Refreshed Anderson back to Lead Ashes Bid

Posted: Thursday, October 24, 2013 by Laura in Labels: , , , , , , ,

England fast bowler, James Anderson, admits that he was frustrated to miss the one-day series against Australia but is feeling refreshed to have another crack at the old rivals Down Under.

The 31-year-old set England on their way to a 3-0 Ashes win on home soil in the summer with an outstanding 10-wicket display in the first Test at Trent Bridge.

Anderson's contribution thereafter was modest by comparison. He took 12 wickets in four Test matches, which owed much to a four-for in Australia's first innings of the series finale at the Oval.

Some cricket betting experts cited fatigue as the reason behind Anderson's relative slump in form. It was inevitable he would be rested for the one-dayers that followed the Ashes.

The Lancashire star has now had almost two months off, in which time he has enjoyed a holiday with his family and taken a break from cricket.

That break came to an end this week as Anderson rejoined an England squad heading to Australia in search of a fourth successive Ashes win, a feat last achieved by the Three Lions in 1890.

Anderson expects another fierce battle this winter, with a draining contest just gone fresh in his memory.

"It was a really close-fought series, even if the final scoreline says 3-0. The games themselves were very close and it was tough, both physically and mentally, as it always is," he told the Lancashire Telegraph.

"With the away series being so soon, it was good to get a break. It is frustrating missing cricket, especially when you're fully fit. But, seeing the bigger picture and with an important series coming up, it was probably the right thing to do."

Anderson, who has taken a total of 329 wickets in 87 Tests, could get some overs under his belt against a Western Australia XI, a match which begins on October 31.

Image by Nic Redhead.

Trott Judges Lehmann Response Perfectly

Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013 by Laura in Labels: , , , , , ,

Jonathan Trott has responded to Australia coach Darren Lehmann's recent jibe that England were "dour" in their 3-0 Ashes victory this summer in exactly the right way.

Lehmann branded some of England's play in their comfortable home victory as "dour", while he also claimed his side had "made inroads" into Trott's mind ahead of the return Ashes down under, which begins with the first Test in Brisbane on November 21.

Lehmann appeared to be suggesting the England star's below-par batting displays were down to his side being able to nullify him and work him out at the crease and not as a result of the Warwickshire man's own mistakes.

Several cricket betting pundits believe there is no disputing the fact that the 32-year-old was one of the big let-downs for England, in a series that otherwise will be remembered for one in which the home side got the job done in a professional manner, as opposed to a spectacular and dramatic win like back in 2005.

Trott only managed an average of 29.30 during the recent Ashes series, but says he has been working hard on improving and will be ready to face the Aussie attack again at The Gabba next month, a fixture for which England are the favourites in the cricket betting odds.

"When you don't score runs people like to think they've worked you out, but sometimes that's cricket, things just don't go your way," he said. "I've been working really hard to put a few things right technically and work things out and make sure I get to Australia playing really well."

Trott was also asked recently about the early comments coming out of the Australian camp as they continue to lick their wounds following another Ashes defeat in England and, while refusing to enter into anything remotely approaching mind-games, his riposte was perfectly judged and will no doubt have wound Lehmann and co up somewhat.

He said: "I'd take another dour 3-0 in Australia. I know Australians are a confident bunch of guys, but they've lost the Ashes series and they are making comments already.

"That's just the Australian way, that's how they are - I think we go about our cricket a little bit differently."
The words of a confident man who, while admitting on one hand he needs to improve personally, knows a 3-0 win for his team does very much speak for itself.

Image by Rae Allen