Whilst the 2005 Ashes was absolutely brilliant as a spectacle, if one were to judge it on the quality of cricket alone, it was fairly mediocre in all major aspects, particularly I think batting and fielding.
Yes but surely it was the brilliance of the bowling which made batting difficult and vice-versa? It wasn't so much poor batting by the Aussies as excellent bowling by the English, for example? It's not as if the matches were close because both sides played poorly. Quite to the contrary, the matches were so close because both sides were playing so well. This time, Australia appear to be batting better but also are much better at ensuring England's bowlers don't get a sniff.