We might have had a thread on this already, but now the hour is nigh, so time to go on the record again.
Top runscorer - Shane Watson, just from Ricky Ponting. Trott for the Poms.
Top wicket taker - Mitchell Johnson. Swann for the Poms.
Dumpings - Marcus North
Debutant/Returning players - Pete Siddle (due to injury, not dropping).
Surprise Packet - If I knew that, it wouldn't be a surprise. Alright, um, Swampy Marsh to make a surprise return as Australia's front line spinner.
Scoreline: 2-1 England
Top Runscorers: Kevin Pietersen, Michael Clarke
Top Wicket Takers: Mitchell Johnson, James Anderson
Dumpings: Marcuss North, Nathan Hauritz, Steven Finn
Debutant/Returning Players: Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith. Tremlett will come in for Finn after the 2nd Test
Suprise Package: Ian Bell will ton up twice in the series.
Not quite sure of my predictions yet, but what I would want to see is:
Top scorer Clarke with a bucket of buckets
Top wicket taker Mitch, Swann the only good bowler for England (because he's generally awesome)
North to GAGF
Hussey to retire gracefully once the series is sealed
Smith to be brilliant
KP to show one flash of brilliance then be dismal
A close match on the order of Mohali/Edgbaston that we actually ****ing win
4-0 England (one match to be washed out)
Top runscorer - Alistair Cook (Watto for Aussies)
Top wicket taker - James Anderson (Watto for Aussies).
Dumpings - Mid-series: North, Hussey, Hauritz. End-series: Ponting.
Debutant/Returning players - Xavier Doherty
Surprise Packet - Mark Nicholas will win an award for his commentary, and will be knighted in the Xmas honours list in 2011.
Good to see your support for Collingwood, Matt. :)
Originally Posted by Matt79
Top runscorer - Shane Watson, Bell for the Poms YOU ****ING HEARD ME
Top wicket taker- Johnson , Swann just beating out Broad
Dumpings - Haurie, Tremlett?
Returning/Debutant - Hughes
Surprise packet - North YOU ****ING HEARD ME
3-1 to the good guys, that's England
Top runscorer - Kevin Pietersen. Watson for the filthy horrible crims.
Top wicket taker - Stuart Broad. Bollinger for the filthy horrible crims.
Dumpings - Many Aussies to dump their passports in a state of embarassment
Debutant/Returning players - Allan Border from the desperate convicts
Surprise Packet - wdfu_ben91 returns to congratulate England
More seriously though,
2-1 our way (Adelaide to be a draw), with wins at the Gabba and SCG
Pupter to top score. Strauss for England.
Mitch to relish the faster, bouncier wickets and get some of his own back
Hilfenhaus to be extremely solid and finally get a 5-wicket ****ing haul. Top wicket taker in the series
Dougeh to provide excellent support, similar end results to Mitch but more consistent
Broad to do the same on one occasion, but only one (being Broad)
Anderson to be fairly similar to Hoggard last time around - good but hardly destructive bowling. Has a bit of a problem with Watson, Pupter driving him with gay abandon.
Swann to be very good but not stellar by the fact that Pupter play off-spin at home just fine, thanks. Will have basically everyone else in all sorts of bother at various stages though.
(if you hadn't guessed). The top four will continue to carry our batting line-up. Watson and Katich will continue to make starts but frustratingly get out just as we start to look like we're in a strong position, forcing Pupter to go into rebuild mode (again). Should they both fail, collapse on the majority of occasions.
Collapses after the loss lead to North to get the axe, for Khawaja or Smith, depending on whether Hauritz has managed to survive (oh yeah, he'll perform adequately). Haddin should be nervous too.
The England batting lineup to look bizarrely similar, with the exception that we discover just how slowly Trott can score. This leads to one or two innings of supremity from KP in response, but mostly just brainsnaps. Strauss will be consistent... in getting 30-40's and getting out. The rest of the middle and top order will fire independently but there will be a fair share of collapses.
The series is decided when Ponting wins the SCG toss and bats.
(yeah, I got bored with saying "Ponting or Clarke")
3-1 to the good guys (that's Australia, not the Poms!)
Top runscorer: Watto, Pietersen
Top wicket-taker: Johnson, Swann
Dumpings: North, Haurie, Hussey, Bell, Finn
Debut/Return: Khawaja, Smith (sort of....), Harris, Tremlett
Surprise Packet: England taking the lead sometime in the Ashes.
2-1 to England
Leading Run Scorer: Kevin Pietersen; with Simon Katich taking it for Australia.
Leading Wicket-Taker: Mitchell Johnson; with Graeme Swann taking it for England
Dumpings: Marcus North; potentially Alastair Cook.
Debut/Return: Chris Tremlett to replace James Anderson; Steven Smith and Usman Khawaja to make appearances in the series for the Aussies.
Surprise Packet: Steven Finn to bowl beautifully, dominating Ponting all series.
2 wins a piece, Melbourne to be washed out.
Strauss to be England's best batsman, and pretty much this is why I see Australia not retaining the Ashes at this stage. He's the key player, if he has a good series it will be super tough to get the Ashes back.
North to be Man of the Series
Broad to own Ponting.
Bollinger to gun it.
Prior to be awesome.
2-1 to australia (wins at G and WACA for Aus.Dead rubber @sydney to England)
Shane watson with over 0.6k runs.
Mitch to take 20+ wickets.
Originally Posted by Spark
3-0 Australia (crawl to a draw in Brisbane and Adelaide, with scares in between)
Top runscorer - Watson (no centuries though), Trott
Top wicket taker - Mitch (by virtue of another freakish haul at either the WACA or MCG), Swann idk
Dumpings - North.
Debutant/Returning players - Hughes (!!!)
Surprise Packet - Hughes (!!!)
2-1 to England
Top runscorer - Strauss overall with Clarke for the convicts.
Top wickettakers - Johnson and Swann.
Dumpings - North and Hauritz.
Returningplayers/Debutants - Khawaja,Siddle and Hughes.
Surprise Package - Bell