Home > Features >

Mitchell Johnson and Brad Haddin kick-started the Ashes turnaround against England

Brad Haddin and Mitchell stitched a century partnership in the first Ashes Test against England © Getty Images
Mitchell Johnson (left) and Brad Haddin notched up half centuries against England in the first Ashes Test at the Gabba © Getty Images

Mitchell Johnson and Brad Haddin have been the heroes for Australia in the Ashes 2013-14. Nishad Pai Vaidya says that the duo turned the tables around and the set the tone for the series with a spirited rescue act in the first innings at Brisbane.

 

When England arrived Down Under, who would have imagined a 0-5 whitewash for the tourists? Who would have thought that a rejuvenated Mitchell Johnson would terrorise the Englishmen into submission with his thunderous pace, coupled with the menacing mustachioed looks? Australia’s comeback has been phenomenal; an unlikely story that unfolded spectacularly during the course of the five Tests. Having lost 0-4 in India and then 0-3 during the Ashes 2013 in England, Australia were the underdogs for the contest for the urn, Down Under.

However, the most unlikely stories are scripted by the most unfancied heroes. While, Australia have put in a team effort and numerous players have risen to the occasion in the hour of need. Brad Haddin and Johnson stand out, as they have been the real heroes of this triumph. It is mainly about the way they have comeback to help Australia win the Ashes and it is a tale that should inspire their compatriots in the future. Johnson was mocked and rubbished during the previous editions, but hit back like a juggernaut. On the other hand, Haddin had his share of problems and could only return to international cricket in 2013.

In many ways, Johnson has been the catalyst of the whole victory. He is the only addition to the attack that played in England and he made all the difference. With a small change in his bowling action and the extra pace, England were caught off-guard. During the Ashes 2013 in England, Australia’s attack bowled with spirit, Ryan Harris leading the way. However, they lacked the extra punch and Johnson did fit into the puzzle perfectly. His 37 wickets in five Tests tells the story, but more than the scalps, it is more about the fear he instilled during the series.

One could feel the need for the Englishmen to get off strike while facing Johnson. The searing pace, coupled with bounce had them in all sorts of problems. For Johnson, it is a resurrection. He had this unpredictable aura around him and hadn’t been a fixture in the Test side. With this performance, he had made a good comeback and should be a force to reckon with for some time.

Earlier this year, Haddin made a comeback during the Ashes in England and had to endure the heartbreak of losing the Nottingham Test by 14 runs. The rest of the Ashes was a forgettable experience for him and the team. So, when the series commenced Down Under, Haddin was in a different mould. England did have Australia in trouble a few times, but Haddin stood tall in every Test and scored at least a fifty in each game.

The duo combined together in the first Test to set the tone for the rest of the Ashes. When England reduced Australia to 132 for six on Day One at Brisbane, many felt it would be the same old story all over again. Haddin and Johnson had other ideas. In tandem, they scripted a 114-run stand that helped Australia come out of the muddle. Johnson scored 64, while Haddin missed his ton by a mere six runs, as he stretched Australia to 295. That was where it all started for Australia and at times, one may overlook such small moments in context of the series. However, such passages of play may have an unmistakable impact on the series.

Australia have shown their typical ruthlessness that was supposedly missing all the while. Perhaps, it was just a lull in the post transition era and any side would take its time to find its feet. But, this 5-0 victory is a platform for the Aussies and Michael Clarke to build a formidable side. This team is well and truly back to its old ways.

(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and anchor for the site’s YouTube Channel. His Twitter handle is @nishad_44)

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 20, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Kolkata

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 21, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Mount Maunganui

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Dubai

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (19:00 IST)   at Cuttack

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 24, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Mount Maunganui

More

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 17, 2014  at Dharamsala

India won by 59 runs

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 14, 2014  at Visakhapatnam

Match cancelled

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 12, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Australia won by 1 run

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 11, 2014  at Delhi

India won by 48 runs

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 10, 2014  at Dubai

Australia won by 5 wkts

Photos

India vs West Indies 4th ODI at Dharamsala

Videos

AB de Villiers speaks ahead of New Zealand ODIs

South Africa vs New Zealand 2014: 5 memorable matches

Yasir Shah: The new spinning sensation for Pakistan

Virat Kohli takes wicket with the first (0th?) ball of his T20I career

Kevin Pietersen’s autobiography — a litany of complaints with a few redeeming patches

Banning West Indian players in IPL can affect the ‘Brand value’ of the event – Will BCCI take this gamble?

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 BCCI India India vs West Indies India vs West Indies 2014 New Zealand Pakistan Salaam Cricket South Africa West Indies West Indies cancel India tour 2014 West Indies tour of India 2014 West Indies vs India West Indies vs India 2014

IPL success embodies emergence of sports as global industry, says India’s representative at UN

Live Cricket Score: New Zealand vs South Africa, 1st ODI at Mount Maunganui

Live Scorecard: New Zealand vs South Africa, 1st ODI at Mount Maunganui

Kevin Pietersen is probably the best cricketer I have played with: Eoin Morgan

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: SLC defend decision to tour

James Neesham can provide more impetus to New Zealand’s weakened batting up the order

Virender Sehwag turns 36: Five most memorable innings of the Nawab of Najafgarh

New Zealand begin ICC World Cup 2015 preparations with 15 ODIs in store

Virender Sehwag paid birthday tribute to by Sophos Antivirus

South Africa vs New Zealand 2014: 5 memorable matches

Fan of the Day

Gautam Singh

Gautam Singh

474 Posts | 5 Fans

Video Highlights Mohammed Yousuf drops catch after watching a girl in bikini

सेक्स टिप # 13: महिलाओं में कामेच्छा (low libido) की समस्या

आपकी दिवाली खुशनुमा, सुरक्षित और शुभ हो

iOS 8.1 update now available bringing Camera Roll, SMS Relay, iCloud Photo library among others

Movies to watch this week: Happy New Year!

Narendra Modi personified Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva of popularity at Madison Square Garden

IBM to pay $1.5 billion to GlobalFoundries to buy its chip division

Bigg Boss 8 highlights: RJ Pritam solves inmates problems while Ali Quli Mirza creates more on Day 29!

Dasvandh Network’s appeal to help reach goal of $80,000 to help Sikh cause in North America

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here