Thursday, November 23, 2006

welcome to the Gabbatoir

Thanks to Doug for the title of this posting (I've corrected your spelling, though).

Well, day 1 of the Ashes in Australia 2006-2007 (Australia 346-3) looks very much like day 1 of the Ashes 2002-2003 in Australia (Australia 364-2). I think this one is less bad for a number of reasons, mainly because they chose to bat this time, as I hope we would have done had we won the toss. Nasser Hussain's decision to put the Aussies in last time was interpreted by most, rightly or wrongly, as an act of instant psychological surrender before the series was even underway, and the writing was on the wall from then on.

It's not great, though. On the upside, Flintoff was the best of the bowlers, and looks to have made a full recovery. But we have to get Harmison bowling properly again - he bowled like a drain today, which was why Flintoff only gave him 12 overs all day - or we're undoubtedly down the dunny without a paddle. If I was in charge I would do two things:
  • Get a bowling analyst in to tell Harmison what he's doing wrong. Simon Hughes seemed to have nailed it (left arm not coming down straight, falling away to the off side, no control as a result) on Channel 5's excellent TV coverage in the summer, so let's wheel him in to give the big fella a few pointers. Geoff Boycott (as usual) has some trenchant opinions too....
  • Get a sports psychologist or a hypnotist in to pep Harmison up mentally. He's got all the physical attributes you could want but he does seem a strangely diffident sort for a fast bowler. People like Dennis Lillee and Andy Roberts never had any trouble getting geed up to attack the batsman, literally in Lillee's case on one or two occasions. What's Jos Vantisphout up to these days? Or does he only do golfers?

On a brighter note, the apple and mint jelly does seem to be setting quite nicely. I might even sample a bit tonight. Just need to roast up a 6-pound haunch of venison to have it with.


Anonymous said...

Yeah. sorry about that spelling. Probably one of my many "blind-spot" werds. Aw well.

Looking at the score dis marnin, maybe a future headline of oh, I dunno,


may be appropriate.

Have fun watching England get humiliated bate...

electrichalibut said...

Well, I skipped watching the "highlights" last night in favour of going to the pub and getting hammered. Wise move I think. I'm going to video the Wales game on Saturday, but I may decide to skip watching it on Sunday for similar reasons (i.e. if we get humped).

Anonymous said...

Did you mean thumped? Or is there stuff going in in those scrums that we don't know about.

Anonymous said...

I am trying to understand the ashes and therefore cricket in general, this time.

Thought I had it sussed.

But no.

You'll have to explain this to me I'm afraid:

Why didn't 'Oz' make England 'Follow through', sorry, 'Follow on' after their derisory first innings. This, I would have thought, would have made Australia virtually certain to win the test? No?
Instead, they batted again, hoping they would score well, (which they did), having to choose when to declare, and then HOPING the 'Poms' didn't find a bit of form, and do a 'Boycott' and slowly grind out a draw by NOT being bowled out...?

Ok. Oz won anyway.
But have I missed something tactical here?
Should I just forget it and leave it to you and the 'Barmy Army'?

Alex Warn said...

They batted again, hoping they would score well, New Trends (which they did), having to choose when to declare, and then HOPING the 'Poms' didn't find a bit of form.