17 months on from their last winless tour of Australia, England returns, with Ben Stokes captaining the national side, to take on the Aussies in an exciting battle for the Ashes. Having won 10 out of his first 12 Tests in charge, and enjoying a superior record on their home series against the Australians, the England squad will be looking to gain the Ashes for the first time since 2017. Despite the team’s run of poor form, Brendon McCullum is determined to go-ahead with Zak Crawley in the opening slot, taking into account his attacking style of cricket that has accumulated respect from Ricky Ponting.
The oldest and most distinguished rival has further planned a series of five ‘day-matches’ where each day is scheduled to go on for 90 overs until 6pm and with a 40 minute lunch break at 1pm, and a 20 minute tea break at 3.40pm. Sky Sports’ domestic rights will allow them to Stream the five matches Live on both Sky Sports Cricket and Sky Sports Main Event. Meanwhile, the BBC is expected to air highlights of the match every night at 7pm on BBC2 and also provide ball by ball coverage with Radio 5 Live Sports Extra.
To prepare for the Ashes, England are set to take on Ireland in an early June Test match,with Australia having recently playing a series of four tests in India during February and March. Both teams resonate of a great line up of players for this series including Ben Stokes (England), Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Harry Brook, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Foakes, Ollie Robinson, Matthew Potts, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Jack Leach, Rehan Ahmed, Mark Wood, Jofra Archer and Olly Stone from England. From the Australian side, we have Pat Cummins (captain), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey, Mitchell Starc, Scott Boland, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, Mitchell Marsh, Jhey Richardson, Marcus Harris, Matt Renshaw, Peter Handscomb, Hilton Cartwright, Lance Morris, Todd Murphy, Matthew Kuhnemann and Ashton Agar who are all raring up for a great series.
Rob Bagchi opines that the series is expected to be a great one considering England’s aggressive tactics, Australia’s attack, a more durable batch of Dukes ball and a home Ashes swansong for Messrs Broad and Anderson. Mitchell Starc is also impressed by England’s new Test transformation claiming it “probably is not the best time to play them”. With all this anticipation and great line ups, England and Australia are cooked up for a great Test series.