Well, the hour is fast approaching. In a little over 3 hours as I write, the first ball will be bowled in Brisbane in the most eagerly anticipated Ashes series since, um, the last one.
As someone who likes to read cricket articles most days on cricinfo.com, I have to say I have been almost suffocated in potential reading material. Every newspaper has had a special pull-out supplement on the Ashes, and the aforementioned website has been creaking under the weight of online articles about Anglo-Australian cricket, from every conceivable angle. Everyone from Tony Blair to Johnny Borrell, lead singer of Razorlight, has been interviewed.
So the first session of the First Test is approaching fast, and I am still desperately trying to wade through the last supplement, as I confess I will feel underprepared for the series without consuming every word written on the subject.
However, I have taken some time out from my busy special-supplement-reading schedule to share some more specific predictions, bear with me and try to show some interest.
(1) Glenn McGrath will not last the 5 Tests
(2) Andrew Strauss will reprise Michael Vaughan’s excellent tour 4 years ago and plunder a lot of runs
(3) Ian Bell will do ok, better than last time. Alastair Cook I am not so sure about, I think he might struggle. KP and Flintoff will score big when it comes off for them, and get out cheaply when it doesn’t
(4) Warnie will take another 40 or so wickets in the series
(5) Hayden and Langer will get the Aussies off to much better starts than they did in England. But I think Flintoff will still have the wood on Gilchrist
(6) Harmison. Aaaaaaaaaggh. If Harmison bowls as he can in 4 out of 5 Tests, England will win the series. Otherwise Australia will take the honours. Which means I think Australia will take the honours.
I realise number (6) there contradicts my series result prediction in my previous post, but to be honest that one was more hopeful than expectant…
Come on the Poms