Ashes summers are always special, particularly when we win. I returned to England for a Summer holiday with the English Cricket Team already in a commanding position against the old rivals. I barely got any information on the Cardiff test whilst exploring the Gorges of the mighty Yangtze. I had the occasional glance at Wimbledon, but it was more or less a surprise, and a pleasant one at that when I got back to London to find that we were set to win. A few hours later and we’d taken the first test. Bravo.
The Lords test beckoned. I like Lords. I like the spaciousness. One day, if I live to be a ripe old age I may even wear an egg and bacon tie, but for now, I can still wear shorts and be the South Londoner that I truly am. What a nightmare the test turned out to be. A good toss to win. We lost. When you only take one wicket in a whole day, you are going to do well to come back. We never even had a look in. I went on the Sunday with Dad. We saw our national team skittled for 103, and lose by a massive 405 runs. A sorry days cricket.
Disheartened. How on earth we managed to claw back with such drive still astounds me. Geoffrey Boycott is right, the Australians were pathetic, but credit where credit is due. Finn, Anderson, Stokes and Broad have all stood up when needed. There have been some overwhelming swing bowling performances. I am already looking forward to the box set. We trounced the Aussies!
The only Australian batsman who really showed any fight was Warner, and look where he has been playing : the English County Circuit. It just shows, local knowledge pays. And so the Ashes were regained some 6 days after the shockingly huge defeat at Lords.