Monday, July 5, 2010

England vs. Australia ODI Series

Firstly despite losing the last two matches of the series England have shown that they are now a more than capable one-day format team that has great batting strength down the order, and have a game plan that not only works but suits its bowlers and fielders.

Australia early on have shown that injury to a few key bowlers have left them without any bite with the ball, and having brought in Shaun Tait changed the out look of the series with his instant impact attack with the new ball. Nathan Hauritz for my mind is not a one-day bowler and even his added ability to ‘bat a little’ doesn’t warrant his position in the team, Steve Smith seems like the preferred choice and Hauritz should continue to stay in the Test Side [barring injury] Australia’s batting in the early matches of the series especially at the Rose Bowl lacked any form of aggression seen in the past with M. Hussey and M. Clarke happy to nudge the ball around for too long and in turn left Australia at least 30 runs short of a defendable total.

England on the hand won the series with a line-up built for the shorter form of the game, whether it be 20 overs or 50, the squad is based on strong boundary hitting batsman who look to attack with measured shots and were dominate over Australia’s 2nd class bowling attack. England’s line-up is anchored by a strong opening partnership and is put in place with streaky hitters like Bresnan and Yardy in the middle order to team up with Morgan who proved his worth and ability during the series, taking the role of a Michael Bevan style run chaser. Their bowling attack bowled straight and held good lines for most of the series barring a run explosion from M. Clarke and R. Ponting taking full advantage of a batting wicket at The Oval. The question I have is can England defend a total well enough, and seemed to be under more pressure when batting first rather than the comfort of batting 2nd.

Who has come out on top in the series? Well England, they won 3-2 and were dominate and sharp in the early games where Australia whether the winter lay-off have left some a little rusty or the lack of ‘names’ in the line-up was just used as a chance to blood a couple of hopefuls in Hazelwood and Smith not sure, but this Australian attack didn’t seem to be at its best by a long stretch and England looked all mighty and confident. Has this series given either side the upper hand in the forth coming Ashes Series in Australia, I don’t think it has shown much really, mainly I think due to the fact that Australia have a completely different line-up for Test Cricket with C.White, D. Hussey, Hopes, Tait and Paine are not in the Test side it gives England a different kettle of fish to face in Brisbane come December. As for England can they mimic the 20/20 results into a 5 day game away from home? I’m not so sure and see them losing the last 2 matches as more of downer to the series to them than it was of any pride grabbing from Australia.

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