Ashes 2017: The Ultimate Test
One of the biggest rivalry of cricket world is just a few days away, yes you heard it right The Ashes is here. Those who don’t know what is Ashes, The Ashes is a series of Test matches played between England and Australia and this name Ashes has a history of over 120 years, this name was given the title during the 1882-83 series held in Australia but it has evolved in series played in England in same year when Australia won their first match on English soil and after that a famous Newspaper quoted a statement: The English Cricket has died and the Ashes are to be taken to Australia, this eventually ignited the English team when they went to Australia for return series which they won and were presented a “Urn” that indicated the Ashes taken back to England, it eventually became the title for all the series and also the Urn is not a trophy but is presented to the winning team as a mark of remembrence. In total, till now both the teams have won 132 series each and 5 series have been drawn and the most recent series was won by England 3-2, way back in 2015 in their home conditions. The series will be played between 23 November 2017 to 8 January 2018, also it will be first series for both Steven Smith and Joe Root as Captains. This series will be played across 5 traditional venues of Australia, starting in Brisbane on 23rd November, the series will head further to Adelaide for the first ever Day/Night Ashes Test and it will begin on 2nd December, this series will also witness, WACA Ground in Perth, hosting it’s last and final Test before opening of the new Perth Stadium, this series will also feature traditional Boxing Day Test in Melbourne and New Year’s Test in Sydney.
The series will be brodcasted by Nine Network in Australia and by BT Sports in United Kingdom and Sony SIX will brodcast this mega series in India.
Talking about the squad both the teams look well setteled on top and in bowling department but concerns are over their middle-order, both the teams have tried a bunch of players in the middle-order but are still in confusion whom to play.
England pitched in a good squad but due to injuries and Stokes controversy they lost some good players. But their performance in the 3- practice games have been above average despite injuries mid-way during the games. Their is only one concern that is over Stokes, his fate is still unknown and it is highly unlikely that he will feature in the first two Test’s of the series, as he has not flown with team to Australia. In a recent development James Anderson has been appointed vice-captain of the side in place of Stokes who is unavailable at the moment.
From( Joe Root(c), James Anderson(vc), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow(wk), Jake Ball, Gary Ballance, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Mason Crane, Tom Curran, Ben Foakes(wk2), George Garton, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Mark Stoneman, Chris Woakes, James Vince)
Australia delayed their sqaud and announced it on 17 November, and they shocked everyone by leaving Matt Renshaw and Maxwell out of the squad and also gave Tim Paine a call-up after 7 years as the wicket-keeper and further emphaisized on performance based selection, this squad is for first two matches. Just before announcement of squad Coulter-Nile was sidelined due to a career- threatening back injury.
From( Steven Smith(c), David Warner(vc), Cameron Bancroft, Jackson Bird, Pat Cummins, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazelwood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Tim Paine(wk), Chadd Sayers, Mitchell Starc.
Further this Tour will include 5 ODI’s against Australia, followed by a first ever Triangular T-20 Series between England, Australia and New Zealand, whose Final will be played in Auckland, New Zealand.
We recently contacted a former County Player Mr. Nathan Wood, for his thoughts on The Ashes, he quoted that it will be difficult for England without Ben Stokes and Australia are the favourites for the series if Ben do not feature. Nathan Wood