With 11 Ashes series in the next three years, this one-day series between England and Australia is the only real hors d’oeuvre. It’s just steak and duck breast after this, albeit with slightly more potatoes than you’d probably want in an ideal world.
As everyone knows, hors d’oeuvres aren’t for enjoying; they’re for getting a few early punches in, putting doubt in your opponent’s mind. Or maybe we’re going to the wrong restaurants. Either way, we’re going to try and pick the meaningful Ashes scuffles out of this dish and then we’re going to apply meaning to them where there blatantly isn’t any.
All good early blows come before the bell and the mumbling, blond behemoth of surprising physical fragility, Shane Watson, has always got something to say.
“Pat Cummins is a very highly skilled young man. No doubt he will be a handful, especially for the English who haven’t seen him much. That will be a nice little wildcard for us.”
Yeah, it’ll be a nice little wildcard for you THIS TIME. At the end of this interminable one-day series, England’s batsmen will have seen plenty of him, so the joke’s on you, Watto and Cummo.
‘Cummo’ is definitely his nickname. Don’t let him tell you otherwise.