Friday, November 29, 2013

Mitch: The Fear Factor for the Poms

After winning the first commonwealth bank ashes test at Gabba, player of the match Mitchell Johnson said that the firing of bouncers will continue during the whole ashes series. Mitch warned that there will be no respite from the bombardment of the bouncers inflicted on England at Gabba.

Mitchell Johnson, who missed the Ashes selection earlier in this year, has made a sensational comeback into the Test side. His all-round performance during Gabba test played a key role in the 381 run victory at Gabba, which came after 9 test matches for Australia. The pacer kept the pressure on all the time on the Barmy Army with his speedy bouncers and short balls during both the innings. He picked up 9 wickets in the test (4-46 in the first inning, 5-42 in second inning) which caused England to collapse tamely. Almost all English batsmen found it difficult to handle Mitchell’s pace and bounce. He also contributed with bat 74 runs in the 1st innings and 39* in the second innings and his all-round contribution gave Australia a much needed win. Aussies also continued their record of being unbeaten at Gabba since last 25 years.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Veteran Khan can still do it

Zaheer Khan appears close to full fitness again and he should be included in India's Test squad for the upcoming tour of South Africa.

India's selectors have much to ponder and plenty of options as they assess who to take to South Africa as the two top-ranked Test nations get set to go head-to-head next month.
While all the attention has been fixed on Sachin Tendulkar's retirement, India must move on and eventually begin to focus on the tough task that is taking on South Africa on their own patch.
In addition, including pace bowler Khan will give them a better chance of coming away from the two-Test series with a victory as they look to overcome the cricket betting odds, as the home side are likely to be favourites to prevail.
There are doubts over whether the 35-year-old can still deliver on the biggest stages but, according to reports, he has been working very hard on his fitness in France and looks in good shape ahead of a possible inclusion in the squad.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

England should be confident heading into the Ashes

As months have turned into weeks, and the weeks have turned into hours the tension, nerves and excitement have only become more intense in the lead up to the ashes. Despite Australia showing some signs that they have the ability to challenge England in the summer, overall the series win was relatively comfortable for the home side, winning 3-0 to ensure they retained the ashes yet again. As an England fan, any England victory, particularly in an ashes series, is something to savour, but I couldn’t help get the feeling after the five matches we hadn’t seen the best of what England had to offer. Moments of brilliance were book ended with relatively average cricket, from both teams. Players out of form, combined with slow pitches, resulted in ordinary test cricket. The five tests didn’t ignite the passion of the previous ashes series. The rivalry was still present but because the English were clear favourites, Australia just couldn’t keep up. The simple answer to why England didn’t play there best cricket is because they didn’t have to. This time against Australia however, they will need to perform.
Alistair Cook
(Photo credit: nic_r)
England’s batting looks promising. Cook and Trott piled on the runs in the last ashes series down under and there’s no reason why they can’t repeat their staggering performances again. The quicker, bouncier tracks should complement their batting styles and I think this is also true for the whole England batting line up. On the back of his recent performance, it’s likely that Michael Carberry will open the batting alongside Cook. Although relatively inexperienced at international level, he’s been around the domestic circuit enough times to form a wise head on his massive