England (294 & 329) defeated Australia (225 & 263) by 135 runs @ The Oval
MOTM: Jofra Archer (6-62 & 0-66), Compton-Miller Medal: Steve Smith (774 runs @ 110.57)
Series drawn 2-2, Australia retains the Ashes
Dropping Travis ‘Richard’ Head for the Human Victory Cigar in Mitch Marsh instead of coming to your senses and annihilating Warner and Harris, and then willingly choosing to bowl on a good batting deck, resulting in a tired bowling attack dying of exhaustion, and then being unable to catch herpes in the field, let alone a cricket ball.
Needless to say, Alfie, Timmy Paine, Trevor Hohns and the rest of those weird looking gimps got the result those moves deserved, and a series ‘Win’ in England for the first time since mental disintegration was in vogue went missing.
So, we have the reality of the first drawn Ashes series since 1972, and all things considered, a drawn series is a pretty fair result.
Despite what us Aussies may claim, neither team was good enough to win the series- The Poms kicked things off by having the Aussies at 8-122 at Edgbaston, only to allow Steve Smith to begin what turned into a month long arse slapping, and, despite being generally the better team, the Aussies have to wear every single thing about Day 4 at Headingley.
It was a ‘good’ series, but it wasn’t even close to 2005.
Outside of a notable few (And we know who they are), the series was an endless race to the bottom for just about every batsman, who failed to stand up time and again, as both bowling attacks happily took turns ripping them to shreds like a dog finding a pair of socks, which seems to be a common theme in Test cricket of late, as batting worldwide gets worse and worse.
Pat Cummins was historically good (29 wickets in a test series without a 5fer), Josh Hazlewood was a Clydesdale, Stuart Broad was confirmed as Dave Warner’s father in a paternity test, Jofra had his moments, but after that, it slowly falls away with maddening inconsistency and two weird looking bald spinners.
And then of course, there was the usual bumbling crap all series from both Captains.
Tim Paine took 13 attempts to get a DRS review correct, which was a reflection of just about everything else he did, and Joe Root was as inspiring as a plank of wood, making weird field setups which leaked cheap runs, continually mismanaging Jofra Archer in an effort to kill Smith, and failing with the bat multiple times, keeping up his usual shtick of scoring a half-century and then not reaching 3 figures.
Root couldn’t convert the South American tribes to Christianity, let alone convert a 50 to a ton.
Compared to a crazy series like 2005, the only moments that people are going to remember from this Ashes are it being ‘Smith’s Ashes’, and the Bristol Boxer winning Headingley off his own bat.
But aside from Smith, there’s another batting performance that can’t be forgotten from last night, and this series.
A career best 117 in a losing cause sees him finish with two centuries this series (More than every other Australian not named Smith put together), and it tops his mention of “Yeah, Bristol!” to Ben Stokes as his best contribution to the Oval test.
If he’s not playing against Pakistan after doing what no other mortal Australian batsman could do this series, I’ll spew up, especially with the utter shitkickers that got dropped for less.
On another note, here’s JT’s guide for fixing our broken, crumpled burning wreck which apparently resembles an Australia’s openers.
Drop Warner, give him a rest, make him play in the Shield, far away from Stuart Broad, and most of all, make him turn him back into the violent little smurf we came to know and admire.
As for Harris… Justin Langer ran him out of WA because he was “mediocre with flashes of brilliance”.
Turns out at Test level, he’s mediocre with flashes of mediocre.
Superb work dropping Bancroft for him then, Alfie.
So, a 4 month trek across the UK ends with Australia ‘winning’ the Ashes… in the same way England ‘won’ the World Cup.