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Sight Screen

Monday, September 12, 2005

Hoo, boy...

It's finally over -- and I'm kind of learning to breathe again. Maybe England needs to name more young boys 'Michael' -- you of course noticed that the last three times England has won the Ashes, its captain has been a Mike -- Brearley, Gatting, now Vaughan.

Atherton spoilt the run a bit, but hey -- three out of four ain't bad.

I thought, at first, of doing a round up of heroes -- on both sides -- immediately after the last ball was bowled; on second thoughts, I think I will wait a day at least for this whole thing to settle down, for the mind to wrap around the enormity of what has just been accomplished (in England, there is an entire generation that has not witnessed its national team anything but humiliated by the traditional rivals).

So... an Ashes take, this time tomorrow. In the interim, the PM and his entourage are due here in 24 hours and there are some accreditation formalities to go through, which necessitates a trip to the UN.

Will go get that done, and be back in about 3 hours -- at which point, blog resumes, with updates on the upcoming India-Zimbabwe game; the Ashes round up much later in te evening.

See you folks later, got to get my pic taken, credentials made out, and all the rest of that good stuff.


  • What a series prem! I, like you, am glad it's finally over. Can get back to other things in life..

    On a lighter side, will it be too harsh if I said Warne dropped the Ashes? That catch was a dolly.

    In my opinion, it was a Flintoff Vs Warne show (though not against each other). The difference in the sides was that Flintoff had better support...

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 14:09  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 14:09  

  • The link cricinfo on the quotes speical They said what is funny, not to the guys who said it though


    The best one has to be Jeff thomson

    "England will lose the five-Test series 3-0 and the margin will be worse for them if it doesn't rain. If you put the players from Australia and England up against each other it is embarrassing. There is no contest between them on an individual or team basis."

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 14:15  

  • and don't forget, cricket makes you sexy.


    Time to put on my whites when I go to the nightclub next week..

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 14:19  

  • Saurabh, agreed...AF vs SW...and Flintoff had better support(he didn't even need to run through the Aus side ever). While Warne had to often toil from the 15th over of the match :-)..sometimes due to Eng good fortune with the toss...and sometimes due to Ponting's dislike of Warne bowling on last day ;-)

    On Warne dropping the catch...well...again...why do we have to remember the last mistake, the last heroism(in giving Pieterson the MoM) etc? There were many other such moments which could have changed the game...

    And Eng heroes of the series....the bowling quartet of Eng....Freddie in batting
    Aus heroes...Warne..umm..Langer maybe.

    By Blogger worma, at 14:19  

  • Prem: As you round up the heroes (and maybe zeroes) of this series, would you take some time to ponder on what 2/3 things should the Aus selections/management try to do? A wholesale purge or a slow replacement? Boon is already on record for the second approach. I am curious how you would respond if you were an Aus selector.

    On an unrelated, but important note, I did send in a Thank You note to Mr. Mehra. He was so polite in his response that it was humbling (I was more surprised that he actually replied - but after I read the note realized this person is a genuine gentleman and an arednt cricket fan!). Pray fervently that he succeeds in his efforts. Please keep us posted as and when you hear more. Thanks.

    By Blogger saum, at 14:32  

  • Saurabh: I remember your one comment at the start of the Ashes series on this blog (paraphrased here) - Don't know if Eng will win the Ashes or not, but the way they have prepared for it over the past 2 years makes them serious contendors.

    At the start of the series I was in the camp 'is Eng really that good? or is it mostly hype.. after all their run of success has come against weaker teams like WI'. When I read your comment (and found out that you are based in the UK), I made a mental note to check how they perform. Happy to say that I am now clearly in the 'Eng are a much improved side' camp. Their meticulous planning and excellent execution right through out the series has been a treat to watch. Thanks for your inputs throughout the series.

    By Blogger saum, at 14:38  

  • Guys check this out :

    Austrlian players received a death threat via e-mail.

    By Blogger ClannZú, at 14:42  

  • I am saddened to see England win. Note that I am not saddened to see Australia lose.

    I think England truly played like a team with a motivation and a goal. The individual gems from various players aside, the team put on a show that deserved a victory.

    Australia on the other hand, may have to stare and reflect on what just happened. Just like you say there is an entire generation in England that has not seen this, there is also an entire generation in Australia that has grown accustomed to destroying England. To have gone there with a dream of another 5-0 and to come back 1-2 after winning the first test, is quite a deflation.

    And with McGrath and Warne getting close to the end of their careers, Australia better start searching their pockets. England will solidify their position at #2 in the rankings. India will be stuck at #3, and it does not look like beating Zimbabwe is going to change much in that department.

    By Blogger RPM, at 14:53  

  • Finally the series is over. I would like to see how pakistan handles them. I would root for the pakis and feel they have in them to get england on the mat....let us see

    By Blogger tombaan, at 14:56  

  • And the most enduring image of the series for me would be Freddie…steaming away, sometimes alone, till the end of the day 5. And Warne…almost demanding a wicket through sheer will-power, sometimes, ironically, in the beginning of day 1!

    By Blogger worma, at 15:06  

  • Guys,.. Has anyone looked at Times of India?? http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/msid-1228580,curpg-1,fright-0,right-0.cms

    Basically saying suggesting that the tri-series in Zim has been fixed... Interesting when you read on that some players from all three teams have been involved. Hmm.. not sure about this article or match fixing because the best side - ie NZ won the tournament and anyone with hand on heart would say that. Maybe Prem knows a thing or two on this or does any one else??

    By Blogger Harsha, at 15:25  

  • uh huh!.....Here we go again! If this is confirmed this is going to put me off Indian cricket for another extended period of time

    By Blogger ilovecricket, at 15:54  

  • ilovecricket...hold on..this is TOI remember...and who's gonna pay our team to loose anyway ;-)

    By Blogger worma, at 16:03  

  • they are showing the highlights of the whole Ashes series in Sky sports now. still fascinating to watch...

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 16:13  

  • Looking at the wickets Giles took at key moments of the games, I still feel the aussies lost the Ashes because of the lack of the 5th bowler.

    Can you imagine what it would have been if McGill would have been in the side today...

    By Blogger Saurabh Wahi, at 16:18  

  • Saurabh, Aus lost the ashes mainly because of their poor first innings batting. Martin, Gilchrist, and Hayden played too bad. They have been the main difference makers for them in the last few years and they did nothing here. Had Aus batted better in the first innings they would have easily won test# 2 and 4. In my opinion, the lack of 5th bowler wasn't a very big deal - Eng were decent in the first innings and atrocious in their 2nds. Warne was really enough to win this series for Aus had they batted a bit better. A 5th bowler, for the most part, probably would have gone underbowled anyway.

    By Blogger Miyazaki, at 16:32  

  • Worma..true...true...TOI - Tabloid of India...

    By Blogger ilovecricket, at 17:10  

  • saurabh wahi: "Can you imagine what it would have been if McGill would have been in the side today... "

    sighs. had similar feelings too.Australia would have won. Those 2 dropped catches. Ponting is a disgrace. Should be shot dead.

    But anyway, today is a sad day. A day for mourning. The body of Australian cricket has been cremeted and bought to England.

    By Blogger From the great Waugh to the fucker called Ponting, at 17:39  

  • true that aus inability to stitch a decent opening partnership contributed towards their defeat. it is also true that before the advent of langer/hayden combo they used to suffer such opening collapse inspite of which they used to post big scores and win the match. the difference here was that the middle order could not standup and deliver consistently.
    it is not possible that all the batsmen went off color at teh same time. i beleive the conditions along with bowlers who knew how to exploit it caused their downfall.

    Inspite of this a word of caution. sure eng won the ashes, but it has to be put in context that it was a home game for them. the crowd got behind eng like never before. it remains to be seen how they play the aussies down under. if they can repeat this performance in aus, then and only then can this be seen as a true change of guard. till then this performance is the similar to when aussies came undone in india in 01.

    By Blogger JD, at 17:54  

  • Saum and Prem, yes - Rahul replied to my support email as well. Would really want him to succeed and make BCCI "professional" (in the true sense of the word!)

    By Blogger Anand K, at 18:04  

  • The biggest disappointment for Aus has to Adam Gilchrist's batting. Case in point, 1st innings of the 2nd test match - Gilchrist was 49 not out at the end of Aus innings, he was clearly pretty comfortable out there but didn't bother to protect the tailenders at all. I was surprised at how casually he was taking a single in the beginning of the overs and let the tailenders face the music most of the time. As we all know, Aus ultimately lost the test by 2 runs and Gilly's sheer stupidity in not managing the strikes and speeding up the scoring was baffling to me. Was it plain arrogance or just indifference? I am disappointed in the batsman who has been my favourite last few years. Even though the Eng bowling attack was pretty decent, Aus should still have come away 3-1.

    By Blogger Miyazaki, at 18:25  

  • Prem....about the India preview....here is a typical funny yet clue-ridden article from our dear friend Sahi from Telegraph. It says that Yuv is likely to get the nod ahead of Kaif! Also some other team mechanics. Balaji seems to be having some injury, Bhajji and Agarkar fighting for a spot. The unsaid fact seems to be that Khan, Pathan and Kumble are sure starters? (unless Balaji is made to risk an injury in a Zim game, highly unlikely)

    By Blogger worma, at 18:43  

  • Miyazaki - Aussie batsmen rarely shield tailenders. Steve Waugh would never say no to a single just because Gillespie was at the other end. Its their philosophy - the bowlers are also expected to contribute with the bat.

    By Blogger NB, at 19:23  

  • Can't wait for the DVD of this series!

    I suppose things are looking ominous for Australia with the Super Series being about a month away, as it should theoretically be tougher. I say theoretically because I'm not too happy with the selections they have made, going back to that 'style over substance' debate.

    But looking ahead, Australia plays West Indies in November at home. I'm not sure what the word is on the WI contract disputes now, but it should be an easier series for them. It is the perfect opportunity for them to blood some new players. I wouldn't be surprised to see Haddin selected to the squad as a backup Wicket Keeper-Batsman (all though it would be a little unfair to not give Gilchrist another chance after just one bad series). I think Hussey will definately replace Hayden in at least one match. Most importantly, Australia needs to start a serious hunt for some new pace bowlers.

    Anyone know if we can get the Super Series in the US or on streaming video?

    By Blogger Sidhant, at 19:44  

  • *sigh* If LP Sahi is to be believed, and recent "reports" from him seem to suggest he is; then I shudder about the Indian "think tank".

    Why on earth can AK and HS not play together? What is wrong with playing to our strength - spin? And why is YS ahead of Kaif in the middle-order sweepstakes? Is GC grooming MK to replace Dravid and YS to replace the captain?

    If this is indeed how it plays out, then I do not see any difference between Wright and GC's tenure.

    By Blogger Jaunty Quicksand, at 02:25  

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