Posted by: tootingtrumpet | December 26, 2010

Fourth Ashes Test Day One – The Final Over of the Day

Ball One 11.42pm – KP joins Colly in dropping Watson early on. The oldest cliche in cricket is that “catches win matches” – but no less true for it. Swanny failed to catch Hussey first ball in Brisbane and Hussey cashed in with 195. Watson couldn’t pull off the same trick, having got an absolute snorter from the impressive Tremlett. Part One of Strauss’ plan on inserting Aus completed.

Ball Two 11.59pm – There was much levity in Australia prompted by The Guardian’s mid-Perth Test poll asking if this is the worst Australian team in living memory. But there is something in that, notwithstanding results. Watching Hughes’ absurd technique and Punter’s panicky run to get off the mark, allied to the absence of a spinner worth picking, speak of a team winning despite themselves rather than because of themselves. This Australia team are not impressive, especially in comparison to those that have gone before.

Ball Three 12.30am – It is really very hard indeed to take Philip Hughes seriously as a Test cricketer – dangerous to say with a second innings to come, but really. How can a technique as poor as that have survived the fabled hard school of Grade cricket, never mind Shield cricket’s finishing school?

Ball Four 12.51am – Bowling captains should get three referrals and batsmen only one. Bowlers are backing their opinions against the umpires, but batsmen almost always know if they’ve edged on to the pad for an LBW and often if they’ve been hit in line too. Bowling referrals are much harder to manage than batting referrals and the system is yet another innovation loading up the advantage to the bat over the ball.

Ball Five 1.24am – The press, and the players too, have to talk about something between Tests and much of what’s spoken about concerns momentum. But momentum is balls really isn’t it?

Ball Six 2.11am – Bresnan is a better bowler than he is given credit for, not far off Ryan Harris’ pace and just as accurate. But his greatest strength is his ability to bowl as part of a partnership, something Steven Finn has failed to do for all his wicket-taking and potential. His captain will have asked Bresnan to keep it tight and steal a wicket – he did that and pleased both his captain and his fellow pacers bowling so beautifully at the other end.

The Tooting Trumpet, whom you can often find at and on Twitter at @garynaylor999 and @Fakeadil.



  1. Geez Toots l hope you stayed up to see this – memorable score-card for you mob. Enjoy it!

    Too good, way too good. Shocking stuff from the Aussies, perhaps the moment needed by the selectors to really start turning to a more long term development view of the side.

    Anderson bowled beautifully to pick up some/more thoroughly deserved wickets, Tremlett is a real talent, Bresnan was tight and responsible. Impressive stuff. Tremlett ahead of Finn permanently while Finn learns more? Broad needed with the bat? Good problems.

    Only two small silver linings. l may finally get to see Khawaja get his baggy green – Far ahead of Hughes and Smith in technique and temperament. And we doubled our bet on England after being paid out early early in the Perth test.

    • I’m afraid I didn’t stay up once the rain came Japal, but your summary pretty much says it all. England did bowl wonderfully well, as they have for much of this series, but Aus just didn’t look like they had the will or technique to grind it out. Finn is probably a better bowler than Tremlett in English conditions and is very young, but, as you say, what problems to have! Aus? Time to start again probably, with Khawaja not the only new Baggy Green coming up I expect.

      Of course, it’s not all over, but Aus will need to bat two days+ to save this and they look a long way off that.

      I hope Aus cricketing hierarchy are as clear-eyed and honest as you Japal.

      • Yeah well it’s always easier from the/my cheap seats of course.

  2. England too good Toots. Enjoy it.

    I said this after day one at Perth and it seemed to work:~)

    But seriously, Englands good bowling was assisted by some extremely poor shots from the usual suspects.

    Ball 3 – Hughes has gone away and learned nothing, time for him to go away again. Bring in Cosgrove for Sydney, he has the talent, maybe he will be inspired to take the next step.

    Khawaja for Clarke to boot & Punter gets a farewell test. Shuffle the bowlers again.

    Agree on ball 4 but I’d increase the number of referrals to 5 bowling 3 batting per day, can’t see the harm.

    • Lev – Punter definitely deserves a final Test.

      I had a four and a half hour journey due to striking tube drivers and no trains so reflected on referrals and I tend to agree with one proviso – if the bowlers can’t get through 30 overs in a session, they should lose a referral.

      I’ve seen all the wickets now and some of the shots were abject.

  3. That was awful, dire, horrid, beyond immediate analysis. Even a decent and in form Australian team would have a battle against this composed and talented English side. But still.

    However I am conjuring up ways we can squeeze a draw out of this game.

    • Bat 7 and a half sessions Pete, but that means two days batting in the second dig. Having said that, England managed it in Brisbane.

  4. l thought Eng ‘wasted’ the Hughes off the hip referral – Prior is a bit keen. Cook was really clear it didn’t hit.

    l reckon the Huss one was fair enough given context but l don’t reckon they would have gone for it if it was anyone else. Looked high straight away.

    • Huss doesn’t leave many that aren’t high – not in Aus anyway. Worth a shout though.

  5. Waited 4 matches for a decent opening stand on day 1.

    Are there 92,000 English in Melbourne? They should help twist the knife by all turning up on day 2.

  6. Please check out the blogging competition (blog World Cup 2011) at Sportskeeda .. there is a wonderful panel and a blackberry phone up for grab

  7. I hope Australia don’t decide to get rid of Hughes for this… Michael Hill is still 2 years from being ready

  8. “But momentum is balls really isn’t it?”

    Coulsn’t agree more. There’s something to be said for it within a game, though it pretty much equates to confidence in many ways, but I don’t think there’s any case for it carrying between games.

    • it seems whichever team’s winning has momemtum, so it’s just a stalking horse for winning, useless idea really

  9. Oh, and I think your point on referrals is a good one. A nascent version of that thought occurred to me this morning ith teh Cook decision. Like you say, a batsmanshould know one way or another if he’s had a shocker, and that’s what they should be therefore. Speculative referrals are the one thing that need to be phased out, and I think your method may well be a move towards that.

    • Apologies for the awful state of that post, I have a cold. Edited version:

      Oh, and I think your point on referrals is a good one. A nascent version of that thought occurred to me this morning with the Cook decision. Like you say, a batsman should know one way or another if he’s had a shocker, and that’s what they should be there for. Speculative referrals are the one thing that need to be phased out, and I think your method may well be a move towards that.

  10. percinho – cold or not, it’s always a pleasure to have you here at 99.94.

  11. Ball 5, Momentum,

    Momentum is totally over rated in my view.

    Australia had the momentum after Headingley in 09. What did they do? They picked the same winning side that won at Headingley and as a result, went to the Oval with the wrong team and lost the Ashes.

    In my view they have made the same mistake here. Momentum, has caused them to stick with a winning team, they got away with the Smith gamble in Perth, but not here (so far).

    I think Smith batting at 6, had a major influence on Strauss’ decision to bowl first. A decison that has probably just kept him the Ashes.

    Momentum probably could be a good thing, but only if you use it properly.

  12. What a fightback! That’s’what you get with Ricky in charge. Take that, retirement advisors!
    Oz, you wont get a better man to lead Australia than Ricky now. Dont do unto him what panicky sub-continental selectors do.
    Well, i do think Ricky wont give the selectors a chance – by winning this series.
    Easy doozy really – restrict England to less than 300 lead(how many of you bet against that now?), socre big in 3rd inns – and with Ricky due a big score, who will bet against that. As for the 4th inns, England have been consistently sh*t under pressure even in this series. There will be only one winner in a scrap – and that will be the team led by the leading mongrel-minded fighter in Cricket today -Ricky Thomas Ponting. Hubris? No, just common sense.

    • Knock knock
      Who’s there?
      Olivia who?
      Olivia, so get out my house!

      I think my joke is better!

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