for rain in the next six or seven weeks to have any chance of reclaiming the Ashes.
It’s why the psychology began early, but England seem to be meeting it head on especially Pietersen who hilariously accepted that yes he did have an ego so what?
Stuart Broad has virtually given every Australian a licence to come and sledge him after he didn’t
walk at Trent Bridge.
Meanwhile Cook sits silently by, the epitome of cool and knows seven weeks of ‘dull, unimaginative captaincy’ (copyright SK Warne) will win England the Ashes outright on Australian soil once again.
The pace of the series will once again be set at the Gabba, England should simply aim to win as many sessions as they can on day 1, 2 and 3.
If they do that they could be in a strong position at a weekend and who knows 1-0 could be a real possibility.
Brisbane should hold happy memories for the tourists as should Melbourne and Sydney with only Perth looking like a banana skin for this team.
Prediction - it all depends on the first test but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Captain Cook and his crew return from their voyage with another 3-0 under their belts....