Englandशेस मालिकेच्या शेवटच्या मालिकेत इंग्लंडने ऑस्ट्रेलियाकडे धाव घेतली, अनेक, पाच सामन्यांच्या मालिकेत अभ्यागत कलश टिकवून ठेवतील असा विचार केला. It was always going to a tougher battle than the summer showdown but victory was expected.
इंग्लंडचा खेळाडू इंग्लंड अगदी बळकट होता, ते नव्हते? वेळी, मधल्या फळीतील वादक मायकल क्लार्कचा अपवाद वगळता, दोन्ही बाजूंच्या एकत्रित इलेव्हनवर तीन शेरांचे वर्चस्व राहिले असते. कर्णधार क्लार्क व्यतिरिक्त जो एकत्रित बाजू बनवित असत? मायकेल कार्बेरीसाठी कदाचित डेव्हिड वॉर्नर? ख्रिस ट्रेमलेट किंवा टिम ब्रेस्नन या दोघांमध्ये फिट रायन हॅरिस? नक्कीच माजी, कदाचित नंतरचे. शेन वॉटसनसाठी जागा? शक्य तितक्या लवकर - पण जो जागा घेईल? तो चेहरा, मात्र, England certainly appeared the stronger outfit.
Fast forward a few weeks and the view from the boundary is somewhat different. Australia annihilated and humiliated England in every discipline, outplaying them in every area and keeping their foot on the accelerator throughout the series and into the one day capers. Now forever confined to the history books from that initial starting XI thanks to Australia’s dominance are Kevin Pietersen (निष्ठूरपणे), probably Jonathan Trott (due to other factors for which Australia merely provided the coup de grâce) आणि ग्रॅमी स्वान. England are not going to replace their 13,000 combined runs and Swann’s 250 odd wickets overnight and Australia will no longer have to face any of them when they next lock horns. They didn’t just win an important series they won the psychological battle as well – England were left emotionally scarred and will take time to rebuild and recapture past glories.
Even after the thrashing of England, मात्र, I still thought the performance of the green baggied outfit was a mere flash in the pan. Surely the thrashing was simply down to a tired England side who had only just finished one Ashes series and couldn’t quite motivate themselves for another scrap? Combine that with a few key players out of form or sorts and you have a mere aberration, आपण नाही?
Well the recent events at the SuperSport Park in Centurion in the first test of South Africa v Australia would make it seem I have to eat yet another rather large slice of humble pie. पुन्हा, या सामन्यात आधी, few of the Aussie starting XI would have made it into a combined South Africa / Australia side. The Proteas have been at the top of the world rankings for a while now – and with good reason – they have class running through the entire spine of the side. Graeme Smith sets the standards for others at the top of the order – and Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers follow in style. Jacques Kallis may have departed but talent still remains. They are backed up by a ferocious pace battery. So as good a series as the Aussie top order (Brad Haddin included) had against England and as well as the bowlers bowled they all lack the consistency of the greats mentioned above, ते नाही? Well Australia have simply picked up from where they left off in devastating England. One test in and the great South African side, top of the world rankings, lay in tatters. Of course they could yet turn it around – and if they do then massive credit to them. But the Aussies are in that cocksure position of old. Their tails are up and their confidence there for all to see. They have humiliated their prey and ground it to dust.
हे कुठून आले आहे? On paper Australia lack many world class players – gone are the Warnes, McGraths आणि जगातील Waughs. But that appears not to matter. After a largely quiet few years Australia, तो दिसेल, are roaring back to the top.
They have managed to find a team spirit, unity and bond that appeared somewhat lacking during the nonsense that was ‘homework gate’ and still in short supply during their Ashes battle in the English summer. They play way above the sum of their combined parts. If the combined averages of England (ऍशेस सुरू), Australia and South Africa (या मालिकेतील प्रारंभ) are compared then there is little to choose between them. England average 358, ऑस्ट्रेलिया 374.06 (although this is skewed by debutant Alex Noonan averaging 58 या परीक्षेत पासून. If Shane Watson had been playing in his place then the combined average is 352.39). South Africa’s recent dominance is shown by a slightly higher average of 376.39. But in reality there is little to separate the three.
This upturn in form seems to have coincided with coach Darren Lehmann taking control. He has clearly worked wonders on the team – his long stint as an adopted Yorkshireman has clearly done him the power of good. Team ethic is the most important part of the setup. The players are performing to the absolute maximum of their ability and when it matters. त्यांना चांगले. Questions remain about the age of the side and the youngsters waiting in the wings. But you can only beat what is put in front of you and Australia are most certainly doing that.
Whoever replaces Andy Flower as England supremo should look no further than Lehmann’s example.
हे उपयुक्त सापडले? खाली एक टिप्पणी ड्रॉप करून आम्हाला कळवा कृपया. आपण सदस्यता करू इच्छित असल्यास कृपया वरच्या उजव्या मेनूवर सदस्यता दुवा वापरा. आपण खालील सामाजिक दुवे वापरून आपल्या मित्रांसह शेअर करू शकता. आणि आपण ते करतोय.