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We won the fifth test in S'Syddey in 1983 and lost the fifth test in Perth in 1993. That's One-All in these finishes. So what's in store for Old Trafford, I wonder? Good news, I hope, but to be honest, without McGrath, it's a worry.


Cric Info tonight - they are on drugs. Do they think us fools?!?

And this ...

"England pulled off a dramatic victory at Edgbaston, winning by the slenderest of margins - two runs - to level the series in the most astonishing manner."


There is something wrong with me. I hate to see opposition players happy. Simply loathe it. There is virtually nothing in this world, absolutely nothing maybe, that burns me up more.

Mad? You call it.

Kiss me Hardy.

Kiss you? Hardly!

And another thing. Tony bloody Grieg! 2 minutes was all I could handle. Night. Fucking. Mare.

Listen, I need some counselling now goddamn it. Where's the trauma unit - somebody get me some oxygen.

I went through all pain thresholds tonight. My eldest daughter had her confirmation/1st Holy Communion today so we had a bit of a piss up with my family.

30 runs to go, the pom brother in law is shitting bricks, my old man is death riding Oz (some sort of superstition - so long as he backs the opposition we all know we are a shoe in), the other bro-in-law (philipino/Ozzy/Pom) is trying to understand the game and why we are all so tense, when the mrs (pissed as) comes in, changes the channel and says that my mum wants to watch some show on the ABC).

I respond: "No f*&%&king way, are you serious?", Mrs is determined that the boys should listen and a fight ensues as to TV rights [much swearing]. The youngest boy has removed the batteries from the remote, and deprogrammed the bloody thing, 5 precious minutes go by, with all the blokes tense and pacing when a blank video is found rewound and recording of ABC programme begins.

Talk about blood, sweat and tears!

I'm sorry, Pat, but your wife is mad. There is only one solution, and I think you know what it is. It might be tough. You mightn't like it. But you MUST do the right thing and ...

... buy another telly.

Poor bloody Kasper hey. Talk about the ultimate team man and he actually looked more comfortable at the crease towards the latter stages than Lee who took a pounding and a half. I thought he broke his hand there for a minute after he copped one on the glove. You can't drop Kasper after that can you, even though his bowling was tripe? You'd have to keep a bloke on watch with him I reckon!

Whilst my old man was kinda barracking for us he said that it would be good for the series if we could go in 1-1 to Manchester. "Bugger that" I told him. I would much much rather have seen the English tabloids had they thrown that match. Simon Jones would never play another Test after dropping Kasper on the boundary, they would be after Vaughan's head as captain etc etc.

My team for the third test (batting order):

D.Martyn (begrudgingly)
B.Hodge (12th Man)

Play 2 spinners as 3 quicks aren't getting the job done. Hussey can bowl military medium if it gets dire. Katich to open with Langer (Hayden out to teach him a lesson not to be so arrogant), Hussey down to do lower order Katich-like job. MacGill in for Dizzy for a gamble, but he can't be any worse.

Any thoughts??

Interesting Adsy - I'd like to see Hussey or Haddin but, at the same time, I wouldn't want the poms to think we are panicking by dropping Hayden.

As for Martyn - he makes me furious and sick with anger.

I reckon you are right about bringing Magilla in for Dizzy (poor bastard is just fucked). Definately gotta bring in Magilla - or Bracken for fucks sake - left armer it's a no brainer.

A 2nd TV? Now there's an idea. What about a 2nd wife - competition always brings out the best in all of us.

My old man was saying the same thing Adsy - what's with these old blokes?

He also said his Dad used to say "And it's raining in Manchester." (one of his many obsessive/compulsive phrases)

Two fucking runs!

I am shattered. I am also likely to be locked up, because my fuckwit in law pommy rang me to gloat, I threatened to rip his pommy head off and drop a shit in the stump.

On a calmer note, I was exceptionally impressed with the sportsmanship of Mr Flintoff and his refusal to bowl in an intimidating fashion at the tailenders despite the exhortations of his Captain. The odd bouncer (or 20) was an accident, surely, old boy.

While not for a second wavering in my opinion that cricket is the dullest of all sports, I would like to say "Ha! You lost! To the English, of all people!"

What was that word you used the other day, Tony? Scha-den-freu-de?

I was hoping for a tie to keep the series alive without giving the Poms a win, but it was not to be.

You are right, Adsy. You are saying what every Australian supporter has been thinking for some time. However, given Langer's romantic attachment to Hayden, I'd make Hayden 12th man instead of Hodge to mix the cocktails and cook the meals. If form and talent actually counted for anything, Michael Bevan would at least be on the touring team. Gillespie didn't deserve to get picked for the New Zealand tour, let alone the Ashes. Even in his better days he wasn't a great bowler, merely a consistent one.

Oddly Tony, the fuckity fuck fuck thing was almost exactly how I felt after the 1st test.

Wasn't that and awesome game of cricket though ?
From England's merry plundering of the Oz bowlers in their first innings, England's steady wicket taking throughout the game, then, Shane Warne in awesome form ,just brilliant, that ball to remove Strauss !!! Brett Lee stepping up and showing that he can be every bit as good as McGrath, and he batted well second time around. Then Warney looked like he might just save the test, well batted.

I couldn't watch towards the end, I was pacing up and down nervously, shouting "Come on England" or "What the fuck was that you mangy idiot" as circumstances dictated.

When Harmison bowled his umpteenth short ball to take the last wicket I didn't know whether to cheer or faint from the relief.

"While not for a second wavering in my opinion that cricket is the dullest of all sports" - have you seen Formula 1 ?

"There is something wrong with me. I hate to see opposition players happy. Simply loathe it. There is virtually nothing in this world, absolutely nothing maybe, that burns me up more." - I know just what you mean, but although I can cope with McGrath, Ponting or Gilchrist looking happy, seeing Brett Lee sneering or Warne gloating makes me want to punch the telly.

"I was exceptionally impressed with the sportsmanship of Mr Flintoff and his refusal to bowl in an intimidating fashion at the tailenders despite the exhortations of his Captain. The odd bouncer (or 20) was an accident, surely, old boy." - and Australia don't bowl bouncers at tail enders, oh no, not ever. Much kudos to Brett Lee for standing up to a fearful pounding frm our quick, I bet he's got some bruises tonight.

Can't they slow down a bit? I was at a loss this afternoon, and the big empty maw of a Test-less Monday gapes before me.

Still, a well-deserved victory seeing as, in the scheme of things, most of England's players played marginally less shitly than most of Australia's, with some memorable individual performances.

I'm personally enjoying Tony Greig - it's Boycott who is consistently getting on my tits.

Enjoying Greig is a rare and disturbing disorder- seek medical attention fast.

Do the poms actually enjoy Tony Greig's pearls of commentry wisdom or do they despise him as much as us?

No shame in being beaten by the number one team in the world.

Listen to it on the radio next time, the TV crowd are bloody awful compared to Aggers, Blowers, Maxwellers and Lawsers.

Here was I thinking I could spend today getting over a few jars from celebration. All jokes aside, it's time that sniper in the light tower starts earning his 50 quid and shows Flintoff what a 'head shot' really looks like.

I hate losing at cricket to the English. The misery of the Botham days just aren't long enough ago.

I want Australian cricket to be a boot stamping on an English cricketer's face, forever.

Why is it that both Fox & SBS (Channel 4) employ annoying fuckers like T Greig, G Boycott, Fucker Hussain & David Lloyd, too name a few!! Thank Christ for Beefy & Boof. However, No 1 vote for fucker of all time is M Vaughan....Knob-jockey of the highest order, doesn't know where his off (middle, leg) stump is & prances around in some kinda Anne White body suit under his whites. KNOB!!!

Freddy Flintoff - Respect. Giles - Bowls Pies, makes even the buffet bowler look threatening.


Looks good to me, although this constant recycling of Langer/Martyn/West-Australian-of-choice must be sacked is a bit tiring.

My only change would be to send one R Ponting to the showers and pop Haddin in his place.

I think the person on suicide watch would be Warney. Fancy stepping on your castle!

"I was exceptionally impressed with the sportsmanship of Mr Flintoff and his refusal to bowl in an intimidating fashion at the tailenders despite the exhortations of his Captain. The odd bouncer (or 20) was an accident, surely, old boy."

As Steve Waugh said during the world cup in 1999:

"We're not here to make friends, mate."

Exactly Alistair, and as for...

"Giles - Bowls Pies, makes even the buffet bowler look threatening."

Yet he still manages to take Ozzy wickets, Ponting, Clarke, Katich, Gilchrist, these are all decent batsmen. I agree he isn't Warne, but then no-one else is.

It would be far easier for Lee to restrict the runs scored against his bowling to under 100 than expect to score a half-century every innings.

PS. Mark Nicholas = Mediocre Cricketer = Commentating Legend

Mark Nicholas = The Golden Blare.

Ie. Polished and capable, but can get a bit irritating when his excitometer goes into the red.

Time for dinner, then. As coincidence would have it, I'm having S&K pie.

But Martyn I think invites it onto himself with his percieved attitude. I thought he had turned the corner with his subcontinent adventures but seems now to have fallen back into bad habits.

Magilla is a definate inclusion by the looks and Kasper would be my choice to take the shine off the new ball for the spinners. He looks 100 times more capable than Dizzy to take a surprise wicket at the moment.

However I wonder if the selectors will tinker with the lineup much, if at all. They have shown remarkable persistence with the incumbents and no inclination to go with a "horses for courses" policy, which would certainly see Hodge or Hussey get a callup. I am a big fan of Hussey actually. Played really well in the one dayers, does equally well in the English county conditions and would sharpen up our fielding no end. (Langer didn't have the best of days in the field on the second day) He also looks like a great team man, no hint of the arrogance that has creeped into the team on this tour. Still I think the only change will be the second spinner.

Dunno about Haddin... surely Hodge is the backup bat and Haddin is there if Gilly goes down?? He's not a bad bat but how does he go without the gloves?

If there is a bloke who is entitled to be "on watch" it would be Warney, with all that is going on around him on and off the ground.

There's no one immediate comes to mind to come in for Hayden. For me he's the only one looking shaky. Sure Martyn's been a bit slack, but he doesn't ever look as if he's going to get out. Unlike Hayden. Hussey for Hayden maybe.

There's talk about Katich being flicked but I can't see why. He's been OK. But maybe they'll bring in Watson for Katich's batting and Dizz/Kaspro bowling.

Magilla for Dizzy is a possibility, but you'd have to look at the pitch first.

They aren't going to make too many changes at this late stage though. Most likely the only change will be Magilla for either Dizzy or Kaspro.

Like I said at Uber, though. Bowling wins matches and at the moment the Poms have the better attack. What's more Ponting handed them the momentum and I reckon we're in trouble.

England now a very big chance to win The Ashes.

"England now a very big chance to win The Ashes."

Stop trying to claim underdog status! It's the only thing we have!

Sorry, Alistair; I got in first. Just to reiterate- "England now a very big chance to win The Ashes."

The worrying thing is, I believe it.

The thing is... Australia care more about winning. The mentality is different. England aren't used to winning and don't expect it. Glorious failure is our speciality.

So winning this test in such dramatic fashion means, in a strange way, that motivation will seep away for the rest of the series. Now we can say, "ahh, Australia won the Ashes, as is proper - they are the greatest team in world cricket, what do you expect? But we'll always have Edgbaston! Put up quite a performance there!"

Very slick mozzing manoever, Alistair, but I'm not buying it.

This England team and harder that others and have the key ingredient for winning test matches - pace depth. They can always keep the pressure on, that's why the Aussies keep getting out after getting starts. We need Steve Waugh badly, we have too many millionaires and not enough grinders.

And then there's OUR bowling. Without McGrath the pace stocks are a tenuous prospect and too much is falling to Warne.

"mozzing"? Is that a piece of Australian vernacular that has past me by? Tell me what it means and it's going straight in my active vocabulary. Like "pissweak".

Ah, it's all larks though, isn't it? Both sides convinced they're going to lose! You guys have had the Ashes forever, some time we have to beat you. And then you'll win 'em straight back, as is proper.

One of your commenters says that he hates Warne. I don't get it. He's obviously great.

This is a mozz, Alistair.

As is this.

You just know you wield some serious clout when you can mozz nature.

This is the Definitive Explanation, though.

PS: Warne is a great bowler, but possibly not the 21st Century's greatest humanitarian and all round good-guy.


That all comes as part of the package though, doesn't it? I won't hear a word against him!

You're a rare cove for not getting stuck into Warne. I love his cricket, but I'm not much of a fan of his off-field exploits.

Yet when it comes to being judgemental there's always a touch of the "there but for the grace, etc ... ". Without, of course, the 599 wickets, wall-to-wall women, blond tips, hair contract, newspaper columns, flash cars, big house, advertising and sponsorship deals, and the rest.

I'm taller, though.

Well, it is Old Trafford next and that is another unhappy hunting ground for the Poms and a ground full of joy for us. Get McGillers in to partner Shane and they will have no answer. Unless Pietersen smashes both of them out of the Park.

We never know when we are beaten- that last wicket stand proved it. One bloody boundary from glory after being out for the count. It was one of the all time greats and will be on a DVD near you shortly.

This Pom hate Tony Grieg, whose tongue is firmly lodged up the batty of all thing Australian. No matter how well England are doing, the Saffa mercenary is on hand to tell us just how wonderful the Convicts are and how they'll knock off 400 runs in one session.
Complete tosser.

You hate him, too, Boycs? Well, that make's two (million) of us.

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