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By unbalanced zealot
OK ... if anyone remembers, back a couple of years ago I made a lot of jokes about Michael Clarke being over-rated etc.

Well, I have to say I was wrong on that front. As a player, the man is a class act. Seems like he's taking his purple pacth of form into India too.
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By fuser
I always liked Clarke, in this tour of India he seems to be the only batsman Aussies have, this is weakest Australian team I have seen in my life.
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By Swagman
fuser wrote:I always liked Clarke, in this tour of India he seems to be the only batsman Aussies have, this is weakest Australian team I have seen in my life.

That's what someone said about the 1989 Ashes Australians.....
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By Godstud
Cricket is an insect, not a sport.
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By Swagman
fuser wrote:I always liked Clarke, in this tour of India he seems to be the only batsman Aussies have, this is weakest Australian team I have seen in my life.

I recall Richie Richardson saying something similar in 1995 when Australia won the Frank Worrell trophy.

The West Indies have yet to win it back.

And...........the Urn has returned
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By fuser

btw, thanks to Australian team I have already won a bet of about $5 with my brother.
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By Swagman
Dagoth Ur wrote:Cricket? You gotta know what a crumpet is to understand cricket. - Raphael

The Crumpets sit in the stands and get spotted by the camera crews....
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By Heisenberg
I took a kind of sick, masochistic pleasure in watching England get torn to pieces. Kevin Pietersen needs to retire immediately (not that he's ever been particularly good).
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By Prosthetic Conscience
The Ashes have been a complete massacre.

1st Test: Australia v England at Brisbane - Nov 21-24, 2013
Australia 295 and 401/7d; England 136 and 179 (81.1 ov, target: 561)
Australia won by 381 runs

2nd Test: Australia v England at Adelaide - Dec 5-9, 2013
Australia 570/9d and 132/3d; England 172 and 312 (101.4 ov, target: 531)
Australia won by 218 runs

3rd Test: Australia v England at Perth - Dec 13-17, 2013
Australia 385 and 369/6d; England 251 and 353 (103.2 ov, target: 504)
Australia won by 150 runs

4th Test: Australia v England at Melbourne - Dec 26-29, 2013
England 255 and 179; Australia 204 and 231/2 (51.5 ov, target: 231)
Australia won by 8 wickets

5th Test: Australia v England at Sydney - Jan 3-5, 2014
Australia 326 and 276; England 155 and 166 (31.4 ov, target: 448)
Australia won by 281 runs

England never even looked like forcing a draw in a match. When you think that England were so arrogant as to literally piss on the pitch at The Oval this summer after winning the 2013 series 3-0 (one match won by just 14 runs, one by 74 runs, and another where the weather helped England get a draw - they were 37/3 in their 2nd innings, with a target of 332), this looks like a well-deserved thrashing.
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By fuser
I think failure of Cook as a batsman was the main reason, in the last ashes in Australia, he had managed to score at an average of above 80 iirc.
By pugsville
It was a complete shellacking. However the Australian Batting line up is still brtittle and questionable. Regularly 5-100 in this series. A series worry, Haddin just saved them (with some help) every single first innings, in every test the Australian first innings was in trouble, Haddin made at least 50 every single first innings (av about 70). Watson, Bailey were pretty questionable as batsman.

The English bowlers are nowhere no good with the kookaburra ball. Anderson is a great bowler when gets the reverse swing going but never been that good in Australian conditions and kookaburra ball. The English 4 man attack (pre stokes) is vulnerable if some are not at the top of their game, the Australians targeted swann went after him and effectively hit him out of the attack. With swann unable to provide the relief the pace bowlers had to be back in the attack more often with less rest. Anderson becoming used more as a stock bowler than a strike bowler. Only Broad had a good series. Stokes greatly help in spreading the work load when he came in, but Swann was gone by then and the replacement spinners wetre not even close in being up to it.

The Australian team has a number of problems.

(1) The Brittleness of the top 6 batsman, you cannot keep escaping from 5-100 every test. There is lack of batting depth or young batsman scoring enough runs to demand selection.

(2) Watson remains a key player despite his batting problems. He has a very mechanical footwork, places the foot swings through the line, once the ball starts moving he can be very quickly exposed. His conversion rate for good starts into real scores is also amazingly poor. And this is the Australian Number 3! His bowling is also a key peice of the puzzle, he bowls very very tight, and picks up wickets. His availability means that Harris and Johnson are used in very short and sharp spells, maximizing them as strike bowlers. Siddle performs great work as the workhorse of the attack. But watson's ability to come on and control bowl tight a few overs, makes the attack work well. If faced with good opposition who dont collapse the Australians will need Watson to bowl more overs, to protect and rest Harris and Johnson. Unfortunately Watson's hamstrings are made of glass. He rarely stays fit and bowling fit particularly for long periods. Unreliable very occasionally dominating batsmen who often doesn't convert, reliable bowler but unreliable body Watson remains a frustrating mix.

(3) The Age of the Squad. There is a few old stages, Rogers, Harris, Johnson, Clarke (not that old but Back issues) Watson (body , hamstring issues)
, Haddin. There's a bit of bowling depth around. Starc, Pattision, Cummings, Bird. (but not the quality of the current attack) I like Tim Paine for the keeping, but the Batting Alex Doolan is 28 and not there yet, (though players often came in late for good careers these days?!) Maddison a promising top order prospect young enough but not there yet. Hughes, still cracks out the runs locally but too many flaws.

The South Africans could be much much harder, and cerainly being 5 for not many is eventually going to cost.
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By fuser
South Africa is "the" best test team right now, I don't think the second one will even come close to the Africans.
By pugsville
Well The South Africans don't look so good right now. They have been Johnstoned. interesting to see how the South Africans respond in the next test.

Mitch Johnson is just dominating. No other bowler looked anyway near as dangerous.

Haddin made 0 and the Austrlaians still managed goo d first innings runs.

Australia has only 4 bowlers in the current team, eventually you can be exposed on a long day in the field, the firth bowler really helps to spread the load. Still not convinced about the batting (Mr Clarke how about some first innings runs?) still brittle. South Africans have a pretty good batting line up (I would say better than Australia)
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By fuser
Damn you Australia.

They have suddenly managed to pick themselves up from the dirt and are directly looking at the top spot.

btw, New Zealand is giving a big thrashing to Indians. 93/5 and now 571/6.
By pugsville
magnificent win by south Africa. great bowling good batting , fielding well, ,,,,,,,,,,,bad.

austrial,ia batting was shown up as brittle steyn got some good reverse swing. exposed.

3rd test hopefully a tight contest like to see both teams play, well,
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By fuser
England 229/7

Cook failed again, is the sudden downturn of English Cricket started? Where all the spinners in England have banished?
By Decky
is the sudden downturn of English Cricket started?

Sudden, are you mad? England stopped being the best the second we taught countries apart from England to play it. It's the same as football.
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By fuser
But England had recovered 3-4 years ago and was slowly climbing towards the top (at least in tests), 3 Ashes in a row, defeating India in India by 3-0 etc.

In fact they were the favourites in the latest Ashes as well but it seems the downward spiral begun from there.
By Decky
defeating India in India by 3-0 etc.

Meh defeating a minnow like India, does that prove anything? It isn't as if they are good team like Pakistan.

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