It’s been a funny few weeks of cricket, culminating in the most controversial slash since Guns ‘N’ Roses were banned from the city of St Louis. But just as thoughts began to turn towards the County Championship again (and the return leg of the Ashes), they are interrupted by the part of the giantmegaseries that everyone was secretly really looking forward to after all: the T20s featuring James Tredwell.
For those of you of a betting disposition (that’s Aussie Matt then), have a wager on how soon it is before a commentator – Nick Knight inevitably – describes the games as being all a bit ‘after the Lord Mayor’s show’. Who the hell enjoys the Lord Mayor’s show, apart from, presumably, the Lord Mayor? Anyway, the Rose Bowl and Riverside are the lucky grounds hosting the battle of the post-apocalyptic cricketing cockroaches that in no way will look like the streets of London on 10th November.
England will no doubt talk up their game: Ashley Giles will be keen to show he is not just an Andy Flower underling and captain Stuart Broad eager to put behind him all the silly business of not walking/cheating and pissing on the pitch/just giving the cock a bit of an airing. The team selection is pretty straightforward for T20s, with the only real choices being whether Michael Carberry plays (and instead of which of the Nottinghamshire openers) and how many batsmen they’ll pick to bowl four overs between them (probably two from Joe Root, Luke Wright and Ravi Bopara). There may be a debate about which of Jade Dernbach or Boyd Rankin plays, but both are so uninspiring we’d rather not mention either.
Meanwhile Australia have managed the extraordinary and managed to find some players not scarred by the 3-0 Ashes defeat. Four of those are likely to form the middle order, including captain George Bailey, whilst Clint ‘Grunter’ McKay supplements the bowling. But of course the main point of note is the re-re-re-reselection of Mitchell Johnson, giving England fans an unmatched list of bad eggs to jeer. With Glenn Maxwell, Shane Watson, David Warner, James Faulkner, Johnson and Matthew Wade all probable selections, it really will be like some kind of shit Lord Mayor’s show.