Monday, 6 January 2014

The URN Returns - Brought to Australia by Johnson & Johnson


The Aussies must be singing 

You hit me once
I hit you back
You gave a kick
I gave a slap

and the revenge is complete.
We have two different test series in cricket, one the Ashes, two the rest of all other test series. There isn't a huge turnout for the latest series which was between the top two teams in the world, India and South Africa, which was also the farewell test for one of the legend, even after they allowed the entry free. But, the Ashes had a fantastic crowd for all the tests. Not only England and Australia, people from all over the world follows the Ashes. This time the return Ashes happened too early, for the first time two Ashes in the same year. Aussies who were humiliated in England were looking for revenge and get the Urn back in their home.

And, the revenge is complete and they complete it in a dominating style, completely one-sided series. Yet another whitewash, 5-0, by the Aussies. They were not at the receiving end this time and this is not the first time they have white washed England, but this was unexpected. This is the Aussies we know. Maybe the Aussies we don't want our team to face. Everyone was making fun of Sir Ian Botham for predicting a 5-0 favoring England, at-least he got the half of his prediction right. It's very early to say the Aussies of old time are back, but definitely England were no match to Aussies. Let's wait for the results of their next tour to South Africa.None of the teams has won an away test last year, so not just India every team struggles to win outside their home. For that matter, India really played well against South Africa.

As Lehman wanted the Aussie people really gave it to Broad right from the start because of his non-walking incident in the previous Ashes series. But, he replied with a five-for in the first test itself. That's the only high point for him in the whole series. They booed him till his last innings at every ground. Johnson broke his toe. Not only to Broad they gave it to everyone. Trott left the team after the first test, Swann retired midway, overall a terrible series for England. In the first test Clarke sledged Anderson "Get ready for a f***king broken arm" which really set the tone for the series and the Aussies never looked back.

All five tests looked same, England lost bad, lost terribly, totally lost, completely lost, etc. And, Aussies did it with a same playing eleven which was amazing, considering the injury prone Harris and Watson lasted for five consecutive tests. Losing by 150 runs was their best performance of the series. After the terrible first test, I thought England may bounce back like they did against us in the second test, but they couldn't in the second test as well. Aussies had their one hand on the Urn already and a whitewash looked inevitable. 

Aussies gave them more chances, their top order collapsed many times, but England never really seized any opportunity. Time and time again Haddin saved the Aussies more than often with Johnson or Clarke or Smith in his company and proved still a lot of cricket left in him. Rogers and Warner are the other stars with a bat. Clarke and Watson didn't have a great series, but they had at least one good game, unlike Cook or Pieterson or Bell. Even the Sir Jadeja of Australia, Steve Smith had a good series.

And that man Johnson not only picked wickets and scored runs, but also scared the hell out of every English batsmen with his faaaast bowling and his big Mushtache. He picked up 37 wickets in the series. Every England batsmen danced for his tunes like Raina.  He was the star of this series without any doubt along with Haddin. Even his batting average was better than Cook, Bell and Root and almost equal to Pieterson and Carberry. And, in bowling he tops the list with 37 wickets. Harris, Siddle, Lyon everyone played their part really well. Only positive thing for England is they have found a new all-rounder Ben Stokes, only one to score a century for England in this series, also picked up some wickets.

From this series it's proven that every team is a lion in their own den and a cat outside. And, not only for Indian batsmen everyone finds it difficult to face the fast and short pitch bowling. Now looking forward to the Australia's tour of South Africa to know whether Australia are really as good as they looked in this series. Long live test cricket, long live Ashes.

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