I posted this on my 7 January 2011 blog – immediately after England’s victory in the final Ashes Test match in Sydney: “I know that things will change and, in due course, England will be rubbish at cricket again but, in the meantime, I'm going to enjoy the moment”.And so it has proved…
Australia completely outclassed a desperately poor England side to win the series 5-0. I listened to quite a lot of overnight radio coverage of all five test matches and at the end of the third match (the Ashes having been lost), Geoff Boycott described the performance in that particular match along the following lines: “well, I thought the team’s performance in the first two matches was awful and didn’t think it could get any worse… but I was wrong”.
After the fourth Test, Michael Vaughan described the performance as “the worst yet”.
Sadly, after today’s debacle (England were bowled out in their second innings for just 166 in under 32 overs to lose the match by 281 runs), Jonathan Agnew reckoned that the fifth test had been the worst performance… “It's so disappointing to have witnessed that. The fight has gone”!
I love sport.
I completely accept that there are winners and losers but, even listening to the games on the radio, it felt humiliating… it felt as though the England team (with the exception of perhaps a couple of players) had simply thrown in the towel. There was no fight, no spirit… and THAT was what made it all so depressing.
Photo: from England’s victory in Sydney three years ago!