Good morning, afternoon, evening everyone,
Wherever you land in the Ashes divide, yesterday was nothing short of visceral. A day of explosion and drama, unevenly distributed. After rolling England for 147 on a green one with cloud overhead, it feels much of Australia already senses a drubbing in the offing. Of course, this is how we do things here, building then riding the wave momentum – slightly confected – feeding the stereotype of a snarling Australian unit manhandling a feeble England outfit on a dangerous Gabba wicket. All of a sudden, the omission of Anderson and Broad is conflated with a poor batting display – all of it endemic of a touring party for whom “the wheels have fallen off”. And so on.
All of this before England has had a chance to bowl. Ultimately, Australia assuredly exploited some favourable conditions yesterday, and England will have its chance today. The series is essentially two sessions old, and chest-out Australians are only ever a problem or two away from trouble. All eyes will be on Woakes and Robinson, the favoured seam-up metronomes who’ll be counted on to match the unerring lines, lengths and angles of Cummins and Starc. For all the noise and pageantry yesterday, it was the relentlessness of the skipper and former vice that wrought the damage. Should Woakes and Robinson be able to do similar, with catches held, England will wrestle their way back in. No doubt Australia will be brighter and bolder with the bat, so the margins already feel small.
I’ve not done this round for a little while, so be gentle. Would love your thoughts, contributions and threats at email@example.com, or on the Twitter machine @sjjperry.
Going to grab some news on the weather, it appears … sunny.