Can Australia really win the Ashes?

aggregated drupe Roar Pro

By aggregated drupe, aggregated drupe is a Roar Pro

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    Australian team members. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith)

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    All of the current Tests, one-day internationals and Twenty20 internationals are just the lead up to the greatest cricket series in the world, the Ashes.

    Right now England look the favourites with their settled line-up and world-class captain, Alastair Cook. To have any chance of winning Australia will have to not let Cook get truly away.

    The first thing we need to get right is a settled squad that will be able to perform in England. I believe we need six pace bowlers, two spin bowlers, two wicketkeepers and seven batsmen in a 17-man squad.

    First come the openers. There are three main contenders for these two spots (assuming Phil Hughes stays at 3), those being: Shane Watson, Ed Cowan and David Warner.

    I believe that Warner is a must; he has refined his technique to suit the five-day game and he is now much more consistent and one of our finest batsmen. This leaves the other spot for one of Watson or Cowan.

    When Cowan first came on to the scene he was touted as a great partner for the explosive Warner, having an extremely defensive game himself. He is an old-fashioned opener taking the shine off the new ball.

    To me he has only looked the real deal when trying to attack the bad balls as well as defending. He was notably attacking when he scored his only Test century against South Africa.

    I believe that Warner should be partnered with Watson. Watson is an experienced player and has played much better when in his favoured opening spot. His average is better than Cowan’s at Test and first-class level. Yes, he gets injured, but he has stopped bowling now and that will help.

    Now for the three and four spots which are between Phil Hughes, Usman Khawaja, and Michael Clarke. I believe that Clarke should be at five so more about him later.

    Hughes is my number three. He has refined his technique and is now much more capable on the on side. He has had a great summer and being young is going to be one of our most important batters in the future.

    The same goes for Khawaja; he can really knuckle down and work for runs as he showed against Tasmania earlier this summer. He is one of our most impressive young batters and has worked on his fielding and running between wickets.

    The contenders for numbers five and six are Clarke, David Hussey, George Bailey and Glenn Maxwell.

    Clarke is the definite number five because he is Michael Clarke.

    Maxwell is probably our best all rounder at the moment (Shane Watson has stooped bowling), but all rounders are a luxury and the question needs to be asked, are you one of the best six batsmen or best four bowlers in the country? For Maxwell the answer is no, so he is out.

    David Hussey is one of the most unlucky cricketers in Australia. He should have been put in when the legends retired, in my opinion. He is now in the twilight of his career and averaging 17 this season, so probably doesn’t deserve to be picked.

    That means that the number six spot goes to Bailey. He is Australia’s Twenty20 captain (although he doesn’t deserve to be) and is a regular face in the Australian limited overs camp. He is our most impressive middle order batsmen at the moment and deserves to be a Test player.

    The wicket keeping spot goes to Matt Wade. His keeping has been criticised but Haddin’s isn’t much better. He is also an outstanding batsmen and probably deserves to be there on that alone.

    My three pace bowlers are Pattinson, Siddle and Bird.

    Siddle is the leader of the attack and is the second name on the team-sheet. He has been consistently successful and is a menacing bowler.

    Pattinson swings the ball late at an outstanding pace and is scary to face. He will only improve and will be one of the best bowlers in the world when he is older. He just has to get over his injury worries.

    Bird has only played two Tests but was great in both. He is not as fat as the others but continuously puts the ball in the right spot and troubles the batsmen.

    The spin spot has to go to Nathan Lyon. Being South Australian he is one of my favourite players. Everyone looks for him to rip through teams like Warne but no one will ever be as good as Warne was.

    Lyon has a very good record and I don’t see what the fuss about him is. He will have a good Indian series.

    This leaves me with this squad:


    Doolan/Burns (depending on form)

    Do you fellow Roarers agree?

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    The Crowd Says (121)

    • January 23rd 2013 @ 3:47am
      Johnno said | January 23rd 2013 @ 3:47am | ! Report

      You nailed it, you roar rookie. But there is one man who will not bow down to the selectors it;s not his nature., but he will do everything to impress them.

      Yes you guessed it Brad Hodge, he is seriously considering coming back to shield cricket inspired by his big bash form.

      I’d love to see Brad Hodge 38 yrs of age but still full of energy, be the rock of this aussy team’s top 6. And he has the potential to be. A classy Big bash series just complete.

      -A double hundred then amazingly dropped for scoring after scoring a double hundred. 6 tests with an average of 55.88, Hodge big bash form was outstanding give Brad Hodge a run,.

      Bailey I don’t have much confidence in. I think Andrew Mcdonald is injured and not sur eif he will be fit for the tour. A fit Andrew Mcdonald i would bring in at no 6. A better batter now, and he really ties an end up well and can take wickets.

      Watto won’t bowl anymore, and think he should be moved to opener. He naturally bats well as an opener. He did well vs Flintoff , and Stuart Broad and Anderson in 2009, making useful 50’s, and eyeing of the new ball.

      • January 23rd 2013 @ 5:39am
        Red Kev said | January 23rd 2013 @ 5:39am | ! Report

        Hodge hasn’t played first class cricket since 2009 – hit and giggle BBL does not make you ready for test matches. It is just plain arrogant for him to talk about being in the Ashes squad and ridiculous for anyone to think he is deserving of selection. Hodge was certainly dealt with poorly in his time, but he is no longer a relevant factor.

        • January 23rd 2013 @ 7:03am
          Atawhai Drive said | January 23rd 2013 @ 7:03am | ! Report

          Hodge’s ‘comeback’ seems inexplicable.

          Does he really think he can be a contender again? If so, he may be as deluded as Shane Warne, who also floated the possibility of a return to Test cricket (and who was taken seriously in some quarters). Hodge appears to be setting himself up for another round of disappointment.

          Or is he? Venturing into the outer reaches of conspiracy theory, has he been tipped the wink by the selectors and told to put himself back in the frame with some runs in the Shield?

          A nation waits . . .

          • Roar Guru

            January 23rd 2013 @ 1:41pm
            sheek said | January 23rd 2013 @ 1:41pm | ! Report


            There is one reason why a return to test ranks by Hodge isn’t completely crazy.

            And that’s the lack of depth in Australian first class cricket. Although I doubt it will have much legs, just like the Warne suggestion.

            It was precisely the same with Warne. If he made himself available for test selection, he would bowl the pants of Lyon & every other spinner in Australia.

            This is why we can crazily talk about Hodge, or previously Warne. It’s a sad indictment on the standard of Australian first class cricket.

            • January 23rd 2013 @ 1:44pm
              Red Kev said | January 23rd 2013 @ 1:44pm | ! Report

              I’m not sure they could at that age sheek. I think bowling 4 overs in the BBL is a long way from bowling a 10 over spell in a test match and fielding in the heat of the day. Warnie retired from long form cricket in 2007, Hodge in 2009 – they wouldn’t have the endurance (mental or physical) to compete in my opinion.

      • January 23rd 2013 @ 10:18am
        Jake said | January 23rd 2013 @ 10:18am | ! Report

        Bringing Siddle & Pattinsons waist line in to the calculations was a bit out there by the author…….

        • January 23rd 2013 @ 10:59am
          rl said | January 23rd 2013 @ 10:59am | ! Report

          Bird is deceptively fat…

          • January 23rd 2013 @ 11:56am
            Red Kev said | January 23rd 2013 @ 11:56am | ! Report

            It took me a while to notice the typo you two are talking about, and now it is funny.

            • January 23rd 2013 @ 12:17pm
              Mango Jack said | January 23rd 2013 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

              Took me a little while to work that out as well. I was wondering how a bloke gets fat eating only bird seed.

              • January 23rd 2013 @ 1:02pm
                jameswm said | January 23rd 2013 @ 1:02pm | ! Report

                …and not drinking!

      • January 23rd 2013 @ 6:35pm
        Sunil said | January 23rd 2013 @ 6:35pm | ! Report

        Fantastic article and I really like the team listed, uzi will be very important in the ashes as he handles swing bowling well something which is in high demand right now

    • Roar Guru

      January 23rd 2013 @ 6:04am
      peeeko said | January 23rd 2013 @ 6:04am | ! Report

      i think we need a better number 6 then Bailey, not sure who though?

    • Roar Guru

      January 23rd 2013 @ 7:21am
      Rabbitz said | January 23rd 2013 @ 7:21am | ! Report

      Regardless of the squad, if the English can swing the ball more than an inch (in their parlance) then it is all over for Australia.

      Oh and if they need to rely on Johnson, then it is over before it starts, exactly how many flat, green, bouncy wickets are they likely to see?

      • January 23rd 2013 @ 6:37pm
        Sunil said | January 23rd 2013 @ 6:37pm | ! Report

        That’s why khawaja is so important because he handles swing very well

    • January 23rd 2013 @ 7:53am
      adsa said | January 23rd 2013 @ 7:53am | ! Report

      Lyon will be carted to all points of the grounds in India, so the back up spinner to him will be important. Lyon may struggle to take tail end wickets in India.

      • Roar Pro

        January 23rd 2013 @ 7:59am
        aggregated drupe said | January 23rd 2013 @ 7:59am | ! Report

        Lyon is a good spinner. It is just hard to spin the bowl on australian wickets. He has done well in the subcontinent.

    • January 23rd 2013 @ 7:54am
      Jason said | January 23rd 2013 @ 7:54am | ! Report


      • January 23rd 2013 @ 8:05am
        Cameron said | January 23rd 2013 @ 8:05am | ! Report


        • January 23rd 2013 @ 8:17am
          Red Kev said | January 23rd 2013 @ 8:17am | ! Report

          I would say the short answer is “because the English are better than us”.

          • January 23rd 2013 @ 2:52pm
            Rob from Brumby Country said | January 23rd 2013 @ 2:52pm | ! Report

            Care to qualify that, RK? With evidence rather than conjecture?

        • January 23rd 2013 @ 12:53pm
          Jason said | January 23rd 2013 @ 12:53pm | ! Report

          See John 360180’s post below. Pretty much exactly my thoughts.

    • January 23rd 2013 @ 8:32am
      jamesb said | January 23rd 2013 @ 8:32am | ! Report

      England will be HOT HOT HOT favourites to win.

      Australia doesn’t have the batting depth or a spinner that could spin out the opposition on days 4 or 5. Australia could go toe to toe with England with our fast bowlers, and that is Australia’s only hope.

      But questions need to be asked at Cricket Australia as to why we are not developing good quality batsman and spinners. Australia’s team for the Ashes does appear to be weak.

      Responsibilty should fall on James Sutherland. He is the boss of CA, and ATM he is overseeing an ordinary Australian side. Don;t you think Sutherland should fall by the wayside.

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