The Rivalry That Unites Us

The UTS Ashes Cordon

The Gabba, day three

The first Test of any new series is always supposed to be an examination in alien conditions. That the first test of this Ashes series took place only three months after UK series finished meant that the narrative of a ‘home and away’ series accentuated the sense that different rules applied this time around. As such, the narrative in the lead up to the match in Brisbane – especially from the Australian team, media and public – was of how things would be markedly different to the 3 nil losing series just past. Not just the end result, but also the means to that result: bouncier pitches[1], batting-friendly conditions[2], a more settled Australian team[3] and an England team over reliant upon older players near to the end of their careers[4].

It even suited the English to portray the upcoming series as one between…

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Pulp Fictions

The UTS Ashes Cordon

There has been a relative deluge of cricketing autobiographies in the gap between the two Ashes series. Mike Hussey, Ricky Ponting, Andrew Strauss and even Michael Clarke have all put their experiences out to print.  

To a greater or lesser extent they have served to line the pockets of the individual authors, publishers and the news media as they add to the off-field skirmishes that rage inbetween the ‘real’ battles that will now take place in Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Melbourne and Sydney.

But who has the time to read them all? One man has done, so you don’t have to. Step forward Gideon Haigh, author of 18 cricket books and a regular columnist in The Australian newspaper.

Here are his thoughts on each of the tomes:

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