Ashes Third Test Preview
We look ahead at this summer's third Ashes Test and breakdown all the key stats, odds and betting information
After a pulsating pink ball Test, Australia now has the opportunity to regain the famous urn in Perth. Much like the 1st Test, the tourists competed with the Baggygreens for much of the match in Adelaide and on final day even found themselves in a position to push for the win. However, the Aussies snuffed out any glimmer of hope England had with a clinical performance with the ball on the last day. The big question now being asked of England is how they will handle Australia’s four man bowling attack in perhaps the most pace-friendly conditions in the country. In this series, England averages a relatively modest 239.5 runs per innings and it is expected that they will need to find a way to substantially improve that number if they’re any hope of springing the upset.
3 KEY POINTS
- AUSTRALIA’s record at the WACA across their last five Tests is 2-1-2.
- ENGLAND has won only one of their 13 Tests at the WACA.
- AUSTRALIA has lost the toss in four of their last five Ashes Tests.
- AUSTRALIA has won their last seven home Tests against England.
- AUSTRALIA has won seven consecutive Ashes Tests at the WACA.
- STEVE SMITH has scored two centuries in his last three Tests against England.
- Shaun Marsh’s career-defining century in Adelaide was perhaps the biggest difference between the sides. A study in playing every ball on its merits, the knock will be long remembered in the annals of Ashes history. In that respect, it’s impossible to look past the value on the left-hand bat to be the Aussie top scorer in the first innings. Averaging 38.88 in Test cricket, he has not been dismissed in single figures this Ashes campaign, notching up scores of 51, 126 and 19. Fellow West Australian Cameron Bancroft is perhaps the man to watch though given his last score at this venue was an unbeaten double century for his state side. Although he suffered twin failures in the 2nd Test, the right hand bat has looked comfortable at the crease and he’ll be determined to post his maiden hundred in front of his home crowd.
For England, Joe Root again shapes as the man to back, but Dawid Malan certainly has claims. The left hander has proved dependable at the crease for England this tour, recording scores of 19, 29, 56, 4, 109, 63, 5.
Although his returns from the 2nd Test aren’t extraordinary, Pat Cummins was perhaps the best of the Aussie bowlers in Adelaide. The highly rated paceman has 28 wickets in seven Tests at a very respectable average of 25.96. With the ability to bowl 150km/h, the right arm quick is expected to pose all sorts of problems for the England top order including skipper Joe Root who Cummins has dismissed four times in five matches (all formats).
Turning to the poms, Chris Woakes may be well worth considering. The swing bowler took four second innings wickets with the pink Kookaburra and if he can find a way to use the Fremantle doctor to his advantage, another big haul isn’t out of the question.
High Bat: Cameron Bancroft (Aust.)
Wickets: Stuart Broad (Eng.)
Value picks: Moeen Ali (Eng.) to score 50+ & Pat Cummins (Aust.) to be the player of the match