4th Ashes Test - Melbourne

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Wed 25 Dec 2013, 7:20 pm

First topic message reminder :

The Boxing Day test match is upon us people!

There are rumoured to be a few changes to the England side, one of course enforced with the retirement on Graeme Swann. There hasn't been too much about who will replace him, Panesar would be the obvious choice. The other all but confirmed move will be Jonny Bairstow taking Prior's place.


Australia:
CJL Rogers, DA Warner, SR Watson, MJ Clarke*, SPD Smith, GJ Bailey, BJ Haddin†, MG Johnson, PM Siddle, RJ Harris, NM Lyon

England:
AN Cook*, MA Carberry, JE Root, KP Pietersen, IR Bell, BA Stokes, JM Bairstow†, SCJ Broad, TT Bresnan, JM Anderson, MS Panesar


With the series already over, lets hope we just get to see some good cricket. From an English point of view, lets not lose 5-0!!

Now back to the Christmas pudding for me...
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 3:00 am

More of a struggle since lunch. Cook not going on a big blow.

The Australian bowlers are suffering a niggle or two ; so there is real opportunity here. Just need to strike the right balance between defence and sensible aggression. Longer they bat today the better...but they must keep scoring runs to keep the Aussies on the back foot.
We know how well they have pounced on weakness in this series.

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 3:01 am

Lots of criticism of Carberry, elsewhere especially.
Now, who has most runs for England in this series so far?
Um . . . . . . .

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Post by kwinigolfer on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 3:19 am

Oops, What have I done?

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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 3:49 am

kwinigolfer wrote:Lots of criticism of Carberry, elsewhere especially.
Now, who has most runs for England in this series so far?
Um . . . . . . .

I know it seems unfair...but the trouble is he is getting set every time and then becoming completely becalmed - putting pressure on his partner and handing the initiative back to Australia.

Others have failed worse (Bell , Root ) but I suppose it is the responsibility of the player who has got himself in to go on and make the most of it...

But perhaps this is the limit of his ability at this level ? In which case perhaps the criticism is a bit harsh...but conversely he may also be proving that he is no more than a stopgap. Compton number two , as it were.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 3:54 am

Deary me England handing the initiative over to Australia big time in this afternoon session. Cook undone by a good delivery, Carberry just never got going and paid for it getting trapped in his crease, Root gifting his wicket with a needless run-out and Bell also throwing away his wicket to a nothing delivery from Lynn. England went from 64 for 0 to 87 for 4 losing three wickets for one run. England now on 106 for 4 with Pietersen and Stokes at the crease. England lead by 157. A big partnership needed here you feel as tea approaches.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:00 am

Carberry has done pretty well all things considered in this series but do believe England should be looking to the future and at 33 Carberry is not it. He doesn't bring enough momentum with his batting to the team.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:12 am

England reach tea without any further calamities and are 115 for 4. The lead stands at 166 and the match back in the balance you feel.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:21 am

This match is moving along at such a rate of knots that it looks a fair bet at the moment that it could be done and dusted by the end of play tomorrow.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:29 am

Such is the brittle nature of England's tail that you feel Pietersen, Stokes and Bairstow must weigh-in with 150 runs from here on in. I cannot see the remainder adding more than 25 runs between them. In short if Pietersen, Stokes and Bairstow go cheaply then the target will be around the 200 mark but if they can dig in then the target could be around 250 to 300 which would not be easy to chase down.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:47 am

Stokes tries to hit Lyon over the top and is caught by Smith. England now 131 for 5 - the lead stands at 182. England desperate for another 50 partnership here.
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Post by Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 4:50 am

If that had been kp ....

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:03 am

Pietersen is the key wicket here you feel. If he can get 50+ then the lead may get to 250+. If he falls anytime soon the target you feel will be closer to 200 than 250. England 145 for 5 - England lead by 196 runs.


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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:12 am

Nice aggressive batting from Bairstow who is taking to Lyon's bowling hitting him for two sixes and a four. England move onto 164 for 5 and lead by 215 now. This partnership worth 33 so far. Every run priceless.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:17 am

Peter Seabiscuit Wheeler wrote:If that had been kp ....

I am not giving Stokes a free pass for not being KP ...or for his youth. That was stupid. Much to like about the young man , but he should feel bad about that. And learn from it.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:20 am

The hope for England to cling to is that since Melbourne began using drop-in wickets in 1996 the highest fourth innings run chase has been 183. Also if England were bowled out now then 219 would be the ninth highest run chase ever at the MCG.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:22 am

Warnie bullish about chasing up to 350  Shocked 

He has played on this ground a lot more than I have  Smile  , but I think he is stretching things a bit.

No one has passed seventy yet in this game , in three innings. He is counting on the pitch improving a fair bit . Unusual in Australia , I would think. Drop in pitch or not.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:25 am

But at least Stokes fell after putting on a 40+ stand whereas Bell (with bucket loads of experience) threw his wicket away first ball to a nothing shot. Bell is even more culpable in my eyes.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:28 am

alfie wrote:Warnie bullish about chasing up to 350  Shocked 

He has played on this ground a lot more than I have  Smile  , but I think he is stretching things a bit.

No one has passed seventy yet in this game , in three innings. He is counting on the pitch improving a fair bit . Unusual in Australia , I would think.  Drop in pitch or not.

But Warne is always bullish about Australia. Those stats and each score posted in this test suggests a total in excess of 250 will be a big ask to chase down.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:34 am

Haven't got 250 yet though...

Johnson strikes ! Useful knock from Bairstow cut off and KP once more left with that "untrustworthy" tail. Johnson again.

Every time England seem to be taking control...

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:34 am

A loose shot from Bairstow and he is caught in the slips off the bowling of Johnson. England 173 for 6 and the lead is 224. Pietersen can't afford to throw his wicket away like he did yesterday.
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Post by Born Slippy on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:35 am

This pitch looks an absolute belter now. Suspect Australia will chase 250 down with some ease. Another fairly miserable batting display so far.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:43 am

Well Australia are going to have to bat better than they did in their first innings. Run chase stats at MCG are suggesting that anything over 200 proves tricky - history dictates that but England no doubt will want a lead of around 300 before they feel more at ease though that looks highly unlikely now.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:51 am

A rush of blood from Bresnan an going for an extravagant sweep off Lyon and he is bowled for a duck. England 174 for 7 and at this rate Australia will be batting again before stumps.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:55 am

The brittle tail strikes again. Broad out for a duck caught at slip off Lyon. Oh dear. England 174 for 8.
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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:55 am

Lyon gets his 100th wicket.  clap 
Broad goes for a duck.
England 174/8 and they lead by 225.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:57 am

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 5:58 am

Oh dear Brad - not good.
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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:02 am

To be fair he was unsighted... all he saw was KP stepping back slightly and the bails coming off.
I wouldn't read too much into it.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:06 am

And that sums up England's day. Pietersen looking for his 50 goes airborne but is caught on the boundary for 49. A five for for Nathan Lyon. England 179 for 9 and Australia right back on top. England's batting frailties resurface.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:07 am

Linebreaker wrote:To be fair he was unsighted... all he saw was KP stepping back slightly and the bails coming off.
I wouldn't read too much into it.

Aargh ...all wicketkeepers are evil  devil 

Or at least inclined towards optimism.

KP holes out to Lyon the wrecker  Sad  England making a gift of this match to Australia. Their's to lose now.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:10 am

No doubt Pietersen will come under fire again for that shot but who can blame him when you look at how this tail bats.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:10 am


CaledonianCraig wrote:And that sums up England's day. Pietersen looking for his 50 goes airborne but is caught on the boundary for 49. A five for for Nathan Lyon. England 179 for 9 and Australia right back on top. England's batting frailties resurface.

Frailties ! Something stronger called for  furious 

Totally brainless cricket. Poor bloody bowlers have done it once in this match and now they'll be back in the field in less than a day...at the risk of sounding like Boycott , I am disgusted.

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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:11 am

Hell of a wind. The trap was set and KP went for it again.

The Australians will have their hands full too when they come out to bat, I'd say. All depends on what sort of a start they get.

232,658 punters at the G in these first 3 days.
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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:14 am

Good afternoon Monty. England All Out for 179.

So glad Lyon got his 5-fer.

Australia need 231 runs to win.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:15 am

Monty plumb low and England are bowled out for 179 - another England batting collapse is completed. Sorry but with a tail like that and batsmen gifting wickets England were never going to post a massive target.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:20 am

alfie wrote:
CaledonianCraig wrote:And that sums up England's day. Pietersen looking for his 50 goes airborne but is caught on the boundary for 49. A five for for Nathan Lyon. England 179 for 9 and Australia right back on top. England's batting frailties resurface.

Frailties !  Something stronger called for  furious 

Totally brainless cricket.   Poor bloody bowlers have done it once in this match and now they'll be back in the field in less than a day...at the risk of sounding like Boycott , I am disgusted.

Carberry has not done enough to cement the position. Decent knocks but once he has played himself in he has failed to score big. His age tells me they should get a youngster in and look to the future.

Root has been disappointing apart from one gutsy knock.

Bell committed hari-kari - a crazy shot.

I could go on but won't as Australia are set to begin their run chase.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:30 am

England, you feel, need a wicket or two in this mini-session.
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 6:30 am

Last five wickets fell for six !

Calculated to suck the life out of the bowlers before they start their work...if England had battled their way to this lead in slightly more conventional manner , I would believe they have a chance.

But the way this has gone , all the signs are saying 4-0.

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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 7:08 am

Gutsy comeback from Australia today. I honestly thought England might bat all day and set a total of over 300 runs runs to chase but once our bowlers broke the early resistance of Cook - only KP seemed a real threat.

So, 201 runs needed for Australia to win with all 10 wickets in hand.
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Post by KP_fan on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 7:09 am

I woke up...looked at the score-card...rubbed my eyes and looked at it again......." OMG the god has revoked the one day of joy granted with grace on the festive occasion of  Christmas" Shocked 

Normal services restored.......Haddin, the thorn in Eng's flesh did the unexpected again...of adding 50 odd for the last wicket....to the extend that this is becoming "expected"

and then Eng batted......worn off bodies.....tired, fatigued  minds probably already thinking of home .....were just blown away after some notions of resistance. When the minds are beaten up the resistance doesn't last long enough.

Carberry running on adrenalin in early games has normalized to potential and hurt Eng's response most by "tortoising" to his 10 runs

after a few games it is evident that Stokes should be played as a 4th bowler and not 5th...making room for one extra batsman....because Bresnan/ Broad inspite of having decent averages are looking like absolute tailenders against the quality attack.

Even half a Prior was better than this replacement that Eng has found  Headscratch 

Conceding a 5-fer and a collapse to Lyon is on surface shameful...but it happens that the "ordinary" looking guy gets the wickets as the batsmen think he his easy compared to the top-3 bowlers.

If Eng bowlers cannot pull out a miracle win here......then HOME will be the though on the mind of Cook and the rest of the team.....and Eng might do well to throw about half a dozen new guys.

Cook I believe should be relived from Captaincy...the pressure he seems to be under has killed his batting and might break him down


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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 7:13 am

Linebreaker wrote:Gutsy comeback from Australia today. I honestly thought England might bat all day and set a total of over 300 runs runs to chase but once our bowlers broke the early resistance of Cook - only KP seemed a real threat.

So, 201 runs needed for Australia to win with all 10 wickets in hand.

Should be a piece of cake , lb. To be honest , England don't deserve to win after that spineless effort today. Had it all set up for them - and just threw it all away. Good fight back from Australia ; but England buckled far too easily. The ones who are going home after the Tests will be relieved to get out of it ...low point of the tour for me.

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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 7:27 am

At least you were there on the best day for England, mate.

I was thinking about getting a flight down early tomorrow morning ... but on second thoughts.... maybe better to stay here (and mow the lawns first thing)... and watch it from home.  Smile
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 7:47 am

Linebreaker wrote:At least you were there on the best day for England, mate.
 
I was thinking about getting a flight down early tomorrow morning ... but on second thoughts.... maybe better to stay here (and mow the lawns first thing)... and watch it from home.  Smile

Similar. I will of course feel thoroughly ashamed at my lack of conviction when they bowl Australia out for 158 ... but cannot muster the will to make the tram trip  Sad 

No place like Australia for leaving a visiting team totally filleted ...they do have my sympathies to a degree. But some of those dismissals today...(still speechless )


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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 8:02 am

Can just summon the strength to point out to KP_fan , who is apparently just going by the score sheet , that Stokes is clearly not, at least yet , a fourth bowler...and anyway there isn't really a spare batsman around . Ballance has hardly played on tour : though you could argue he couldn't do much worse than Root or Bell.
Cook actually played really well today. Got a goodish ball in the end. Easier without the captaincy ? Certainly , in this situation. But I think he has enough gumption to come back from this ...and there isn't anyone else really at present.
Bairstow got out at the wrong time . But he played well until then ; and resisted better than Prior has done on this trip. May not be a long term solution , but has earned a bit more of a go.

And "throwing in half a dozen new guys" - even if such were available - is just random nonsense. You keep picking what you think is your best team and reconsider when the tour is over who you retain and who you need to replace.
As India did. And - eventually - Australia.

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Post by KP_fan on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 8:29 am

Eng are blaming schedule for the debacle.... well they have such meticulously planned well spaced with practice games, and acclimatization time built in itinerary.
They are the ones who should complain the least about scheduling.

ask India on their difficult tour of SA what a bad itinerary is ?

and half the Ausies in between the Ashes when Eng were on R&R....played 7 ODis and 3 T20s in India

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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 8:43 am

KP_fan wrote:Eng are blaming schedule for the debacle....  well they have such meticulously planned well spaced with practice games, and acclimatization time built in itinerary.
They are the ones who should complain the least about scheduling.

ask India on their difficult tour of SA what a bad itinerary is ?

and half the Ausies in between the Ashes when Eng were on R&R....played 7 ODis and 3 T20s in India


Well , KP has spoken along those lines. There is some truth in it ; but when you are getting hammered like this it is better to keep such thoughts to yourself. It just sounds like making excuses.

KP is feeling down , I think. Doing his best for his team ; with not enough support. And not quite in command of his own game either. Saying stuff that is largely unhelpful about the tail - it may be true but what sort of a message does it send the bowlers who are charged with trying to hold up an end ? In my experience , a tailender who feels trusted tends to do better. And just swiping when you still have a couple of partners left hasn't got him anywhere has it ?

Like most of them , KP will be glad to get home for a rest. Hopefully being on the wrong end of this carve up will motivate him to come back with a bang.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 9:02 am

How can we be so bad?

I went to sleep with us 100 odd ahead and with 10 wickets in hand Sad
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Post by alfie on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 9:05 am

Olly wrote:How can we be so bad?

I went to sleep with us 100 odd ahead and with 10 wickets in hand Sad

All your fault then , Olly  Smile 

At least you didn't have to watch it happen...

alfie

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 9:18 am

alfie wrote:
Olly wrote:How can we be so bad?

I went to sleep with us 100 odd ahead and with 10 wickets in hand Sad

All your fault then , Olly  Smile 

At least you didn't have to watch it happen...

TREBELL WE ARE YOU??? COME SAVE US
Good Golly I'm Olly
Good Golly I'm Olly

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Post by Duty281 on Sat 28 Dec 2013, 10:28 am

Relax, this is going to be the best thing to happen to English cricket in the long-run.

Get battered now, and we at last draw a line under the last four years - and the tired team we have been since the UAE.

Cook should stay as captain - this experience will make him all the stronger - but I do really think it's time for Flower to go. Then England can start again with a renewed impetus.

You will never, ever convince me that this Australian team is better than this English team because, quite frankly, they're not. England were 5/10 in the summer, but they've been 2/10 in this series. Tired and pathetic. More a case of England being bad than Australia being good, although Australia have been plenty of the latter at times.

5-0? Bring it on. It could just be the perfect tonic for England in the long-run - similar to when Australia humilated England in the rugby once, and a few years later, England were world champions.

Come on Australia - humiliate us. England needs it.

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