December 30, 2010

England Win Freaking Cricket Match: Victory in Melbourne saw England retain the Ashes for the first time in 24 years and hand Australia their first ever home series with two innings defeats. Despite no clear successor, there are calls for Australian Captain Ricky Ponting to step aside.

posted by Mr Bismarck to other at 08:36 AM - 5 comments

I just got back from England (and Wales and Ireland) and the last morning I was in London the breakfast shows were shitting themselves about the return of the Ashes. I am still too confused by the rules and terminology, but I am cricket curious.

posted by scully at 02:20 PM on December 30, 2010

As many of the commentators in England have said, even more remarkable is the way in which England retained the Ashes (and Australia folded like a wet paper bag).

England's two wins in the series were both by more than an innings. Correct me if I'm wrong, more seasoned cricket followers, but that's an incredible beatdown a la, say, an 18-4 victory in a baseball game.

posted by boredom_08 at 03:44 PM on December 30, 2010

Also, Ponting will not play in the fifth and final Test in Sydney due to a broken finger, leaving his vice-captain Michael Clarke (owner of a sparkling 10% approval rating) to captain the side.

posted by boredom_08 at 05:00 PM on December 30, 2010

England's doing the sprinkler dance. The team saluted the Barmy Army with it after the victory in the 4th test.

Despite the sleep deprivation, not having Sky TV (so listening to Test Match Special on the radio through the night), and (probably most importantly) not being English (or Welsh), I'm delighted. England played very well in the most recent test, and in one of the other three, but Shane Warne perhaps summed it up best in commentary when he said "England playing some good stuff here, but the thing is, with both of these teams, when they're bad, they're REALLY bad."

posted by JJ at 08:00 PM on December 30, 2010

It's a very different series to 2005; it's a different series to 2009.

Correct me if I'm wrong, more seasoned cricket followers, but that's an incredible beatdown

The Boxing Day Test at the MCG is a fixture of the Australian sporting calendar; against the Poms, it's extra-special. Bowling out the Aussies for under 100, prompting the "fire drill" exodus in the final session of the first day, really hammered home the professionalism of England's approach and the fractured state of the Australian setup.

I've been listening to Test Match Sofa, which avoids some of TMS's soft-soaping. As they noted, a decade ago, Australia had a deep enough talent pool that many bit-part players would have walked into other countries' Test sides. Now you have an aging, off-form batting order, an erratic bowling attack, and selectors making knee-jerk decisions to call up people who really aren't worthy of a place.

Still, there's Sydney to come, and the last thing England will want is a sloppy performance. They've got the World Cup to come, and India in the summer, which will be the true test of the squad.

posted by etagloh at 03:21 PM on December 31, 2010

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.