Does The Ashes Need Fixing?
Home advantage is real. We’re all for it and many are the songs to be sung in its praise. The Ashes Series, however, seems to put a right royal flush into place when one considers the statistics. The recent Ashes Series is number 8 out of 9 to have been won by the host nation. What’s more, by the time the next Ashes Series is played in England, the Aussies would not have reigned victorious over yonder in 18 years. As for the Ashes in Australia, England have won but once in Australia in the last 35 years.
Statistics are generally boring to the extent of either boggling the mind or inspiring those at the receiving end to shut down mentally and in more severe cases, foam at the mouth. The Ashes statistics, however, are a different ball game altogether (if you will) and nothing to be foamed at, so to speak. Instead, they warrant the question: is there something inherently wrong with the Ashes Series?
When Is Enough, Enough?
Boredom is the decided enemy of progress. The question has often been asked: is it really necessary to play 5 tests? Considering that fifteen times out of the last 17 Ashes Series, the 5th test has been a dead rubber, it’s perhaps time to reconsider whether we’re simply doing it this way because we have been for so long. Tradition aside, one must contemplate whether a full hand really is justified.
When Did The Rules Become Optional?
Nit-picking, you say? Consider this: the front-foot no-ball rule. When last has this actually been enforced unless a wicket was taken? What this comes down to is that the lines are blurring for bowlers as to when they are actually persistently overstepping the boundaries and breaking the rules.
Then, of course, there’s the bouncer. Or is there? The rule is simple: bowlers are restricted to two bouncers per over. Enforce or scrap the rule, we say. At the moment, rules not being enforced are having the single effect of bowlers losing balls over the rules not being enforced properly. When exactly did the Ashes Test become the grand exception playground as far as rules go?
While we’re at it, bashing the Ashes Series this way and that, is there anything to be done about the extreme Australian weather conditions? Probably just as much as what there is to be done about the morale in camp Joe Root.
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