The Reuters global sports blog
The inconsistent use of the Decision Review System (DRS) has put the International Cricket Council (ICC) in the firing line once again, strengthening the already popular notion that the governing body is helpless against the wishes of its most influential member board – India.
As the rest of the cricketing world went up in unison in a huge appeal, like a stern umpire, India once again shook its head and refused to budge on the use of technology in the game.
The Indian cricket board (BCCI) remains sceptical about DRS, basing their objection on the ball-tracking technology which is not fool-proof and vetoed its mandatory use.
BCCI convinced ICC to leave it to the participating boards in a bilateral cricket series, thus ensuring DRS, which allows teams to challenge umpires’ decisions, does not feature in any series involving India.
11.53am local time on December 29, 2010 at Melbourne Cricket Ground. It’s the moment England cricket fans have waited nearly a quarter of a century for. The Ashes are won/retained in Australia.
Minus the Perth aberration, even the hardest Australian heart would have to concede it was deserved. Surely?
Ricky Ponting made the long, lonely walk back to the dressing room after another Ashes failure on Tuesday as England moved to the brink of a famous triumph at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
The sight of Ponting’s wickets shattered after he had scrapped to 20 runs in 73 balls summed up his own personal decline and that of his once-dominant team.
England should now win the Melbourne test and retain the Ashes after taking a commanding first innings lead of 346 runs after batting through day two of the fourth test.
Australia captain Ricky Ponting’s frustration over a TV referral decision boiled over into a row with umpire Aleem Dar.
England gave the perfect response to those who had written them off after the 267-run drubbing in Perth with a day of absolute dominance in front of 84,345 fans at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Sunday.
The first day of the “Boxing Day” test at the MCG is one of the great fixtures on the Australian sporting calendar but Andrew Strauss and his team were superior in every area of play to skittle the hosts for 98 runs and reach 157 without loss at the close of play on day one of the fourth Ashes test.
Congratulations to Australia for finally coming to the Ashes party. As humiliating as the innings loss was in Adelaide, to level the series in such emphatic style with a 267-run win in Perth has re-asserted some authority over the old enemy.
Naturally, questions will now to turn to England’s frailties, and more pointedly to the dismantling of their so-called “world-class” batting line up, as well as their inability to deal with a bouncy pitch and fast short-pitched bowling.
Well there it is. Australia thrash England by 267 runs in Perth and the Ashes series is all square at 1-1 with two tests to go in Melbourne and Sydney.
Australia’s policy of playing four seamers on a bouncy track paid dividends and England’s batsmen proved they weren’t such world beaters when they were put under serious pressure.
It would be difficult to overestimate the importance of Mitchell Johnson’s display on day two of the third Ashes test. Australia had all but given up on the Ashes after England bowled them out for 268 on day one. The post mortem had started and the main topic of discussion was about who could or would replace Ricky Ponting as skipper.
On Friday morning, Johnson was reborn as a test bowler and skittled England’s top order. The impact was immediate. Suddenly, the Australian voices in the crowd drowned out England’s “Barmy Army”, the Australian players were chirping aggressively and the English wickets kept tumbling until they were bowled out for 187. Johnson finished with 6-38.
Mitchell Johnson showed the sort of form that won him the 2009 ICC Cricketer of the Year award with a fiery spell of inswinging that accounted for four of the England top order on Friday morning, bringing Australia right back into the third Ashes test in Perth.
The Australian quick, dropped for the second Adelaide test after going wicketless for the first time in a test in the first match at the Gabba, took time out from his celebrations of his second wicket to make his feelings clear to his press box critics in a gesture captured by Reuters’ photographer Tim Wimborne.
England won the first day honours in the third Ashes test to the delight of their ‘Barmy Army’, bowling Australia out for 268 and reaching 29 without loss before the close of play.
Australia’s tail wagged hard to get the hosts to respectability and their four fast bowlers will be keen to get back into the English batsmen on Friday on a pitch that looks to have plenty of life in it. Mitchell Johnson’s fine knock of 62 will be a big boost to the Queenslander – a confidence player returning after being dropped for the heavy defeat in Adelaide – and he has plenty to prove with the ball.