Space For Rent

Space For Rent
Wednesday, August 26, 2015, Bhadra 11, 1422 BS, Zilqad 10, 1436 Hijr

Ashes to dashes as England and Australia fail Test exam
Published :Wednesday, 26 August, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 20

LONDON, AUG 25: One of the charms of Test cricket is that a match scheduled to last five days allows for the possibility of a fightback, even if a team falls behind early on.
It was a charm, however, completely lacking from the 2015 Ashes, which ended with England winning the five-match series 3-2 despite Australia's innings and 46-run win in the concluding Test at The Oval on Sunday.
This Ashes equalled in length the shortest five-Test series of modern times of 18 days that took place when England played the West Indies in 2000.
The fifth day wasn't needed in any of the matches, with the nearest thing to a 'close' contest, England's 169-run win in the series opener in Cardiff. Prior to the series both sides spoke about their intention to play aggressivecricket.
It became such an ingrained mantra, it was almost as if the thought of playing out a maiden filled some batsmen with a sense of dread.
Australia rectified their approach at The Oval, where their opening boundary did not arrive until the 15th over of the match and they still piled up 481, but by then it was too late to save the Ashes.
Arguably the most "unbelievable" aspect of all was Australia's collapse to 60 all out in just 111 balls on the opening morning of the fourth Test at Trent Bridge, with England paceman Stuart Broad taking eight for 15.
The green-tinged pitch at Trent Bridge re-opened the debate about just how much home advantage is acceptable. While the English climate produces surfaces that are generally more conducive to swing and seam bowling than many places elsewhere in the world, there was a feeling following Australia's 405-run win in the second Test on a docile pitch at Lord's of groundsmen being instructed to prepare wickets that aided horizontal movement.
The irony was that it needed an Australian, in new England coach Trevor Bayliss, to point this out.
But while the WACA pitch in Perth may be quicker than many around the world, at least visiting teams know what they are going to get, whereas the suspicion remains that wickets in England can too often be made to order. Unsurprisingly, Bayliss disagreed, pointing out that playing the moving ball was a skill in itself.
But the fact just three of the last 14 completed Test series won by the away team -- Pakistan in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and Australia in the West Indies suggests that an age of ever shorter tours and back-to-back matches is making life harder for visiting sides as never before.
"I think winning away from home for every Test country is the big thing now," said Lehmann.    AFP

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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