2015 Ashes – 5th Test Day 2


Hello.  That was certainly an interesting set of comments we received on day 1. The village idiots turned up, had their say and naffed off. But they seemed to have made an impression on one useful idiot.

I saw little of day 1. I’m so sorry if trying to earn enough to feed my family got in the way. However, from this remote perspective it appeared to be Aussie’s day. No doubt if Smith makes a big one it will be discounted by the cognoscenti.  I find that laughable, especially if Chef makes a big one. We’re watching this double standard nonsense.

Ooooh. Etheridge has slagged me off. I should be ashamed. Of what I don’t know. Here’s the tweet I received close to midnight. Thursdays are always trouble!

People. I’m not ashamed of you. Not at all. Here’s a little thing, though. I do hope this individual is not personally holding himself responsible for the sins of his newspaper and anyone who uses their comment pages. Because that would be funny.

As for me being self-pitying? Whatever. Why you having a pop at little old me? I would encourage you to read the thread between both TLG and I with Etheridge. It is astounding. If you are not used to Twitter, pick out @DmitriOld or @BlueEarthManagement. It’s gob-smacking.

To the cricket. Comments on day 2 below.

Edit- took out the point about drinking. John said he hadn’t. I had been at a leaving do. Happy to point that out.

133 thoughts on “2015 Ashes – 5th Test Day 2

  1. man in a barrel Aug 21, 2015 / 12:21 am

    just to repeat my summing up of today…

    “a solid performance from Australia in English conditions. I think Rogers and Warner will be castigating themselves for not kicking on but they blunted the world-class and world-feared new ball attack. Stokes looked threatening at times but he lost his control of length. Wood, by the end of the day, looked shot. Injury management is key here. Two cortisones at his early age suggests he will not have an ankle joint intact by the time he is 30, a fate I would not wish on even a socialist.”

    I was amused by Agnew on the BBC saying that Clarke was clearly out when there was no visual or audio or hot-spot eveidence and just a thin spike on snikko. Was the umpire using a ouija board to give him out in the first place? Also Agnew seemed determined to talk the England performance up….why should he?

    Seriously, Wood looked very tired at the close of play. Has he been bowled to an early retirement, already? v Stokes seems unable to bowl more than 3 overs without losing rhythm. Finn is a luxury unless you have someone to close off the runs. Ali leaks runs if the batters just wait for his bad balls.

    But Neil Harris and co assure me that this is a great and wonderful team, so I rest assured.


    • Benny Aug 21, 2015 / 12:36 am

      Always been a bit doubtful that you can be given out for sounding like you hit the ball. Hey ho.


    • keyserchris Aug 21, 2015 / 1:00 am

      Stokes needs overs under his belt. Comes at the price of filth, but the flip side is Trent Bridge spells. Wood has an ankle knock. Just should not in a million years have played.

      If they don’t think it’s a Rashid pitch, OK. Don’t necessarily agree. But the same reason Anderson wasn’t risked should have applied to Wood. At least another new seamer would have had some experience.

      In the meantime, the old flaw of selecting a player for the squad for ages without game time (see Bairstow) is being done again to Rashid…


    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 4:32 am


    • Neil Harris (@njhhcricket) Aug 21, 2015 / 12:24 pm

      “But Neil Harris and co assure me that this is a great and wonderful team, so I rest assured.”

      And co. I have a co.

      MIAB – As far as I know I’ve never had a conversation with you, but of course on this anonymous blog you’ve probably got 100 different names.

      For the record, I believe this team is very talented but being young and inexperienced will suffer many ups and downs. Good morning session though eh?


  2. Benny Aug 21, 2015 / 12:34 am

    I’m happy to repeat that a recent Mori poll revealed that the “professions” whom the public trusted least were:

    1. Politicians
    2. Journalists

    So guess what I think of a hack who writes for the Sun?

    Dmitri, I empathise so much with what you write and what cards life deals you. It’s normal tricky life for most normal people. Journalists live in a bubble. No idea what goes on in the real world. I’m happy to bet that my IQ is 10 times that of etheridge, so I treat his pathetic comments with contempt. No I don’t read the dumbed down rag he writes for. Why would I?

    Your writings are honest and sincere. Works for me

    Liked by 1 person

  3. keyserchris Aug 21, 2015 / 12:56 am

    It all smacks of the old “they can dish it out, but they can’t take it” mentality. Journalists are quite happy to dish it out to blogs for being inaccurate (and may often be right), but the protective instinct to save their economic model trumps the truth from their end as well. How often, especially in sports journalism, do we see them admit fault? Sports journalism & the propagation of truth have never been hand in hand. We only have to look at football reporting & the amount of rubbishy transfers that are deffo nailed on that never happen to know this. Journalistic rigour in sports is never never held to the same standard as serious news reporting. If it was, Private Eye would be ten times as thick.

    Given the busted promise by JE to explain the gift story a while back, it is impossible to take him seriously, even when he argues he is not tied into the “stay on the sweet side of the ECB for access” theory. Which I partially believe, on the basis that he is behind a paywall, and he is reporting on cricket for a wider audience than core fans. Still doesn’t mean he can spout rubbish whilst not seeing a clear difference between an article posted online & the comments underneath. That’s internet writing 101. The Sun paywall limits his exposure to this greatly, but it’s still no excuse.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 4:42 am

    Did Etheridge came to this conclussion after the 0-5 Whitewash Down Under?

    John Etheridge ‏@JohnSunCricket · 14. Aug. 
    England outclassed. Aussies showed more nous, skill and athleticism. Eng going backwards with some near-passengers in the team. #womensashes

    John Etheridge ‏@JohnSunCricket 
    A big issue facing women’s cricket is attracting the best female athletes to the game. At the moment, they favour other sports.


  5. alan Aug 21, 2015 / 5:16 am

    For the likes of John Etheridge,Neil Harris and Pam Nash the moral indignation is selective. I’m unaware of their indignation at the arbitrary ending of another cricketing career or the abuse directed at that cricketer by commenters btl
    Nash was unpleasant to me on TFT because I had the temerity to tell her I didn’t follow her twitter feed thus denying her the satisfaction of blocking me. She further informed me that I wasn’t Alan and that she knew who I was
    Obviously it doesn’t matter if you use a pseudonym as she is all knowing. Actually I’ve been Alan for 66 years as far as I’m aware but then she’s never wrong is she?
    For Neil Harris information even an old duffer like me worked out who TLG is by reading yesterday’s twitter exchange. Authors and journalists have used pseudonyms through the centuries. The indignation about it is as real as the pseudonym.
    Just so that I don’t further upset these sensitive souls, I don’t wish injury on any England cricketer whoever they are


  6. Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 5:30 am

    Children, I think we can all learn from the journalistic profession’s noble and not at all self-pitying response to Lord Justice Leveson’s attempt to stop them spreading viciousness, untruths and guesswork. The sort that actually harms lives and fosters prejudice and injustice.


    • escort Aug 21, 2015 / 7:03 am

      Leveson is a joke that all tax payers have paid for.


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 7:25 am

        I’m not here to debate Leveson, and I don’t really have a political agenda here thanks. Every single mention of politics on this blog makes my heart sink. I’m just pointing out that certain people don’t tend to take kindly to (what they perceive as) interlopers trying to police what they say and do. See also Lord Woolf/ICC. Yet they see fit to lecture other groups of far less significance about how they should police themselves. Why even bother, seriously?

        This blog almost certainly represents a minority opinion, quite possibly a single figure minority, and most (including Neil, who re-tweeted the below) are at best complacent about the broader issues most of us are concerned with. I think DO and most contributors have, over the course of 18 months, done a pretty good job of explaining their ambivalence towards England, and some are angrier than others. Big deal. Everyone else is overjoyed about the Ashes win, presumably: why would anyone be fussed about this place?


        • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 7:32 am

          Actually amusing reading all the stuff. Sorry to all you commenters out there for this nonsense. It’s a diversion.

          Amused that one of my detractors is taking the Michael out of me for leaving out a comma between crap and his name. But if the shoe fits.


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 7:47 am

        I think it’s his birthday today, isn’t it? Anyone would think so looking at Twitter. “Stick to the cricket, leave them to the nonsense” while I re-tweet John Etheridge, call you bullies and dance a jig because a journalist is having a pop.

        Incidentally, as I’ve read just about everything that was published on here since February 2014, I would be surprised if MIAB wished ill on Wood and Anderson in the way some people on Twitter have wished Ebola on Jonathan Agnew or Piers Morgan. I read it as a deeply angry comment on the ECB’s management of injuries and overburdening of players. I would never have written it myself, but then if you want to do a number on somebody, taking their words out of context without addressing what drove them to write it is straight from Hatchet Job 101, I suppose.

        We’re pretty accustomed to being conflated with genuinely horrible people here. Should have thought the strapline made that obvious.


      • escort Aug 21, 2015 / 9:07 am

        You mentioned him! (leveson).


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 9:23 am

        Only as an example of an unwelcome attempt to police something, and one particularly relevant to JE’s profession. I did my best to avoid making a political statement out of it. I don’t think anyone can reasonably argue that the free, self-regulating press hasn’t harmed lives, regardless of their view on any potential solution, or to what extent they regard “free” and “self-regulating” as contributory factors.


      • Ian Aug 21, 2015 / 4:07 pm

        The guy who wrote that tweet is a grown man who likes wrestling so must enjoy the pantomime that is cricket administration.


      • man in a barrel Aug 22, 2015 / 12:13 am

        To avoid doubt, I think it appalling to risk destroying a player’s body for short term advantage. Of course Wood wants to play. He iz


  7. Sean B Aug 21, 2015 / 7:17 am

    Wow, have just read the exchange, seriously I’m gobsmacked. JE has shown all of the dismissive and arrogant traits of the horrendous rag he works.

    I can’t get over the arrogance of the man (and I really couldn’t give a shit if Neil Harris adds his ‘they’re all bad, I’m great, I’ve been saying it for years piece’ as the man is an idiot) but for a MSM journalist to go so blatantly on the attack, shows this is no longer about cricket, but all about the personal agenda’s of the establishment.

    I am apoplectically angry that just because I don’t buy the bullshit of the ECB, don’t hang on the every word of its Stalinist media and don’t buy into the fact that Alastair Cook is the new messiah, that I’m being cast as not just outside cricket but instead as some kind of pond life.

    John Etheridge take your gutter opinion and the filthy racist rag you work on and kindly do one for good.

    Rant over.

    Liked by 1 person

    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:51 am

      Especially the unsubstantiated untruths and malicious claims that a certain John Etheridge HIMSELF has posted here and on HDWLIA. So, the blog gets criticised by John Etheridge, because John Etheridge refuses to do his job. Does not say much of his journalistic integrity though.

      He has had, what? About 15 months or so to substantiate his claims with regards to the Pietersen gift story, and he is still expertly weaseling his way out of actually answering the relevant questions.


      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 9:12 am

        The Murdoch press’s response to the phone hacking inquiry was particularly hypocritical. Having denounced the criminal justice system for decades as “too soft and prison too easy” when suddenly confronted with the possibility some of them might end up in said institutions they complained that it was so unfair. Being woken up at 5am in the morning by police in front of their family’s was just not right.

        A particular favourite of mine was how many of them used the European human rights act as a defence. These are the same people who had denounced that piece of legislation for years as a criminals charter.

        And they want to lecture about shame?

        Perhaps Mr Etheridge would like to tell us how many cricketers phones he was encouraged to hack? I am sure a good up standing man like John did not hack any phones. But Seeing as he wants to play the “guilt by association” card. I would have thought working for that particular organisation would make him wary of of going down that road.


  8. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 7:30 am

    “No doubt if Smith makes a big one it will be discounted by the cognoscenti. I find that laughable, especially if Chef makes a big one. We’re watching this double standard nonsense”.

    A fine collection of nonsense about Smith on the link:

    He averages 40+ everywhere he’s played – but I suppose two poor matches count for more in some minds.


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:57 am

      Do notice that Steven Smith has played as many Tests in England (12) as he has in Australia (12). And only 9 outside of Australia and England. Fair scheduling that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:23 pm

        Let’s not forget that Smith’s average in England is down due to 2 Tests against Pakistan (100 runs at 25; Cook in the same year managed to get his runs against Pakistan at 23 – and yes opening the batting is hard, but batting at 8 or 9 does not do a batsman justice either).

        So his stats are not any worse than say Bell. While admittedly Smith will never bat in May, Smith will also not receive the bowling from say India in August.

        I would have expected better from Boycott. Not so much that he would not pick holes in Smith’s technique, I would have thought he’d do the same with the likes of Cook, Lyth, and co. I mean, it is not like Cook, Lyth or Buttler set the series alight with their exquisite batting.

        Flintoff averages more as a captain in the Ashes than Cook. Need I say more?

        At this point I refuse to entertain any positive expectations about the writings and musings of Ed Smith.


      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:25 pm

        That was meant as a reply to Arron of course.


    • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 8:13 am

      Smith seems a particular target for the…… “Cook is a God ” brigade.

      Swann was on 5 live yesterday ,and boasting he has been proved right in saying that Smith can’t play in English conditions………… “I have been proved right.”….. Said the charmless one…….. “Cardiff, Birmingham, and Nottingham are English conditions.”

      So Lords and The Oval are not English conditions according to Charlie Chaplin. Apparanntly if the ball does not seam round corners this is not English conditions. No wonder the head of the ECB is championing 4 day cricket. England will now produce pitches so it can all be done and dusted in 3 days.

      Liked by 1 person

      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 8:43 am

        Let’s just look at Smith’s average in England. At the moment Smith averages 42.28. Not great, but not disastrous either. And some of those games he played at #8 or lower, so if we just limit ourselves to batting in the top 6, his average is 46.35 (19 innings), or 58.38 (15 innings) in the top 5.

        Admittedly, he is no Bradman (102.84), Graeme Smith (67.75), Border (65.06), Sutcliffe (64.60) or Greenidge (56.07) (to pick a few random names.

        Compare that to Pietersen (52.75), Trott (49.82) and Bell (48.64). That is a reasonable comparison, since these three are all middle order players. Smith is not doing significantly worse as a middle order player.

        Trescothick, Pietersen and Root (for the time being at least) are the only England players who achieved an average of 50 or better in England since Barrington retired.

        The anointed one averages 43.33 in England. Clearly can’t bat either. At home, he does not even average 30 against Australia, and barely 40 against Pakistan and South Africa, teams with you know an actual pace attacks to exploit the conditions in England. And even that Pakistan stat relies heavily on the 2006 series (57.57), because he was dismal for most part in the 2010 series (23.85).


      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 9:26 am

        I think it’s the fact that Smith has become number 1 in the world that has made them quite un hinged. I don’t know why. There is no doubt he has issues with his feet movement that makes him vulnerable to the moving ball. Perhaps they don’t think a player with a major fault should be called number 1. Who knows?

        One of the things I hate about the whole last 18 months is the petty jingoistic nature cricket has now taken. I grew up admiring cricketers from all over the world. I loved watching Viv Richards bat. I once went to a Sunday league game just to see him play for Somerset, and he came in at the non strikers end and was run out without facing a ball. I was pissed off I can tell you. The only reason I paid my entrance fee was to see him bat.

        But now a sort of football supporting knuckle dragging seems to have taken over where overseas players must be attacked, and English players must be elevated to a status that is pure fantasy. It’s fantastic when we produce great players but don’t pretend they are great just because they are English.

        This no doubt will be further evidence of treason in the eyes of our flag waving obsessed followers.

        Liked by 2 people

      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 11:28 am

        Incidentally, Root’s away average is 43.00. He has played 2/3rds (21 out of 32) at home. And yet the Anti-Smtih brigade criticises Smith for averaging 42 in England. Somehow I think averaging 42 in England is slightly more impressive than averaging 27.42 in Australia or 17.60 in New Zealand.


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 7:10 pm

        D’Arthez: in a twenty-minute spell after lunch, Geoff Boycott and Ed Smith did little other than pick holes in Steven Smith’s batting, even as he was out there with a hundred to his name. They ended up talking about great players with major statistical anomalies, such as Warne in India. Funnily enough they never got round to that English batsman with a 27.56 average in his most prestigious series.


      • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 7:32 pm

        Update on the tiny tiny blot:


        By my (dubious) reckoning, Cook can’t fall below Butcher and would have to score 41 in the second innings to go above Brearley. Lyth would have to score something like 140 to move above Cook.


      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:46 pm

        You’re right Simon. He will stay ahead of Butcher, even if Cook gets a duck.


        However, if he gets a duck, he’ll average less in the Ashes as a captain as a certain Colin Cowdrey ( and he needs 1 to equal Cowdrey). And the ones he is ahead of, are not exactly household names either. He needs to get 51 (or 23*) or better to edge in front of Flintoff. And I don’t think Flintoff played as a pure batsman either …


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 7:53 pm

        Of course, he also needs 50 to equal the total number of half centuries by Australian no.9 Mitchell Starc in this series…



  9. Rohan Aug 21, 2015 / 7:51 am

    They are really upset aren’t they! Those inside cricket, those who are blinkered and those, like the tweet above, who ‘just don’t care’ about bigger issues, really wanted this to be an untainted celebration of England’s greatest team, run by Cook.

    The fact that the DOAG protest took place, the fact that folk on here have a different view, the fact that there are a lot of other voices out there who do not agree with the false narrative spun by the ECB and MSM really irks them, doesn’t it. I think they realise those ‘outside cricket’ are of a greater number than they thought. Places like here and TFT reinforce this and highlight it time and time again and they don’t like it. They certainly don’t like it spoiling their party! Long live Cook…….

    Really wanted Clarke to do well, thought the guard of honour was a great gesture from England. The decision, however, I thought was poor and the noise on snicko was very small. It could have been a coincidence, easily caused by something else.

    Smith batted well, he has had some horrors this series, but he has also had a very good knock and a few useful others. Let’s see where he goes after this before casting aspersions about being found out etc. or being the greatest! The captaincy will probably decide which way he goes……


  10. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 8:54 am

    Test in Colombo still nicely poised – India all out for a brisk 400-odd and SL just cleared 50 for the loss of Karunaratne.

    Sanga going well….


    • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 9:58 am

      …. until he has just been caught (very well – Rahane again) at slip off Ashwin for 32.

      Acute disappointment somewhat tempered by the probability that he’d gloved a hook in the preceding over and the umpire hadn’t given it.


  11. Andy Aug 21, 2015 / 10:04 am

    What I find amazing is the MSM/insiders desire to keep coming back and reading blogs and comments just to insult and denigrate the ‘outsiders’.

    There is no attempt to justify their pieces / stats / biases, its just ‘you think differently, therefore you are awful’. They throw insults and yet keep coming back for more – seemingly just to slag off people who are still cricket/england fans.

    Whereas when people here have commented BTL on their articles, asking questions, pointing out actual stats and info or presenting a different view, it leads to moderation or shouting down, here we just get called names and insulted – by those who profess to be above us…

    as professionals the MSM seem very bad at conveying messages or supporting their statements. (there are some exceptions).

    I don’t fully agree with what everyone here says all the time, but I do sway more to the feelings presented here. I often don’t have as much time to compose comments, or replies as I would like (and if I’m honest I couldn’t write half as eloquently as a good number of authors and commenters here (and at TFT).

    Sometimes I wonder if I’m just a bit naive or uneducated, or just not bothered by somethings or just don’t read as much into some statements or ‘facts’, being too trusting. Sometimes I see things differently, or read something and think ‘does anyone else think “this”‘.

    I feel that I can put a thought here (or the TFT) and it will be discussed, considered, I might come away better educated about a situation.

    Often I do not feel educated by reading the MSM.

    They don’t need to read blogs, but we do still need to read some MSM to be able to actually tease out the facts and truths from the hatchet press releases they often present as ‘writing’

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 10:28 am

      Andy you make an excellent point. There are many sites on the Internet that I don’t agree with, and I simply don’t go there, and I certainly would not bother writing on said sites.

      There do seem to be some people who just can’t deal with an alternative opinion and cant leave it alone. This site has certian views, and if people don’t like it well there are more than enough publications that provide “conventional wisdom” for them to enjoy. Most of the MSM parrot their views. Why they have to demand every thing be the same I don’t know? They are modern Henry Fords…..”any colour you like as long as it is black.”

      Most of us found our way here because we didn’t agree with the MSM, and ECB narrative and there was little or no alternative in said MSM coverage. So we reside here. This seems to annoy some people. It annoyed the same people that Pieres Morgan, who had 4 million followers, had a platform that they did not agree with, but worse, could not control.

      We have been shunted out of the MSM by the MSM. They don’t provide what we want so we come here.


      • Zephirine Aug 21, 2015 / 11:45 am

        Excellent points, Andy and Mark. I don’t get it either.

        Why go to all the trouble of visiting a blog where you know you won’t agree with the people there, in order to say that you don’t agree with them and therefore they are very bad people?

        Surely it would be more fun to go and chat at a blog where more people agree with you and you feel at home?

        All this does, however, confirm my opinion that Twitter is an invention of the devil.


        • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 1:49 pm

          Wise words re Twitter, zeph. This has been a cause of many of the flare ups and I maybe need to rethink my usage.

          BTW I have instituted limited pre moderation on here so if your post doesn’t come up immediately then don’t worry. I hope it is temporary.


    • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 11:16 am

      Good piece Arron.

      I had not heard Harrison speak before, and he was a giant let down. I’m not sure there is any point in him and Graves taking over from Giles Clarke. They all sound the same.

      Harrison ….” Not everyone is going to agree with this but I think it’s “laudable” that the country that generates the most money (India) gets the most money.”

      And there was I thinking it was all about how good you are that really matters in cricket. Wickets, runs catches are all secondry to who generates the most money. Sell a few more corprate boxes, rather than come up with a new leg spinner.

      This is the Premiership model of sport. The more money you have, the more you can spend. It’s the free market see. Except even in the land of the free, America, they have realised that this model is a disaster for creating competive sport. So they intervene to ensure more completive teams.

      No wonder Sky is on board with this model. The Premiership has been their golden egg.

      Harrison also claimed that this new model meant that the non big 3 would get more money than before, so everyone is a winner. I do not know if this is true, but it might explain why the boards of these county’s have been so meek and mild about accepting their fate. They may get more money but they are going to get less cricket against the big boys. Which in turn will mean a slow decline in their form. But this does not matter because the big 3 will be winning all the time and that will generate more money. The more India win, the more money we all get.

      Might as well hand them them the trophy now, as money is the only arbiter of what constitutes victory.


      • Larry David Niven Aug 21, 2015 / 1:22 pm

        Quite. The only time for socialism is in competitive sport to ensure a fair contest.


      • Rohan Aug 21, 2015 / 7:20 pm

        Mark I agree about them all being the same! I read that article on TFT and thought Harrison sounded just like Clarke……

        Or maybe Harrison and Graves are being ‘scripted’ by Clarke, that could well have been what happened with the Graves and KP stuff. Clarke didn’t like Graves opening the door for KP and, behind the scenes, made sure that at the right moment it was rudely slammed in his face. We have not really heard from Graves since.

        Harrison only really appears to utter Clarkesque administrator waffle, then again, according to Clarke why should the supporters worry about those who run the game…….


  12. dlpthomas Aug 21, 2015 / 10:49 am

    So when the ball is not swinging / seaming, what is Plan B?


    • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 10:57 am

      Broady starts whacking it in half-way down.


      Liked by 1 person

      • dlpthomas Aug 21, 2015 / 11:03 am

        Well isn’t my face red


  13. escort Aug 21, 2015 / 11:06 am

    WTF!!! that was a massive no-ball from Finn


    • SteveT Aug 21, 2015 / 11:11 am

      That was Mohammed Amir territory!!!


      • escort Aug 21, 2015 / 11:15 am

        What happened to the umpire?


    • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 11:15 am

      Begs the question (yet again) of how many are being missed. Terrible consequence of the over-reliance on technology imo. Totally with Agnew: he should never shut up about this. Been watching the 2005 Ashes DVD and there are regularly a double figure number of no-balls in an innings. Farcical situation really.

      Liked by 1 person

    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 11:56 am

      John Etheridge JohnSunCricket

      Finn said the other day that the position of his leg in his delivery obscures the umpire’s view of the line. So no-balls difficult to spot.

      11:09 a.m. – 21 August 2015


  14. LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 11:09 am

    Sad, but not unexpected announcement of Chris Tremlett’s retirement from cricket. He was a monster on that Ashes tour. A great memory of him.

    Best wishes going forward to him.


    • Ian Aug 21, 2015 / 11:38 am

      Sad day. Tremlett is about a year younger than me and he was the first cricketer of my age group to break into the Hampshire team so it really meant something to me to see him do well. People forget he was in every 2005 Ashes squad until the Oval when they went for Collingwood instead. So again when he finally got an Ashes chance in 10/11 I was delighted.


      • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 1:25 pm

        Oops – sorry, I hadn’t noticed you’d already posted about this here when I commented further down.


  15. Boz Aug 21, 2015 / 11:15 am

    Regarding Etheridge, I found this funny and pertinent:


    as I have said many times on here, Etheridge is pissing on this blog, that’s how professional he is and clearly indicates why he makes his laughable income working (if you can call it that ) for the sun … I could use stronger language as the man is unforgivably crass


    • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 11:41 am

      Every time I consider whether to make myself more open I have exchanges like that and it puts me off. I don’t like things like last night though I admit the person who started it was me.

      Life’s rarely neat packaged boxes. What I said in anger and after a cracking night out, I wish I had some of it back now. But that’s life.


  16. d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 11:36 am

    Finn gets his 100th wicket at an average of 29.14. Mitchell Marsh gone, Australia 343/5. Smith still there at 97*.

    A healthy position for Australia, but they need to add some more runs.


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 11:45 am

      Smith gets to his hundred. 3 Ashes hundreds in England for Smith. 0 for Alastair Cook. Not bad for a batsman who can’t bat.


  17. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 12:07 pm

    Seemed like a great legside catch by Buttler standing up.


    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 12:26 pm

      A reminder what stress high performance professional sport excerts on the body.(And therefor how much care needs to be taken). Good luck for the future Chris!


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 1:06 pm

      Pity it had to end this way for Chris Tremlett. All the best in whatever you choose to pursue next Chris!


  18. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 1:17 pm

    I wonder what Rashid is thinking right now…


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 1:24 pm

      My guess it would be something along the lines of:

      “10 or 11 right handers in the Pakistan lineup. I am sure I won’t be picked. Monty was not picked for the first Test in the UAE. Monty was not picked for the first Test in India. So, when I make my debut, with England probably 1-0 down, and needing to win the series, there will be a lot of pressure on me. Why could I not get a few games in against lesser opposition?”


  19. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 1:29 pm

    100 up for Starc! (44 – oops 48!)


    • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 1:40 pm

      Something you have got to admire with this Aussie lot. They do scrap in matches like this. It’s inevitable there is a drop off in intensity from England. But Aussie don’t appear to have given up.


  20. d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 1:40 pm

    Smith gone for 143, after an entertaining 15.2 over run-a-ball partnership with Starc.

    467/8 now.


  21. Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 2:27 pm

    Just like to,say how much I enjoyed the lunch time TMS with Michael Atherton and Gideon Haigh talking with Aggers. They were promoting a book about the Ashes and cricket writers at the Times.

    We criticise the media and journalists quite a lot, and It’s nice to listen to two really good ones. There is so much rubbish churned out by the usual suspects that it is a pleasure to listen to two people who you don’t feel are “on message” all the time.

    What is interesting is that one is a former player and Test captain, the other is not. Yet they bring their own perspective to their writing. Atherton was saying how ex players should take it seriously if they move into the media. To understand that it is a skill to be learned and not just take the money. He is both a very good writer and broadcaster. Not always the case.

    Anyway, they probably couldn’t give a shit what I think but I enjoyed it. It’s a pity there are not more like them.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 2:55 pm

      Agreed. Was disappointed when the cricket started, and Agnew announced the first commentator.


  22. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 2:42 pm

    Chef gone for a half a century (or 22 for you and me)


    • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 2:43 pm

      Doesn’t count – he wasn’t bowled.

      “He was bowled”.

      Doesn’t count – the stumps weren’t uprooted.


      Liked by 1 person

    • SteveT Aug 21, 2015 / 2:47 pm

      Good ball that nailed him, but he was stuck on the crease again.


    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 3:03 pm

      “Football explains the point more easily. Imagine playing alongside Diego Maradona at his best. Suddenly there’ll be open spaces for you to pass, run and generally appear better than you are. That is because the opposition will naturally and rightly be worrying about Maradona”

      So there is an I in Team?


      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 3:17 pm

        As if he has any idea what it’s like to play football with or against Maradona.

        He was on about the tortoise and the hare last week. Next week it will be how the film The planet of the apes can make you a better captain if you follow the words of Charton Heston.


    • Zephirine Aug 21, 2015 / 3:04 pm

      One of the US universities used to have a Random Academic Sentence generator on their website. It doesn’t seem to be there any more, I reckon Ed ‘Word’ Smith has used it so much it wore out.

      Liked by 1 person

    • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 3:09 pm

      A more pleasing narrative momentum. It’s like Sir Stanley Unwin has been v reincarnated.


    • Boz Aug 21, 2015 / 3:10 pm

      I rather like this:

      The team’s performance is not, in reality, the sum of individual performances. The combination of individual performances, as Stefan Szymanski points out in his book Money and Football, is “multiplicative rather than additive”.

      god, I feel better now


      • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 3:19 pm

        Is this all contrived to say cook’s runs are worth more than anyone else’s?

        I can’t read this. I’m doubting my sanity as it is. ….

        Liked by 1 person

      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 4:03 pm

        It’s all about Cook, and how wrong we all were……

        “Cook himself deserves great credit, but there is a danger of overplaying the theory that England’s renaissance is explained by changes in his captaincy style. Cook, naturally, will find himself under enormous pressure to acquiesce with that narrative, as it offers his critics an elegant escape route.”

        Apparantly we need an escape route. Actually we just needed to produce pitches that take seam bowling. A point completely lost on Smith.

        “Implicit is the following logic: “You say you’ve changed, I say you’re now great, and everyone looks good, right?”

        Smith is now very worried that the improvement has come because Cook has been forced to change. That implies Cook was wrong to start with and was forced to bow to his critics. We can’t have that. It goes against the man of Steel narrative.


    • alan Aug 21, 2015 / 3:12 pm

      Presumably that quote is not an example of ‘unflashiness’, defined by the Oxford dictionary as ‘not seeking attention through being ostentatiously impressive’


    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 3:15 pm

      “One Ashes anecdote is subtly revealing. It shows the unflashy reality about turning teams around. When England returned to the pavilion after defeat at Lord’s – with the press turning on them, the series in the balance, its momentum horribly reversed – Trevor Bayliss was not found standing on a chair shouting at everyone.”

      Dmitri, I wont mention who this reflects on…..


      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 3:23 pm

        He really is The Karl Pilkington of English cricket writers.


      • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 3:31 pm

        “England’s Ashes triumph deserves to become a management school classic.”

        No it doesn’t. Creating pitches that seam around is what is required.

        “First, hold your nerve against critics (the senior experts almost universally advocated sacking Alastair Cook). Second, don’t believe the polls (which suggested Kevin Pietersen’s return would be popular and beneficial). Finally, look for lots of incremental improvements rather than one big, quick fix.”

        If you’re playing Ed Smith bingo you have probably got a full house there.


  23. Sean B Aug 21, 2015 / 3:03 pm

    Penny for thoughts of Adil Rashid at this moment?


    • Boz Aug 21, 2015 / 3:11 pm

      “I was a regular cricketer with a regular match to play before England picked me …. haven’t played since …. ho fucki’ hum”


  24. SteveT Aug 21, 2015 / 3:25 pm

    Lyth gone for 19, innocuous half tracker spooned to mid-on. Oh dear. Not a glut of openers knocking at the door is there.


    • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 3:54 pm

      Hales is currently 186*.


      • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 3:56 pm

        I’ll say it. Hope I’m proved wrong. He’s not a test opener. He seems a #6 to me.


      • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 5:50 pm

        I’m not entirely convinced either – but needs must and if he comes off it’ll be spectacular.


  25. pktroll (@pktroll) Aug 21, 2015 / 4:21 pm

    Siddle bowls a good ball to get Bell. However the latter was really rather caught on his crease with the bat coming down at an angle.

    As I type Root is being reviewed for a nick behind and I think there has been a little nick though it didn’t look obvious either live or by initial replay. He has now been given out. It was a similar situation to Clarke.


    • BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 4:25 pm


  26. Phil Aug 21, 2015 / 4:41 pm

    England’s results are becoming less of a trend and more of a pattern. Play on pitches which seam and swing, win handily, play on a batting pitch, get thrashed. This ashes win will paper over the cracks just like the last one, and our batting failures will be ignored again. I’ve no doubt that they will change Lyth for another bunny for Cook to fail with, and Bell will hang on too, like a bad smell only performing just before he is dropped. Broad will bowl amazingly once every five tests or so, Wood and Finn will be bowled to injury and poor Rachid will carry the drinks until he has forgotten how to bowl. Anderson in the UAE? What’s the point? Give him a rest. Wasn’t expecting to rant so much, but the train is crowded, and the cricket is shit.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Ian Aug 21, 2015 / 4:45 pm

    Buttler gone now. You would hope this likely defeat will be a wake up call that all is not well with England but I expect it will brushed under the carpet.


    • OscarDaBosca Aug 21, 2015 / 5:18 pm

      Following this from Southern Italy, I am a) not surprised that John Etheridge read a different set of comments to those that I read. He works for a dispicable paper which prints lies on the front page and retractions hidden on page 7 b) not surprised that Pam Nash came on, made some ridiculous aligations and when faced with a defence disappeared. For the record Pam if your reading, Oscar Da Bosca was my cats name when I first started commenting on the Guardian (about 97-98), my real name is Andy Cronk (@andycronk on Twitter) you’re welcome to send your hate filled bile at me if you wish.

      Secondly, oh what a surprise a good batting pitch (from what I read), a big first innings total by the opposition and we collapse again. It would appear if Joe Root fails so do England, still I am sure Cook is captaining the dressing room brilliantly and it is a dead rubber, and the UAE is so far away and not the Ashes, so who gives a fuck eh!

      Liked by 1 person

  28. jomesy Aug 21, 2015 / 4:50 pm

    I think I’m right in saying Clarke has never enforced the follow on. Could Smith hand back the captaincy for, oooh say ten seconds, to give him the pleasure in his final Test?


    • pktroll (@pktroll) Aug 21, 2015 / 4:58 pm

      Australia could bowl England out by the close and rest up and enforce the follow on tomorrow. They have hardly had much of a work out although perhaps Clarke might want a final knock for posterity’s sake.


      • jomesy Aug 21, 2015 / 5:14 pm

        To end on a nice little red inker??


      • pktroll (@pktroll) Aug 21, 2015 / 5:20 pm

        Maybe Jomesy. Seriously with such a lead I do not know why they would not want to enforce the follow on should England be bowled out by this evening and even early tomorrow.


  29. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 5:11 pm


    Emotionally it feels like more though.


  30. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 5:11 pm

    Ed Smith – Ex-England batsman on BBC Test Match Special

    “What’s happening out there? This is extraordinary Test cricket.”


  31. BoerInAustria Aug 21, 2015 / 5:13 pm

    Chef currently top score!


      • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 7:04 pm

        Also, according to the Guardian OBO, his only Test innings at faster than a run a ball.


      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:13 pm

        Yup. He has 3 innings at a SR of 100 (3 vs SA in 2012 at Lord’s , 15 vs Australia at Perth in 2006, and 4 at Kandy in 2007). So they got that right. Surprisingly his fastest 50 (51 from 64) came in Melbourne 2013. A tour that has not happened according to the ECB. His fastest ton was 109* (from 156 balls) in the fourth innings in Dhaka in 2010.


  32. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 5:36 pm

    The stats at the end of this series are going to look 2009-esque.


  33. northernlight71 Aug 21, 2015 / 5:44 pm

    I only have one thing to say.

    I have never given John Etheridge any respect on this blog because of the newspaper he works for. I have no interest in his opinions, I distrust his motives, I wonder at the conflict of interest which pertains to him as an employee of the same nasty corporation which owns Sky TV, and I think anyone who would take a living from an example of the worst excesses of prurience, double standards, outright lies and law breaking which exist under the cover of “journalism” needs to take a long hard look at themselves before they accuse others of being nasty, vitriolic or insincere.

    I’d feel pride if he blocked me on Twitter, if he talked down to me or if he in any way suggested that anything he knew about me upset or offended him.

    He is the opposite of what a decent journalist could and should always be.

    Liked by 1 person

    • escort Aug 21, 2015 / 8:16 pm

      For somebody with only one thing to say that is quite a big rant

      Liked by 1 person

      • northernlight71 Aug 21, 2015 / 8:55 pm

        Ok. One BIG thing to say. Full of lots of little things.


  34. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 5:54 pm

    There was a danger a proper Test match might break out earlier today – but normal service has been resumed.


  35. Sean B Aug 21, 2015 / 6:01 pm

    Top shithousery from England today towards the MSM and Harris/Nash clique today.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 6:46 pm

    I had to go for a function, but it seems like the ECB XI put up a real case why they should be #1 after the tour of South Africa.

    Oh, when will the press learn to not run ahead of themsleves too much?


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 6:49 pm

      So 5 Ashes Tests, all of which have basically been decided within 2 days, barring extreme weather.



  37. SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 7:34 pm

    I was expecting the usual special-pleading nonsense from Selvey but instead he sounds right angry.

    Almost like he’s had to delete the lengthy and finely-honed 4-1 victory article he had prepared.


    • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:36 pm

      He probably had to. It can be frustrating when you turn up to hand in your work, beer in hand, only to discover there was an unforeseen stuff-up, by the lowly grunts, who are responsible for providing you the datums for your eloquent report.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 7:44 pm

      Bloody kpateldf24 is doing his “Johnson got a couple of tail-enders out” routine again! What is it with these people?


      • d'Arthez Aug 21, 2015 / 7:53 pm

        I don’t know, but maybe ask the guy since when does the England tail start at #5 again?


  38. Andy Aug 21, 2015 / 7:53 pm

    So… Wasn’t it yesterday or the day before that the BBC & guardian(? Any others?) That had articles stating ‘this is how we get to be #1 in the world’…

    Not looking so good making that sort of statement now it feels!


    • SimonH Aug 21, 2015 / 8:04 pm

      Also not good for Pringle who’ll need 6 from 7.


  39. Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 8:01 pm

    I am glad to see Peter Miller calling this series for what it is on Twitter.

    “Terrible series”

    “Like the fight at the end of Rocky III”

    People slag off 2013, but four matches were competitive and two settled by the lowest runs margins in Ashes Tests since 2005. England conceded a first innings lead four times out of five and still won 3-0, ffs.

    Let’s face it, as sporting 3-2s go, this ain’t Brazil v Italy 1982 now is it?


    • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 8:07 pm

      I see concerned of Harris is now taking to putting MiaB comment on twitter. Must be terrible for him that more hits and visitors and followers have ensued.


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 8:12 pm

        Without the context of ECB injury management, of course.


        • LordCanisLupus Aug 21, 2015 / 8:16 pm

          I am incredibly angry with him at this point. I know my conduct last night wasn’t my best. I admit that. But this is the dripping poison I allude to. Because I mention Wood in a post but not Anderson it means I agree with him being terminally injured. Oh please. That’s nonsense.

          I’m not starting Jimmy’s fan club but I don’t wish that on anyone. That’s dense.


      • Arron Wright Aug 21, 2015 / 10:16 pm

        They never comment on the injury stuff in KP’s book. They share that trait with most of the MSM.


      • escort Aug 21, 2015 / 10:29 pm

        MiaB wrote that crass comment so let him defend it.


      • thelegglance Aug 21, 2015 / 10:56 pm

        As I keep saying, within the legal boundaries, people can say what they want. They can then defend, or not, what they say. This is not complicated. We have to defend and back up our posts, so does everyone who comments. We’re all responsible for our own actions.


    • Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 8:24 pm

      “Terrible series”

      How dare he. Did he not get the memo from Harrison? It’s all about the loot. We won the ashes. We won the fucking ashes. That all that matters.


      • Sean B Aug 21, 2015 / 9:15 pm

        Neil’s just trying to deflect attention as always and selectively choose comments that he feels can support his personal agenda. It’s pretty sad really but when you have spent your whole Twitter life demonising people on here and on TFT, that you have to take one comment and use it to tar the brush of everyone. I would recommend that he is just ignored (though he’ll probably come and comment on here again when he realises he is getting no attention again)


  40. Mark Aug 21, 2015 / 8:39 pm

    Before anything is said about this test match you have to put the disclaimer that this is a dead test match rubber. England are going to be de mob happy.

    Having said that, there were some appalling shots played by England batsman today. Also Cooks decision to put them in is looking even more odd. Would he have done this if the Ashes was still alive? Had the score been 2-1 would Cook have really put them in, and risked what has happened.

    Alex Stewart apparamtly said yesterday that it was a bat first pitch. Mark Butcher who also knows the Oval said you think about putting them in and then you bat. Boycott has been saying all,day that it was the wrong descion. Remeber this is one of the greatest captain of all time. See Ed Smiths guff today about Mr Cook.

    I have said all along that England on flatter pitches are not great. When it seams about they are competitive. Why this is so difficult for the Cook mania people to understand I don’t know.They so want to believe the fairy story they have been sold. It’s quite sad really.


    • hatmallet Aug 21, 2015 / 9:02 pm

      Clarke said he would have bowled as well. Though that may also have been a poor decision.


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