England’s attack in this game consists of an ageing Jimmy, a washed up Broad, a county medium pacer, a part time off spinner having a mare, and a 20 year old leggie who’s only played a handful of first class games. The result? 479-4. It’s hardly a surprising outcome when you think about it. The cupboard is so bare it’s embarrassing.
Although Anderson has generally bowled pretty well on this tour, the conditions don’t suit him. This has left us really exposed. The other members of the attack simply aren’t international standard. Stuart Broad clearly was once, but he can’t do it with any level of consistency anymore. 80mph when you don’t really do much with the ball (unless the pitch is helping you) simply isn’t going to cut it. See Bird, Jackson.
I really can’t be bothered to do this all over again in detail, so I’ll just link to George Dobell instead. It’s good to see that many of the issues we’ve discussed again and again on this blog are getting some national and international attention. I’d like to ask Tom Harrison how he can possibly think English cricket is in rude health when decent but hardly world beating players like Khawaja and the Marsh brothers are taking us to the cleaners.
This blog’s raison d’etre is to focus on England, rather than Australia, but I will say one thing for the Aussies: they’ve completely out-thought us both on and off the pitch. I suspect that the policy of preparing slowish pitches that give the seamers very little has been a deliberate ploy. And it’s a very clever one.
Everyone knows that teams need genuine pace or high class spin to take twenty wickets on lifeless surfaces. By preparing such wickets Australia have completely neutered England’s attack and simultaneously mollified their own batting flaws.
Obviously this strategy also gave England’s batsmen more of a chance, but obviously not enough of a chance – partly because our senior guys haven’t performed, partly because momentum (and scoreboard pressure) has been against us, and partly because we’re not as good as many people thought we were.
Overall this tour has been a thoroughly depressing experience. But everything in English cricket’s garden is rosy, right?