Ashes Diary: Humiliated – by a bunch of third-raters

It didn't take long: the "Oh, didn't the Poms play well?" consensus that has infected the Aussie press these last few days has been broken. "It's one thing to be flogged by the once mighty West Indies after the upheaval of World Series Cricket and rebel tours of South Africa," Malcolm Conn writes in The Australian. "It is quite another to be humiliated by a third-ranked nation which has one superstar, the South African-born Kevin Pietersen."

Captain usurped as poster boy for T20

Michael Clarke might be feeling pretty pleased with himself, what with being Australia's skipper for the fifth Test, but he shouldn't get too comfy. The posters advertising the forthcoming Twenty20 series Down Under feature the England T20 captain, Paul Collingwood, and Australia's Shane Watson – not Clarke, who is Australia's long-term captain in that form of the game.

Sydney Test found dead on arrival

So, that American woman who's called @theashes on Twitter has landed in Sydney despite her problems with the New York weather. Ashley Kerekes – as she's known to pals – is there to see the fifth Test. "I'm really excited even though Australians are pretty bummed," she said at Sydney Airport. "I think they call it a dead rubber or something like that." No, we call it long-overdue revenge.

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