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England's Summer of Cricket 2023, Featuring The Ashes

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:17 pm

Wood's pace was not quite up there in that first over though he still was quick. The lengths weren't great. Fine half-century from Khawaja who is closing in on regaining the top-scorer position from Crawley for the series.

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:20 pm

50 for the embattled David Warner!

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Post by VTR Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:21 pm

This pitch must be flat as a pancake, the England collapse from 320ish for 4 yesterday didn't seem to matter at the time, but might actually be very important

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Post by guildfordbat Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:22 pm

Duty281 wrote:100 partnership. clap

Pretty equal effort from both. Wood on, so the crowd is awake. Finds an edge, but it goes through for four. Fifty for Khawaja. What a series he's had. Arguably Australia's player of the series. Was instrumental in their first two wins, and might play a key role in a third win...

Wilson now unable to differentiate between runs off the bat and byes. Doh

Yeah, so if Bairstow had taken it (unlikely I grant you) and appealed, Wilson would have given it out. Shocked

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Post by alfie Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:22 pm

Khawaja certainly has a strong case for PoTS. Reckon his efforts early in the series were the big reason the Ashes were retained before this game. If he steers them home to a record winning chase here he surely has it in the bag.

Meanwhile , Warner is making his case to retire when he wants to.

113/0. England need some inspiration. Or a run out.

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:23 pm

Wood still not at his sharpest. Surely doesn't seem to be fully fit. Perhaps they were thinking they'd have him at new batters in short 2 or 3 over spells, but the others weren't able to chip one out for that plan to be put into action. Perhaps they should have given an over or 2 before lunch, or should have had him straight away after lunch.

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Post by alfie Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:24 pm

All Wilson's decisions are just a prelude to a referall Wink

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:26 pm

They are overbowling Joe Root here. Need Broad to come on from the other end. He also has had only short spells. England is approaching a situation where they need magic. And Who else than Broad for that?

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:27 pm

Root beginning to lose it. Runs flowing. Think we're approaching the point where Australia are becoming favourites.

258 to get. Hope Julius now understands why some of us wanted a 400+ target.

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:28 pm

guildfordbat wrote:
Duty281 wrote:100 partnership. clap

Pretty equal effort from both. Wood on, so the crowd is awake. Finds an edge, but it goes through for four. Fifty for Khawaja. What a series he's had. Arguably Australia's player of the series. Was instrumental in their first two wins, and might play a key role in a third win...

Wilson now unable to differentiate between runs off the bat and byes. Doh

Yeah, so if Bairstow had taken it (unlikely I grant you) and appealed, Wilson would have given it out. Shocked

Would be better off getting some random person from the crowd to umpire.

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:29 pm

Wood even not a hundred percent, can be too hot to handle for even set batters as Khawaja found out as he gets pinged on the helmet. That one didn't bounce as much...

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Post by alfie Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:31 pm

And the run rate is racing now too. This is running away from England rather quickly. Obviously still lots of time for things to change ; but frankly at the moment I think Australia have gone from a remote chance to at least fifty fifty . We've seen this sort of thing before of course : often a big opening stand gives way to a brisk collapse . Maybe not so much on a road like this has become.

Wood steaming in. Does seem odd he was held back so long. Given Khawaja a bit of a bang on the helmet - and causes a ball change which England might be happy to see !

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:32 pm

Nasty one for Khawaja. England getting the ball changed as well. I think they've wanted a ball change from about the third over.

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:36 pm

Wood may not have more than an over left in this spell. Root's last over indicated they've already overbowled him. Should be Woakes and Broad on now...

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:40 pm

Woakes takes over from Root. Who will be from the other end? Has old Ben got a couple of overs in him today? He can open up a closed game with ball too. The body may not cooperate though...

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:42 pm

The rain seems to get stronger, they may not be on for too long? Poor over that from Woakes on come back. Was bowling slower than Anderson, and the line wasn't always demanding either.

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:42 pm

Skip the drinks, lads, looks as though it's going to pour down any minute!

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:43 pm

A rain interruption may not be bad for England at this stage, but pretty bad for Australia.

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:44 pm

And yes there's the rain.

I'd be surprised if they got back on today, however the forecast for tomorrow is clear so no Old Trafford-esque threat to the result.

249 to get, ten wickets left. England up against it. But they may retain faith through remembering how often Australia have collapsed in this series from strong positions. Aussies probably 55-45 favourites for me currently. Think if there is no further play today then it's good for England who can recharge and regroup. Need a magic spell tomorrow...

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Post by alfie Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:46 pm

Rain might be what England need . They're getting killed here at present and their best chance may be coming back tomorrow and starting again. I did fear the combination of tired bowlers and a flat pitch might undermine them but I'm taken aback by how ineffectual they've looked with the ball today.

Don't know what WINVIZ thinks ; but I'm calling Australia favourites now.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:49 pm

249 needed about 140 overs to go and 10 wickets in hand.
If I was Eng I would be worried....seeing horror sights of Warner raising bat 205* at some point,
But I am not and I am enjoying a good chase....as a neutral fan.
And have seen enuf cricket to know that games and especially chases don't extrapolate linearly.
The volume of runs to be chased often sets the tone of the chase.

I do see the point that Duty made a number of times( and lamented) ....pitches are docile by Eng standards but that is a double edged sword.
If these were green seaming pitches like in last Ashes and like India encountered there.....Eng too wouldn't have gotten the runs they did.
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Post by alfie Sun 30 Jul 2023, 2:51 pm

And though it seems a bit mean to say it , not sure the Broad Retirement business was helpful . A bit of a distraction from the main mission for England , perhaps ?

If he'd cleaned up Warner as usual it would have brought the house down , of course ! But he didn't. Hopefully he has One of Those Spells up his sleeve as they're probably going to need it.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 3:09 pm

msp83 wrote:Woakes takes over from Root. Who will be from the other end? Has old Ben got a couple of overs in him today? He can open up a closed game with ball too. The body may not cooperate though...

They showed Stokes practicing Off-spin in nets......he should bring it on
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Post by sirfredperry Sun 30 Jul 2023, 3:27 pm

The rain that's arrived will come as a relief to England. Given the forecast and the radar map you have to wonder whether there will be any more play today.

Tomorrow's forecast ain't looking too clever, either.

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 4:03 pm

sirfredperry wrote:The rain that's arrived will come as a relief to England. Given the forecast and the radar map you have to wonder whether there will be any more play today.

Tomorrow's forecast ain't looking too clever, either.

Tomorrow's forecast looks fine. Might get an isolated shower, but should fit in the 70-80 overs needed to conclude the game.

https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/forecast/gcpuvk7px#?date=2023-07-31

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 4:07 pm

Duty281 wrote:
sirfredperry wrote:The rain that's arrived will come as a relief to England. Given the forecast and the radar map you have to wonder whether there will be any more play today.

Tomorrow's forecast ain't looking too clever, either.

Tomorrow's forecast looks fine. Might get an isolated shower, but should fit in the 70-80 overs needed to conclude the game.

https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/forecast/gcpuvk7px#?date=2023-07-31

if all game is washed off today and there are some interruptions tomm...enabling 80 odd overs only as a max
means Aus need to go at 3.25 RPO and that's not a given.....draw also becomes a possibility
Eng do well to choke runs and Aus have shown the tendency to go in a shell
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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 4:12 pm

KP_fan wrote:249 needed about 140 overs to go and 10 wickets in hand.
If I was Eng I would be worried....seeing horror sights of Warner raising bat 205* at some point,
But I am not and I am enjoying a good chase....as a neutral fan.
And have seen enuf cricket to know that games and especially chases don't extrapolate linearly.
The volume of runs to be chased often sets the tone of the chase.

I do see the point that Duty made a number of times( and lamented) ....pitches are docile by Eng standards but that is a double edged sword.
If these were green seaming pitches like in last Ashes and like India encountered there.....Eng too wouldn't have gotten the runs they did.

It is indeed a double edged sword, but England have dominated in home conditions with traditional England pitches this century. The favourability for seam often makes up for any batting shortcomings. These wickets bring the Australians into it more. I don't think Khawaja would have done nearly as well had we had normal English pitches, for instance.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 4:24 pm

Duty281 wrote:
KP_fan wrote:249 needed about 140 overs to go and 10 wickets in hand.
If I was Eng I would be worried....seeing horror sights of Warner raising bat 205* at some point,
But I am not and I am enjoying a good chase....as a neutral fan.
And have seen enuf cricket to know that games and especially chases don't extrapolate linearly.
The volume of runs to be chased often sets the tone of the chase.

I do see the point that Duty made a number of times( and lamented) ....pitches are docile by Eng standards but that is a double edged sword.
If these were green seaming pitches like in last Ashes and like India encountered there.....Eng too wouldn't have gotten the runs they did.

It is indeed a double edged sword, but England have dominated in home conditions with traditional England pitches this century. The favourability for seam often makes up for any batting shortcomings. These wickets bring the Australians into it more. I don't think Khawaja would have done nearly as well had we had normal English pitches, for instance.

I agree...Eng needed it's home strength pitches
Taylor and Ponting on air pointed that the opening stand averaged 8 Runs for Aus last time in Eng
BUT then Brook, Crawley and Duckett would have barely averaged 20ish.

@VTR you pointed Brook and not Brooks and I noted and also noticed
Artherton on air call him Brooks a couple of times in this test as did Taylor atleast once.
It's that type of name where you automatically tend to add S at the end.....unless you have taken  special note
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Post by VTR Sun 30 Jul 2023, 4:51 pm

I'd argue then that they are being poor and lazy with their commentary. Surprised at that by Atherton, not at all by Taylor

Anyway, let's not make a big thing of that, agree on the pitches. I'd only really back Labuschagne and Smith to do well in English conditions. Could still have lost anyway, but if this does end up 3-1 to Australia then the flat pitches have been a total failure

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:06 pm

KP_fan wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
sirfredperry wrote:The rain that's arrived will come as a relief to England. Given the forecast and the radar map you have to wonder whether there will be any more play today.

Tomorrow's forecast ain't looking too clever, either.

Tomorrow's forecast looks fine. Might get an isolated shower, but should fit in the 70-80 overs needed to conclude the game.

https://www.metoffice.gov.uk/weather/forecast/gcpuvk7px#?date=2023-07-31

if all game is washed off today and there are some interruptions tomm...enabling 80 odd overs only as a max
means Aus need to go at 3.25 RPO and that's not a given.....draw also becomes a possibility
Eng do well to choke runs and Aus have shown the tendency to go in a shell

Going at 3.25 shouldn't be too strenuous. The innings is currently going at 3.55 and that's without Head/Marsh yet coming to the crease. I expect Moeen and Root will get a lot of overs tomorrow and they'll serve up plenty of boundary balls.

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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:27 pm

Still a day to go in the series, but BBC readers have put in their team of the series:

1. Usman Khawaja; 2. Zak Crawley; 3. Marnus Labuschagne; 4. Joe Root; 5. Harry Brook; 6. Ben Stokes; 7. Jonny Bairstow; 8. Chris Woakes; 9. Pat Cummins; 10. Mark Wood; 11. Stuart Broad.

Agree/disagree?

My own team would be: Khawaja; Crawley; Labuschagne; Root; Stokes; Marsh; Carey (WK); Woakes; Starc; Wood; Broad.

No dispute over the openers for me. No one has excelled at 3, so the nod has to go to Labuschagne. Root easily in at 4, has averaged over 50 with the bat and picked up a fair few wickets. Stokes quite comfortably slots in as well for his batting. Going to give a narrow nod to Marsh. Only batsman to average over 60 in the series (so far anyway, he may dip below tomorrow) and would easily usurp the more illustrious trio of Smith/Head/Labuschagne for runs given the same number of innings.

Carey gets in ahead of Bairstow for me. Yes, Bairstow has outperformed Carey quite convincingly with the bat, but goodness knows how many runs Bairstow has cost England with poor keeping. Carey has been good in this department. A good keeper over a good batsman, always.

Woakes, very easy call. 15 wickets @ 20 so far in the series, plus that 32* which steered England to victory. I'm confused why Starc isn't in the BBC team. He has taken the most wickets in the series so far and done it at an average of 27, whereas Cummins has five fewer wickets at an average that is 10 higher. Wood, another easy call, very similar figures to Woakes in the series and was reintroduced into the attack at the same time.  And Broad to round it off, the highest English wicket-taker so far.

Australia's best player of the series for me is Khawaja, quite easily. England's best player of the series is a lot tighter and I'm torn between Woakes and Wood. Maybe one of those can firmly put themselves ahead tomorrow?

I await KP_Fan's team of the series which will no doubt have Moeen in it!

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Post by GSC Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:30 pm

Carey Bairstow is closer than I would've thought. Don't think Carey's had a vintage series behind the stumps if not as bad as Jonny. And Jonny has far outperformed him with the bat.

I'd like to get Cummins in there, was a force in the first 3 tests even if he's looked out of gas since
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Post by Galted Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:46 pm

Duty281 wrote:

I await KP_Fan's team of the series which will no doubt have Moeen in it!

At 3, 7 and 8.

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Post by guildfordbat Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:56 pm

Galted wrote:
Duty281 wrote:

I await KP_Fan's team of the series which will no doubt have Moeen in it!

At 3, 7 and 8.

And no one else needed.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:57 pm

Galted wrote:
Duty281 wrote:

I await KP_Fan's team of the series which will no doubt have Moeen in it!

At 3, 7 and 8.
Nah, 3 and 7. Marnus will be at 8 as a bowler. Sorry, Manus.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 5:59 pm

Duty281 wrote:

I await KP_Fan's team of the series which will no doubt have Moeen in it!

1. Duckett *
2. Khawaja
3. Stokes
4. Root
5. Smith*
6. Marsh*
7. Carey*
8. Woakes
9. Wood
10. Broad*
11. Lyon

* requires discussion
Duckett has looked better than Crawley to me.....he is technically much "less bad" than Crawley as he gets inside the line of the ball....which is not perfect , one should get behind the line.
However Crawley stays feet rooted and plays across the line, is ugly.

Just because Smith bats at 4 doesn't mean we can't play him @5....he is not like his last series...but looked good still
Marsh is in as he got runs in almost every inning......and the team needs a 5th bowler
Broad marginally ahead of Cummins......retirement gift

Re: M. Ali.......he would fit in, if we were selecting Eng's best XI of the decade England's Summer of Cricket 2023, Featuring The Ashes 1f601
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Post by Duty281 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 6:20 pm

No Moeen is, indeed, quite the shock. Favouring the 7th highest run scorer of the series over the 2nd is quite interesting. Lyon? He only played a test and a bit? A good test, admittedly, but it was just the one.

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Post by KP_fan Sun 30 Jul 2023, 7:19 pm

Duty281 wrote:No Moeen is, indeed, quite the shock. Favouring the 7th highest run scorer of the series over the 2nd is quite interesting. Lyon? He only played a test and a bit? A good test, admittedly, but it was just the one.

This is a fantasy team with assumptions in our hand....so I would assume Lyon fit and available.
Let's make also the assumption Lyon not fit and unavailable....then we do need a spinner & the team needs a 5th bowler for balance.
No brainer Moeen gets in, in place of Marsh in this case.
And Lyon gets replaced with Cummins who moves above Broad in batting order

Now there is problem of too much batting flexibility that comes with Moeen.....we can bat him at 3 or 6, depending on what mood Stokes is in and if its a chase then Stokes goes down to 6.

PS* Did anyone notice Moeen was conspicuously silent on announcing his "re-retirement" Very Happy on what should theoretically be his last test match
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Post by VTR Sun 30 Jul 2023, 8:06 pm

I think he is keeping it quiet so that his options are still open. It would look pretty farcical to retire again then make another comeback. So seems the right decision to me not to announce anything definite either way

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Post by msp83 Sun 30 Jul 2023, 8:40 pm

Khawaja
Crawley
Labuschagne
Root
Stokes
Moeen
Carey
Woakes
Starc
Cummins
Broad
Few difficult calls in there. It would be a tough call to get Moeen in as he has not been at his best and has had injury issues throughout. But I hate teams not playing a frontline spin option. Joe Root isn't a frontline spinner, neither is Marnus. Travis Head bowled a few overs to cover for Lyon, but his bowling is quite pedestrian. Murphy, even at this stage of his career that's coming to an end, I surely will pick Mo over him. Or else, you pick Lyon for that one test and a bit he played and drop Cummins and Moeen, and bring Mitch Marsh in.
As for the seam bowling department, Wood had a sensational comeback game and a couple of good spells after that. Cummins likewise, had a fine start to the series and carried the attack alongside Starc in the first 3 games. Also made decisive contributions with the bat. So not much between them, but Cummins has managed to stay on the park for more, besides taking the pressure of leading the side.

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Post by guildfordbat Sun 30 Jul 2023, 11:05 pm

Duty281 wrote:Still a day to go in the series, but BBC readers have put in their team of the series:
...


With this Test and the series still undecided, too early to judge for me. I'll have a bash tomorrow night.

Btw, I wonder if any of the BBC readers chose Foakes for their team. Often said you appear better when not playing.

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Post by alfie Mon 31 Jul 2023, 6:03 am

With a day to go and all results still possible I had better say a couple of things.

Firstly , whatever the outcome on Monday , this has been an excellent series  ; and both teams deserve credit for this. If Australia win I have no doubt Stokes and his men will come in for a lot of criticism - and some will probably use a 1-3 result as evidence that they haven't really improved at all : which I reckon is nonsense. They can't be immune from criticism ; but it seems clear to me that whatever improvements might still be needed  to their methods (and there are certainly things that need fixing by this "work in progress" playing group) they have transformed themselves from the sorry outfit that were slaughtered in Australia and ended up losing to a very poor West Indian team just 16 months ago. And anyone who says they aren't thrilling to watch must just not like cricket.

As for Australia : they have actually come in for criticism here for being overly defensive to the point of being boring - in contrast to their free spirited opponents. Probably some truth in that as some of their play hasn't been what I would call the Australian Way : but they have achieved their first objective in retaining The Ashes , and may yet win the series outright : so winners are grinners , no ?   I do think that although at times they've appeared a bit spooked by England's attacking game , they have stuck resolutely to their plans...which enabled them to win the first two matches  ; although rather letting them down in the next two. One very significant thing is that by batting long rather than fast they have put huge wear into England's bowlers ; and it looks as if that may be the decisive factor on this last day , judging by the rather muted efforts we saw from those bowlers yesterday. Tortoise wins , perhaps ?

I still have hopes for an England win : Warner and Khawaja have to start again ; we have seen collapses over the series  - and indeed swings one day to the next have been the rule rather than the exception ; but I do think 250 runs is looking a little easier than 10 wickets at this point. I just hope if that does happen we don't go overboard rubbishing England for failure . They have gone toe to toe with a very good Australian team (not Hayden Gilchrist Warne McGrath good  ; but still pretty decent !) who are WTC Champions for a reason ; and if they fall short it is still a better effort than anyone could have envisaged even a year ago.

Going to be "last Ashes " for a lot of players on both sides , I suspect. Certainly by the time the next series in England comes around there will be more new faces than existing ones. So I'm giving the players of both sides a bit of a cheer for entertaining us all for a whole five Test Matches - something that can't always be said coming to the final day of action. Crossed fingers for one last day of full blooded competition - and hope the rain doesn't swamp it all again !

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Post by KP_fan Mon 31 Jul 2023, 7:38 am

alfie wrote: but I do think 250 runs is looking a little easier than 10 wickets at this point. I just hope if that does happen we don't go overboard rubbishing England for failure . They have gone toe to toe with a very good Australian team (not Hayden Gilchrist Warne McGrath good  ; but still pretty decent !) who are WTC Champions for a reason ; and if they fall short it is still a better effort than anyone could have envisaged even a year ago.
You sound like setting up a preemptive defense for the failure of Stokes / Eng.
Keep chin-up , Eng are far from losing yet & Eng win+ Draw together still exceeds 50% probability in my view
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Post by alfie Mon 31 Jul 2023, 7:51 am

KP_fan wrote:
alfie wrote: but I do think 250 runs is looking a little easier than 10 wickets at this point. I just hope if that does happen we don't go overboard rubbishing England for failure . They have gone toe to toe with a very good Australian team (not Hayden Gilchrist Warne McGrath good  ; but still pretty decent !) who are WTC Champions for a reason ; and if they fall short it is still a better effort than anyone could have envisaged even a year ago.
You sound like setting up a preemptive defense for the failure of Stokes / Eng.
Keep chin-up , Eng are far from losing yet & Eng win+ Draw together still exceeds 50% probability in my view

Very Happy

Well of course I am defending Stokes & co ( to what I think is a fair , qualified, extent) if they fail to win this one : that was the whole point of my post. Getting it in before everything gets lost in hand wringing & blame allocation (much loved occupations of armchair "experts" ) Smile

As to the actual match I agree all is not yet lost.  Not sure I agree with your assessment of the chances though : if you actually watched yesterday , you'd surely agree the bowling was a little uninspired and both bats looked relatively comfortable ? New day ; but I am not really expecting pitch conditions to be dramatically different (may be wrong there , of course !) so I think England's best chance is to snare a couple of wickets early and then work with the old "scoreboard pressure" to wear Australia down. Certainly possible : first session vital , no ?

Is there really enough rain around to make a draw likely ? Have given up trying to analyse weather forecasts...

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Post by KP_fan Mon 31 Jul 2023, 7:58 am

alfie wrote:
KP_fan wrote:
alfie wrote: but I do think 250 runs is looking a little easier than 10 wickets at this point. I just hope if that does happen we don't go overboard rubbishing England for failure . They have gone toe to toe with a very good Australian team (not Hayden Gilchrist Warne McGrath good  ; but still pretty decent !) who are WTC Champions for a reason ; and if they fall short it is still a better effort than anyone could have envisaged even a year ago.
You sound like setting up a preemptive defense for the failure of Stokes / Eng.
Keep chin-up , Eng are far from losing yet & Eng win+ Draw together still exceeds 50% probability in my view

Very Happy

Well of course I am defending Stokes & co ( to what I think is a fair , qualified, extent) if they fail to win this one : that was the whole point of my post. Getting it in before everything gets lost in hand wringing & blame allocation (much loved occupations of armchair "experts" ) Smile

As to the actual match I agree all is not yet lost.  Not sure I agree with your assessment of the chances though : if you actually watched yesterday , you'd surely agree the bowling was a little uninspired and both bats looked relatively comfortable ? New day ; but I am not really expecting pitch conditions to be dramatically different (may be wrong there , of course !) so I think England's best chance is to snare a couple of wickets early and then work with the old "scoreboard pressure" to wear Australia down. Certainly possible : first session vital , no ?

Is there really enough rain around to make a draw likely ? Have given up trying to analyse weather forecasts...

I watched most part and wrote yesterday that in chase often times the approach of chasing side scales up( or down) to the volume of the total.
There was little pressure in the first 100 odd runs.....one side batted with nothing to lose and the other side bowled...I have a historic total to defend
Chases are 90% about overcoming pressure......and it will play up now that Aussies will realize it's theirs to lose.
And Eng will choke runs to build pressure instead of carefree blast wickets out.
I will be a different game today and Aus might even run out of time if they don't get about 83 overs( 3RPO) and draw will creep in as a realistic possibility



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Post by alfie Mon 31 Jul 2023, 8:12 am

Yeah I accept those points re the shifting nature of pressure : it is the main reason I do maintain some hopes that England can turn this around. The last part of the chase is often the killer - as long as there aren't too many wickets in hand.
Plenty of past examples of teams being 100/0 and all out 250 in similar situations.

However we have seen a few the other way lately , no ? Last year England v India ? 100/0 , 110/3 - and then Root and Bairstow cruised to the win... I think on that occasion India sort of lost belief a little earlier than they should have ; but it was similar in that the pitch was flat and there was plenty of time available.

Keeping things tight will indeed be important today. Might be difficult if the spinners (injury hampered or part time) have to do too much of the bowling. The last period of play yesterday rather failed on that score.

Open mind anyway. Better idea in 3-4 hours , eh ?

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Post by VTR Mon 31 Jul 2023, 8:53 am

Rightly or wrongly, this won't be remembered as an excellent series if it does end up 3- 1 to Australia, not in England anyway! A shame really, I'd definitely put it up there as a series for drama and excitement. I think even at 2-2 it will quickly be forgotten with 1981 and 2005 still the ones that mainly talked about.

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Post by Marky Mon 31 Jul 2023, 9:16 am

VTR wrote:Rightly or wrongly, this won't be remembered as an excellent series if it does end up 3- 1 to Australia, not in England anyway! A shame really, I'd definitely put it up there as a series for drama and excitement. I think even at 2-2 it will quickly be forgotten with 1981 and 2005 still the ones that mainly talked about.

I think the rain in Manchester killed all momentum, would be entirely different if it was 2-2 going into this fifth test.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 31 Jul 2023, 9:37 am

GSC wrote:Carey Bairstow is closer than I would've thought. Don't think Carey's had a vintage series behind the stumps if not as bad as Jonny. And Jonny has far outperformed him with the bat.

I'd like to get Cummins in there, was a force in the first 3 tests even if he's looked out of gas since

Yeah was going to say, Carey really hasn't been very good behind the stumps either - I can think of at least 3 very simple chances shelled off the top of my head, including the Brook one in the first dig here which was very poor. Bairstow's runs would get him in over Carey for me, albeit you're hardly choosing from two at the top of their game for that spot.

As for today...obviously a poor day for England yesterday, and it looks like the pitch has definitely gone dead and got better for batting as the game goes on...but still 250 runs needed, and a fresh start this morning for the Aussies. England will get a 2nd new ball today too, and it looks like overcast conditions are likely throughout the day. Still a fair way to go, albeit I would agree with the consensus here that Aussies are marginal favourites now (as someone who has money on them to win the series, win the series 3-1 and to chase this target down at with £20 on at 5/1, I am at least covered financially if they do!)
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Post by Duty281 Mon 31 Jul 2023, 10:06 am

Weather update - Met Office says a 50% chance of a shower at around 14:00/15:00; BBC agreeing as they say a 60% chance of rain at 15:00. Otherwise dry.

So we should get a result that isn't a draw. Really don't think it'll take Australia longer than 80 overs to get the target if they do chase this down. Might be even sooner if they keep wickets in hand.

Australia are 55-45 favourites for me. England have to get a wicket in this first half-hour to get the game back in the balance. Don't think overcast conditions will matter much as they haven't effected the movement of the ball for much of this test.

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