Why players sometimes underperform in the Ashes

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The Ashes isn’t like other series. It’s the same game, but batting averages and bowling averages mean so much less.

Runs or wickets against other Test nations give an idea how good a player is, but when it comes to the Ashes, you also need other qualities. The press and public in England and Australia suddenly go mental and the players know about it.

As Simon Jones says about the 2005 series:

“I lost eight kilograms just from nerves.”

That’s what a player’s contending with. The mind controls the body and there are some scrambled minds out on that cricket field.

If we had to go through it, we’d sabotage team mates’ equipment and cheerfully try and maim them with our return throws to help dispel the tension.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. He shouldn’t have announced it now unless he was going to walk now. Will hang over the whole series and make it v difficult for Strauss / Flower not to pick him if there are question marks over his fitness but he says he is fit to play. The honourable thing would have been to announce it when he was going.

  2. The King (not you KC) is dead! Long live the king! Anyone got Rikki Clarke’s phone number?

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