Cricket fans are waiting with bated breath for the return of the Ashes competition this year. But when and where are they happening, and what can we predict about the series?
This article will give a preview of when the ashes will be hosted, what we can expect and what fans have to look forward to.
When and Where
The Ashes this year are being held in Australian capital cities starting from November 2021 and finishes in January 2022.
- England and Australia first went head-to-head in a test match back in 1877. The regular matchups have become one of competitive sports' longest-running rivalries.
- In 1882 Australia defeated England for the first time in England at
the Oval. A mock obituary was printed in a satirical newspaper in 'remembrance of English cricket which died at the Oval'.
- Ever since the ashes of cricket balls have been placed in an urn and would be given to the winners of the match. The winners held the Ashes and would defend them from the opposing team next time round.
- The Ashes are hosted alternately between Australia and England.
England's Recent Ashes Form
- The last Ashes series resulted in a 2-2 draw, which meant that Australia held onto the urn.
- England's response to an inevitable Australian win after the fourth test was nevertheless impressive.
- Four wickets each from
Jack Leach and Stuart Broad, and another two from captain Joe Root meant that the side had every reason to feel positive.
- A huge win in the third test inspired by Ben Stokes left England in a great position.
- This was certainly better than the 2017-2018 competition when the Aussies rolled over England 4 – 0.
- England's recent form is sure to have a bearing on the next set of fixtures in Australia. Fans looking at tips for
cricket betting will be well advised to take note of previous meetings between the two sides.
Key Changes in England's Line Up
It has been predicted that there will be a lot of changes in the England side ahead of the next Ashes. This is despite the strong showing at the end of the last series to deliver the draw.
Here are some of the player who could figure significantly in the 2021/2022 Ashes:
- Hasan Azad is developing into a fine player. Capable of scoring a decent average by smothering attacks defensively, the Leicestershire opener is a good option for a defensive tactical play.
- Ben Stokes is now 30 years old and remains England's best hope for big scores. He's won nearly everything in the game, but the next Ashes could be his biggest yet. Last time round he prevented Australia from winning the Ashes with one of the greatest innings of all time to give England a one-wicket win in the third test.
If England can make sure he is not overworked and can step up to the innings fresh and strong, his dynamism could hold the key to an English victory.
- Ollie Pope had his first experience of test cricket last year. At 23, he is many commentators tip for becoming a consistent performer for England. Hard-working and resilient, Pope has made the art of edging out points in tough conditions a natural part of his game.
- Jofra Archer is known as one of England's true bowling stars. If the side can keep him at his best and not over-tire him through long 50-over games, the next Ashes could be the right stage for this most explosive of players.
- Joe Root. The captaincy of any side is always hotly debate and England is no different. At 30, Root still has a lot of cricket left in him, and despite a loss of recent form, is on his day a truly world-class batsman. He has the experience of international ups and downs to guide his side through the unexpected.
- Zak Crawley. Another promising young opener, Crawley stands at 6ft 6in with a strong batting style that is just as impressive. Recent experience of playing in Sydney last year where he scored a 100-ball century suggests that he could acclimatize to the next Ashes well.
England look well set for going one step better than last time round and winning the Ashes trophy back.
The heat of the Aussie summer and the intense schedule of matches is always a factor. Well trained and experienced players will be able to cope with this and bring the Ashes home to English soil.
The Ashes is one of cricket's oldest rivalries, pairing the two nations of England and Australia against each other with the winner getting all the plaudits – and the ashes.
Recent form suggests England could be in with a good shout of winning back the urn from the home team.
Australia will have other ideas. The side from down-under will be dead set on defending the trophy in front of their home fans.
It promises to be an exciting competition and, as the last Ashes proved, there are always surprises in store.