Date: December 8-12, 2021
Time: 5:30 AM IST start
Venue: The Gabba, Brisbane
Preview: After getting one of the hardest tormenting at the venue at the start of the ongoing year, Australia will once again be playing a Test match at the Gabba, Brisbane. And this time the opponents are none other than their bitter-rivals England. The Ashes series 2021-22 kicks off with this match with Australia being led by a new captain in the form of Pat Cummins. Meanwhile, England will be captained by their regular Test skipper Joe Root.
Pitch Report: The surface at the venue in the last Test that took place between India and Australia was found to be one of the best tracks for competitive cricket. It offered help to bowlers as well as batters even till the final ball of the game. The pitch of Gabba is quite famous for its carry and bounce and hence fast bowlers are, for sure, going to have a good outing in the middle. Batters who like to play it late and on the backfoot may enjoy the game better than those who love to play the ball from the front foot.
Australia: A lot has happened in the Australian camp in the recent past. From Tim Paine stepping down to Pat Cummins' appointment as the Test skipper of the side, it wouldn't be wrong to say that Australian cricket has had one of the hardest times. However, now it is time for them to perform and make all the ruckus a matter of past. Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Cummins will have a lot of responsibility on their shoulders considering the nature of the wicket. Meanwhile, incoming wicketkeeper-batter Alex Carey has a good opportunity to perform at the Test format and justify his inclusion. After a lot of contemplation, Travis Head has finally been given the number 5 batting spot.
England: The return of Ben Stokes in the set-up must have given a sigh of relief to the Three Lions, especially the remarkable performance of the star player in the previous Ashes series between the sides. James Anderson, Ollie Robinson and Mark Wood will be the key bowlers to watch out for. Despite the game being just three days away, Joe Root and side are yet to announce the playing XI. The skipper said that the side will observe the pitch more in the upcoming days and will then decide about the playing combination, which they confirmed this morning.
Probable Playing XIs:
Australia (Confirmed): David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins (c), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood
England: Joe Root (c), Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Haseeb Hameed, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood
Conclusion: It is expected to be an evenly contested game between the two sides. However, the home advantage may help Australia a bit better in the game. They will have an edge over the guests, but England too are a quality team and the possibility of their win cannot be ruled out.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the author's personal point of view. They neither reflect the opinion of SportsTiger nor advise anyone to make any prediction based on this. SportsTiger does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.