Australia are the better side at the moment - Shane Warne
Legendary Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne reckons that Australia will be favourites to win the ongoing Ashes series.
Between the Australian Ashes clean-sweeps of 2006-07 and 2013-14, England won three series in a row, managing to defeat their rivals both home and away.
Warne feels that 2005 was the turning point for England, where they won an Ashes series for the first time in 18 years, which led to a period of English domination in the quest for the famed Urn.
“After what has happened in the last couple of Ashes series, we think back since 2005, when England won their first Ashes campaign for a long time.
“They were the better side and they played better cricket since then. They really dominated the Ashes series until the last series where Australia won 5-0.”
In the ignominious 5-0 defeat in 2013-14, England simply failed to turn up, as they were no match to Australia’s ascendancy, which was spearheaded by pacer Mitchell Johnson.
Warne was of the notion that England’s failure to put up a fight in their defeat was the sole reason why they faced immense criticism.
“Australia absolutely pulverised England, who were not good enough and did not show fight, which I think disappointed the fans out there.
“They rolled over after the first couple of test matches and that is why I think there was such an uproar about England losing 5-0.”
Meanwhile, after the famed 5-0 victory in the 2013-14 Ashes series, Australia returned to their best, going on to beat South Africa in their own backyard, while winning series against India at home.
Australia also retained the Frank-Worrell Trophy against the West Indies, whereas the only blip in their performance was the series defeat to Pakistan in 2014.
The 45-year-old Warne expressed that Australia have become a much better team since the 3-0 Ashes defeat in 2013, while refusing to discount England, who play in home conditions.
Despite England’s obvious home advantage, Warne expects Australia to win the series as they have a better captain and a better team to boot.
“In this Ashes series, home conditions for England, they will come out fighting, they will be hurting about the last Ashes series. But I just think Australia are in such better shape.
“The 3-0 victory that England won in England before the 5-0 whitewash, was very flattering and they played that well, Australia weren’t just good enough.
“But I think Australia have that experience now. Michael Clarke’s captaincy is so much better than Alastair Cook’s.
“Having all that, with the way Australia are playing, beating South Africa in South Africa after the Ashes series.
“I think they (Australia) would win even in England conditions. They are just the better side at the moment.
Australia will be attempting to win their first Ashes series in England in almost 14 years, while looking to retain the urn, in the ongoing contest between the two rivals.
© Cricket World 2015