The defeat at the Gabba is more than just the scores on the doors. It sets the tone for the rest of the series and I wonder if England will be a laughingstock by the end.
Situation comedy seems to the fore – cunning plans and they don’t like it up them- a cunning plan to get Smith out didn’t work and he ground England into the earth and the Aussie quicks bowling short and at the lower England order who don’t like it up ’em!
So where do England go?
Regroup, review, revise and renew and all by Saturday! Cook needs a score, Stoneman is secure if not spectacular, Vince good in parts, Root inventive captaincy which was a joy of to watch, batted well in the second dig but needed to go on, Malan still flattering to deceive?, Ali outbowled by Lyon, injury concern, Bairstow good game but was the breaking media story a diversion? Woakes still learning about Australian bowling conditions but shouldn’t be doing so in a test, Broad still thinks he’s the bees knees and never wrong, must be a challenge to manage, Ball wrong selection batting poor, bowling worse, Anderson grumpy moody not particularly effective and possibly injured. I still think it’s a tour too far for him but we shall see.
So where do Australia go?
That’s a simple one…just carry on carrying on. Smith has turned a disparate group and exceptional selections into a cohesive team. He led from the front and whilst it wasn’t always spectacular it was effective, business like and above all built on patience on a good foundation; I wouldn’t say solid ground because it wasn’t but it’s a good start.
One wonders where the urn will be won?
England held their own for three days, the third innings was key as always and failing then meant they were doomed. Cooks form and decision to hook when he didn’t need to and just needed to follow Smiths patience was probably the turning point of the match. On such small margins are games won and lost.
A few stats for today 6154 people turned up today for free, over 130,000 over the five days, England have now won one and lost 7 of their last 9 tests abroad and who says when it will stop? Perhaps England should opt for four day tests to stop the rot, but all of the overs over 5 days would be crammed into 4 (yeah?) so perhaps that’s not the option!
Oh well Adelaide the first ever Ashes day/night test and England’s best chance of a win!
Onwards and upwards!