Ashes in Australia – A view of the oppositionJames Nixon |
With only two weeks away from the first test of Ashes series 2017 at the Gabba, Australia, the former England’s wicketkeeper Geraint Jones prepares the ground for the English team revolving the challenges before and on the pitch.
Jones has been part of a memorable 2005 Ashes, often described as the most exciting and greatest ever and member of the first England team in 20 years that went to Australia as winners of Ashes. Commenting on the atmosphere the former cricket star said to Betway Insider earlier this week that “You get the feeling the whole country is against you. You know it from the minute you get there. If you get a cricket fan at passport control, then there’s a good chance you’ll have a comment made to you.”
“Playing in Australia, you know that you are going to hear them pretty much every ball, and pretty loudly. When you’re on strike, it’s your turn to get it. Thankfully for me, being in the middle, I couldn’t actually hear a lot compared to guys fielding on the boundary. But there’s no point trying to go up against 10,000 people in the crowd near. Your best option is to show that you’ve got a personality and that you’re out there enjoying it, playing a game you love” he adds.
As the Englishman highlights that feeling was also clear between the two teams as the Australian one had camps and, as a team, decided they weren’t going to be as friendly as they were in 2005. They made a point of not making the cricket game comfortable, and they did that very well.”
In this line, Jones explains that the biggest difference between an Ashes taking place in Australia and in England is related with the publicity. “It’s a bit harder in Australia with an Ashes series on because there’s so much publicity around it. You get a bit more attention walking down the street than you do on other tours”, he admits.
Another key factor is associated with the role of the media. As the former wicketkeeper highlights “The media are the worst for creating cracks. The more turmoil that happens, the more they have to talk about,” reflects Jones. “In an Ashes series especially, you still want to chill out and read the paper and watch TV. As much as you try and ignore it, it’s virtually impossible to not be aware if you are the individual being targeted.”
The first Ashes test is on 23-27 of November and the Australian team appears as the strong favourite to win this one. Jones commenting on England’s suggest to the players keep telling theirselves after a losss that “there will be one more opportunity and it’s more than likely going to come your way. Let’s be ready for it”.