The Best of Tests: Australia register third whitewash in Ashes history in 2013-14
Test cricket mirrors life. The ebbs and flows of the format have given birth to some of the most breath-taking cricketing epics. A Cricket World Series, The Best of Tests, highlights the finest of these spectacles.
Ashes 2013-14 - Australia win 5-0
Player of the Match - Ryan Harris
Player of the Series - Mitchell Johnson
Warwick Amrstrong did it in 1920-21, Ricky Ponting did it in 2006-07 and the distinction of inflicting a whitewash in an Ashes series came Michael Clarke's way in 2013-14.
The architect of Australia's 5-0 win was Mitchell Johnson who was rightly awarded the Man of the Series. The pacer bagged 37 wickets in the series, the most by a left-arm bowler in any 5-match series. This included three 5-wicket hauls, with 7/40 at Adelaide being the best of the lot. Once he set up Australia's win at the Gabba, there was no coming back for England from there on.
After England registered a 3-0 win in the last Ashes, a whitewash for them came out of nowhere. It was the formidable bowling from Johnson, rub of the green not going their way at crucial moments and mental disintegration that led to the downfall.
It did not help that Jonathan Trott pulled out of the tour due to mental illness and Graeme Swann retired mid-series as well.
Alastair Cook had been sensational with 766 runs the last time he toured Australia. But in the 2013-14 Ashes, he could manage a tally of just 246. He averaged 127 in 2010-11 and only 24 this time! Kevin Pietersen also let down the fans.
Stuart Broad fought hard with 21 wickets, but he didn't get the support he would have desperately wished for. That James Anderson, the supposed leader of the pack, picked one wicket less than Ben Stokes, tells a tale in itself, doesn't it?
England went on to win the 2015 Ashes 3-2.
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