preparing to failOH the hilarity! The Ashes finally kicks off this week and just when we thought the Aussie preparation couldn’t get any worse, they went and stepped it up a notch.

Last Wednesday, all nine of the Australian team’s potential starting batsman were in action in one way or another – either in the domestic game against local opposition or playing England in the Australia A team.

Over the course of the day, they made a combined total of 120. Arf! That’s a combined total of nine batsmen – no bowlers – and they still made a shit total.

Admittedly, Simon Katich (right) had to come off on one run after hurting his shoulder, and the injured Michael Clarke didn’t play but you’d think at least one of their stars would have made a decent total.

Only Steve Smith, who is possibly further down the batting pecking order than anyone else and incredibly unlikely to face England next Thursday, was the only one to come away with any respect after tonking England for 59. Apart from that, Michael Hussey, Ricky Ponting, Callum Fergsuon, Marcus North etc, etc all failed to make it past 20.

England weren’t doing particularly well either in the final preparation game, to be fair, at the time of going to press, but we don’t really have any pressure on us and the match was heavily rain effected. It’s all good fun whatever way you look at it.