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The Ashes 2023: SWOT Analysis of England

The Ashes hold immense importance for English cricket. The series is one of the oldest and most iconic rivalries in the history of the sport, dating back to 1882 when Australia won a Test match against England on English soil for the first time.

Since then, the Ashes series has become a symbol of intense competition and national pride for both England and Australia. Winning the Ashes is considered a significant achievement for any English cricket team. The top bookmakers have Test match odds with them.

The importance of the Ashes is also reflected in the impact it can have on players' careers, team morale, and public perception. The last time when these two teams in the Ashes set up, England was under the leadership of Joe Root and Australia completely dominated the series by 4-0.

It ended Root’s run as a captain for England and the dynamics of the team also changed. Brendon McCullum became the new coach of English cricket and Ben Stokes became the new leader of the team. Together, the two introduced aggression in England’s Test cricket, and things look positive for the hosts this year. Ben Stokes will be hoping for a series win and to stun the WTC Champions.

SWOT Analysis of England Cricket Team

Strength

England’s strength lies in two segments- Batting and Bowling. They have immense depth in their opening lineup and their bowlers have done a great job in the past. The opening trio, Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, and Ollie Pop are in the best of their form. They performed exceptionally well against Ireland in a one-off Test. In the bowling department, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, and Ollie Robinson have bowled ferociously in the past against New Zealand and Ireland. England has also received an extra push with Moeen Ali coming back from retirement. The spin maestro will be fulfilling the void created by Jack Leach’s absence.

Weakness

The biggest weakness of England right now is their unpredictable middle order. The middle order will have Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Harry Brook, and Jonny Bairstow. All four players are world-class batters but Ben Stokes is struggling with his form. He was seen losing his wicket easily against New Zealand. Jonny Bairstow is making his comeback to international cricket and he will be facing an Australian bowling attack hence it might not be a positive outing for him. Harry Brook and Joe Root will be under immense pressure to handle the innings for the team if the opening order fails to give a solid start.

Opportunity

The most significant opportunity for Team England is the comeback of Moeen Ali in the squad. Moeen Ali announced his Test retirement in September 2021 but since the day Brendon McCullum became the coach, there were rumours about Ali’s return to the longest format of the game. After Jack Leach’s injury, Moeen Ali was the next best option for England for the upcoming Ashes series. Moeen is a skilled allrounder and can be used in the lower order to give a push to the overall score as well.

Threat

Australian pacers are the biggest threat to England in the upcoming Ashes series. If England loses their opening lineup at an early stage in front of the Aussie attack, the pressure will be on the middle order to handle the innings. This might create chaos in the team and England might be in a difficult situation. Expectations are high from Harry Brook and Joe Root but Ben Stokes’ dwindling form is another issue for the team.

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