Monday, December 18, 2006

463 days in waiting

... but an emotional Australian team have won back the Ashes.
As the Barmy Army trumpeter finished Jerusalem this morning, the subdued ground woke up. It felt like England's last rites though; grandiose applause ringing around the ground from the 10,000 or so supporters.
But I still thought that England could come away with a record-breaking draw or win. Then Billy struck up Bon Jovi's 'Livin' on a Prayer' and you were reminded that Pietersen and Flintoff's stout resistance couldn't last all day. Four wickets for 14 runs at the end told the story of England's soft demise, although much can be taken to Melbourne: Cook's future; KP the middle-order rock; Harmison's rhythm and no doubt a relaxed Christmas with the wives and ECB entourage.
Thoughts on the series? Ring the changes for England? Another 4-1 outcome?