Ashes 2019: SWOT analysis of Australia's squad
Australia hold the aces as far as the Ashes Tests are concerned. In 330 Tests, Australia have won 134 and lost 106, with 90 ending in draws. In terms of series, Australia have won 33 of the 70 contested, England have won 32 and 5 series have ended in draws.
Since the year 2005, England have dominated Australia in the Ashes - especially at home. Australia last won an Ashes series in England 18 years ago, in the year 2001. England beat Australia by a margin of 2-1 in 2005, 2-1 in 2009, 3-0 in 2013 and 3-2 in 2015.
The 2019 Ashes will be a tough contest between two well-balanced teams who have had their moments of ups and downs in Test cricket over the last year or so. England lost the Test series to West Indies early this year and Australia lost a home series to India for the first time in early 2019.
Australia have named a 17-man squad for the Ashes which is as follows:
Tim Paine (Captain), Cameron Bancroft, Pat Cummins, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazelwood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Steven Smith, David Warner, Matthew Wade and Mitchell Starc.
Here is a SWOT analysis of Australia' squad for the 2019 Ashes.
Strength: Experienced bowling unit
The main strength of the Australian team for the 2019 Ashes is the experience in their bowling attack. The likes of Pat Cummins, Josh Hazelwood, Nathan Lyon, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle and Mitchell Starc have considerable experience of playing Test cricket and have battled it out against England on several occasions in the past.
The fast bowling trio of Cummins, Starc and Hazelwood has tasted substantial success as a bowling combination. And Nathan Lyon as a sole spinner has single-handedly led Australia to victory on numerous occasions.
Starc has picked up 29 Test wickets in England while Hazelwood has 16 in England. Cummins in his start-stop Test career has not played a Test in England but he has played international cricket for a period of almost nine years and will look to add to his tally of 94 Test wickets.
Lyon enjoys bowling in England and has 25 wickets to his name in the country. The likes of Pattinson and Siddle have also played Test cricket in England. Pattinson has played 2 Tests in England, picking up 7 wickets, and Siddle has picked up 43.
The Australian pace attack is an experienced one which will look to take full advantage of the brittle English top and middle order. If the pace bowlers pick up early wickets, Lyon will tough to negotiate for the English batsmen.
All in all, the bowlers are Australia's strength in the upcoming Ashes. Moreover, the likes of Starc, Cummins and Lyon can also score handy runs lower down the order if and when required.
Also read – Ashes Highest Total chased