The Ashes at Adelaide: Days 3 and 4
Days 3 and 4
[Image: Buttler takes a second excellent catch on Day 4. The source is a cropped frame from the Cricket Australia highlights of day 4, listed in sources below.]
Publication date: 2021-12-19
Even a poor cricket analyst could see what was likely to happen on day 4 at the close of day 3. 450+ run lead declared to give Aus 10 odd overs at England before the night session. That would take a 90 run first session and then some aggressive batting (going "the tonk") early in the second. This is exactly what happened.
However, credit must be paid to England's efforts in the field during the first session and a half. Wickets were taken, though the runs could not be prevented. Eng's keeper Buttler dropped another catch, but took two difficult chances. It was not a winning effort because that was neigh impossible based on the position that Aus had placed itself in. Nonetheless, it was energetic and forced Aus to bat deep into their order to achieve the desired lead. There will be gnashing of teeth, but it was a creditable effort in the field, and the problems had been created during days one to three. Eng, having lost the toss, where strategically outplayed by a better team over those days. Day 4 was Aus pouring the concrete into steel re-inforced foundations.
Equivalent to the post-day 3 analysis, is what will happen on day 5. If Eng can preserve all wickets during the first session, they have a slim hope. But, they're 4 down, still 386 behind, and the new ball will arrive early in the second session. The situation is grim for Eng. Aus will win somewhere between the mid-second and mid-third sessions unless a procession of miracles occur.
For Eng Malan has been great, and Robinson too. Their captain, Root, is a great batsman, but cannot carry the whole 11. Their star bowler, Anderson, has has been economical but not penetrating. Too much of a "mixed bag" to get on top of Aus in Aus.
Have a look at the batting and bowling statistics to see how dominant Aus have been so far this Ashes series. Eng's team selection at the 'Gabba to bank on this Test seems to be haunting them, and if they fall to 2-0 down on day 5, it is an almost impossible climb to take the last 3 matches and regain the trophy. Ashes protocol is that in a drawn series, the trophy holder retains it. It is a trophy that must be won. Melbourne can be unpredictable, and Hobart may suit Eng, but I'd bank Aus to take Sydney, at least. And that is the series done.
It was great to see the new Aus bowlers, Richardson and Neser get among the wickets today. Gods' willing, Cummins will return for Melbourne, with Sydney following that. It looks like a romp; 4-1 if Eng win in Hobart, or another 5-0.
Series in England seem to wander more erratically, while those in Australia seem to follow a predictable script following a visitors defeat in Brisbane. Whatever comes, I wish the people of Hobart all the joy of hosting a long awaited Test match, and the Eng team the best of luck there. It will be the first Ashes Test hosted in Tasmania.
Ashes Daily - Adelaide Day 3, Lemon and Collins, The Final Word, 2021-12-18
Grandstand at Stumps: Adelaide Day 3, Grandstand, ABC, 2021-12-18
England slump to ‘most disappointing day of the series’, Test Match Special, BBC, 2021-12-18
Starc, Lyon lead Aussie dominance with the ball, Cricket Australia, 2021-12-18
Starc outplays Buttler with perfect set-up, Cricket Australia, 2021-12-18
Batting display 'frustrating and disappointing': Malan, Cricket Australia, 2021-12-18
Pink ball more white than red: Starc, Cricket Australia, 2021-12-18
England facing defeat after bruising day in Adelaide, Test Match Special, BBC, 2021-12-19
ABC Grandstand? Nope.
The Final Word? Nope.
(Sunday challenges in Australia, it seems).
Jhye shines before Starc lands ultimate blow, Cricket Australia, 2021-12-19
Post match press conferences? Nope.
This is the age of the death of the adverb. For too long have I heard youtubers and twitch streamers abusing the English language, but now it comes from the Beeb herself on Test Match Special of all things, and by Jonathan Agnew who I know knows better. The vortex is catching even the trained:
As "Aggers" is speaking of Robinson changing from seam to off-spin bowling, he reflects on those past who possessed multiple bowling skills. In refering to Tony Greig, he declares, and I quote ():
"Tony Greig was a decent [pause], and ya know, he bowled quite quick, almost cutters really ..."
Apart from being a garbled statement, "quick" is an adjective. The relevant English term to qualify the verb "bowled" is ‘quickly’. Hey, Aggers, remedy this revulsion, rapidly.
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