All eyes will move to Perth, where the visitors will need to win in order to save the Ashes series. The WACA is generally a pitch that batsmen can thrive on, and both teams will hope to get their big name batsmen to rack up big tons in the opening innings.
A question mark is still around, whether Ben Stokes will join the England squad after being named to play in the ODI Series following the test series, and by the way the current battling line up has performed in the second test, it would seem that he is very much needed in this game.
The tail enders of the England batting line up didn’t put up too much of a fight, with the only form of resilience coming in the shape of Johnny Bairstow who managed to scrape together 36 runs of 57 balls while losing batting partners all around him.
The wicketkeeper batsman really needed support around him, which should have come from experienced batsman Moeen Ali, but never arrived.
The Adelaide pitch did take its toll in this second test, as England’s decision to send Australia into bat first proved a costly mistake, as the pitch became more of a bowler’s friendly wicket as the match went on into day 5, which can be shown by both Mitchell Starc and James Anderson claiming five wicket bags in the second innings for both teams.
How do England save the Ashes from being a whitewash?
“Where to from now?”, will be the main question from the English media have for this current group of touring players. Does this England team have what it takes to retain the Ashes, or are we in store for a 5-0 whitewash by an Australian team that many experts doubted to be this competitive against a more prepared English outfit?
The English selectors need to take a look at the previous match, to see if this is the group that can save the Ashes series at the WACA, or do new talent need to be given a go as the current group of players aren’t playing the cricket it takes to win important test matches.
The current outlook of test cricket has completely changed from 5 years ago; you cannot play outstanding for 3 days , collapse in 1 day and try to save the game on the final and still expect to win a test match, those days are gone.
The England batman’s need to take accountability
Not taking away anything from the outstanding bowling effort that the Aussies have given in the series thus far, the English batsman need to stand up and be held accountable for their lack of run scoring in this series. So far no English batsman has scored a 100 in this series, which in an Ashes test match is simply not up to standard.
England’s batsmen’s have also been constantly troubled by Nathan Lyon in this series. The offspinner has been getting remarkable turn on more pace bowling pitches, and have been tormenting the visitors when his being used by captain Steve Smith, to slow down the England run rate, and take crucial wickets and pivotal points in the game.
Who will be the master and commander of the 3rd test?
So far, Steve Smith has tactically outsmarted Joe Root, when it’s come to crucial times during both test matches. Smith has also out performed his counterpart scoring a vital century for Australia in the first test that swung the momentum of the first test match back in Australia’s favour.
Root as a captain has come up short when it came to his decision making, field placement, and bowler selection when trying to reduce Australia’s lead in the second test match.
It’s said a true captain leads from the front, and this has yet to be seen as one score of 67 across 4 innings will not be enough to prove that Root has been steering the ship in the right direction.
See you in Perth!