Friday, 7 January 2011

From the abyss to the..................

You could always go for 11 new faces for the next series but that's not realistic. When Clarke has dug in he's looked good but every time he loses concentration he gets out. Trott and Cook never lost concentration and therefore got huge tons.

I haven't heard Skull talk about Hughes but I think the guy can do it, whether his temperament can improve enough I'm not sure. He's worked on his technique but shot selection has brought his downfall - like most of our batsmen - and therefore I don't think you can be harder on him than anyone else. Watson is infuriating; more often than not gets Aus off to a great start but throws it away either by edging or running himself/others out.

My 15 going forward for the next 2 years:

Shaun Marsh
Mike Hussey
David Hussey
Peter George
Mark Cameron
James Pattinson

Hughes is obviously a contentious issue but in my view there isn't many opening options around the country at present. Cosgrove could be one of few others.

I think Haddin is important and Paine has time to make his mark. Keeping some senior players is vital which is why I've included Mike Hussey but fear he'll retire before 2 years is up. David Hussey is 32 and could well do what his brother did upon entering the Aus set up.

Quicks are around - who knows who will stand up and grab some poles? If Johnson wants back in he has to find consistency. Noone is expecting him to bowl like McGrath but bloody hell he can't keep bowling like an uncoordinated under 10!

Spin is a major issue and I fear the main role for a spinner for the next 2 years will be a container rather than a strike bowler. I guess Swann didn't take the game apart during the Ashes but still bowled well as the series wore on and played a part keeping pressure on.

Watson, Khawaja and the Husseys form a group you can plan your batting around. If Marsh can open you can have Watson, Marsh, Khawaja, Hussey and Hussey as your top 5. Not bad in my view. Obviously Clarke would not bat at 6 but if he's not in form anyway...........

As Border did, time to draw a line in the sand and move forward. Honest appraisals and determination to do better. If the bowling is good it may get you out but you just cannot gift it to them. Too often Aus' batsmen have succumbed to the pressure by England's bowlers by fishing outside off when there was no need to play a shot. Our bowlers lacked pressure and innovation, getting into modes of just putting it up there without any consistency. You may not win many test matches against a team like England with the personnel Aus has got but you can fight and 3 innings losses in a 5 test series smacks of folding when it gets hard.

Well done England who deserve the rewards for excellent planning and execution.


  1. Can't argue with that squad and sentiments Lefty, i will have more to say soon..

    One point though, no Tests now until August!!!!
    This is a big concern to further devopment. I know many countries and boards are concentrating on (the pointless) world cup, but how can players build up and continue form.

    Maybe CA needs to structure in home/home games for aspiring Test players that won't play IPL and ODI world cup; best 22 (24) over 4 days. I'd pay to see that. The Internal Test series! (sounds like a medical proceedure!

  2. The lack of test matches comes at the perfectly wrong time. NZ are playing Pakistan at home at the moment, South Africa have just finished a series vs India so unless CA can bargain with Bangladesh for a 3 test series there's no chance of much happening til August.

    This is the lowest ebb at the moment; if Aus makes it so. If this Ashes is just written off and the same group is simply persevered with; as Clarke indicated, then there may be more lows to come. India tour here next summer and the bowling we put on show against England will not trouble Indian batsmen; even if Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar all retire before then!

    David Hussey is the key to the batting lineup for me. The North trial didn't work in tough situations, nor has the Smith trial to an extent. The thought of the Hussey brothers batting together is awesome. Mike might not hang around for too long but then David slots up a spot and this makes an opening for a Ferguson, Smith (if....) and co. Just to take the limelight for a bit longer; out of my 15 is my ideal 11:

    Hussey M
    Hussey D

  3. Some nice suggestions among your thoughts chaps but don't write off Smith yet. I agree with Marsh but would also throw in Nick Maddinson, a lefty from NSW who has batted at 4 and opened with equal success. Pattinson and Cameron are top suggestions but O'Keefe over rated (then, I don't like left arm greek orthodox. Hauritz must return.
    Keep Chappell, and sack the rest and seek Geoff Lawson for one selectors role and Rod Marsh for another. I'd go so far as taking Langer out of the dressing room an asking him to be a selector.

  4. How's it feel to be on the losing side? Where was all your support when the chips were down? Has cricket fallen out of favour with the Australian public, because from observations it seems like the Barmy Army out-sung and out-supported your supporters? Will Australias supporters be there now through the process of re-construction like the Barmy Army was for England right through the dark ages.

    I enjoyed Siddle's and Smiths stand at the end there, if the title man of the series was to be awarded to one of your blokes it has to be Siddle for me, the bloke done good in all areas of the contest and was a joy to watch as he was the only bloke there for much of the time that looked as though he was up for it. I said on a forum elsewhere before the start that the man England should watch out for would be Siddle, he looks like a bloke that takes his cricket seriously and has venom in his approach to playing us. Hopefully a man to watch over the next few years.

    Hopefully they wont write off Smith - he looks like a long term project and it'll be a shame to lose any chance of there being a wrist spin option.

    Hard luck Aussies, but I reckon it bodes well for future comps eh?

  5. very gracious MPA!
    clearly you don't read most of the posts here... i think we are a self critical mob who espouse sportsmanship; and we have been like that through highs and now lows.

    i know there are ugly aussie supporters, but i think it is poor form and shows you in an uncomplimentary light to ask those questions in the first paragraph in that way- we have asked those questions too, but we aren't gloating.

    But as i don't moderate opinion here, i don't mind leaving that in, the tide has turned and now it appears we have the "ungracious geezer" to go with the "ugly aussie".

    Maybe i'm miss-reading the tone of your first paragraph, if so, i'm sorry, but it asks the questions we are asking of ourselves and have covered in many posts here.
    The other stuff on Siddle and Smith i totally agree with.

    I hope you continue to contribute here because we value opinion from all quarters.
    And yes, it does bode well for future comps when the playing field is level, which it hasn't been here because England are such a better side.

  6. MPA, Full grounds for the test series!!!! NOT all or even most of them Engerlish... Yes the Aussie support is there.
    As far as singing goes we are just not manly enough to do it, so yes you spanked us in that factor.
    I love cricket just as much as any of the Barmy Army, and I love them as well 'cos they are supporters of cricket.
    The chips were down nearly all series, it was like watching a car crash in slow motion (2 months). How does losing feel? Horriible, you shouldn't have to ask!
    It is also exciting because maybe, finally we can have the changes that we have been screraming for for the past 2 years.

  7. ...and i'll add, it sucks to be on the losing side. As Sledgey said, we can now get the change that we have been screaming for for 2 years. But at least it is only 2 years, if we want to act like children here, i'll ask, "How did it feel being on the losing side for over 2 decades?" I can ask that sincerely, because i wouldn't know.
    Everyone thinks they are a champ when they knock the champ off. I'll recant my vitriol when i see longevity from England...which based on how they played i may.