The Ashes is here! Australia has begun the five-test series with a bang in its bid to reclaim the urn it lost in 2015. Cricket fans are waiting to see how the legendary rivalry between the Poms and the Kangaroos will play out, but we’re more interested in these six players who are creating a buzz with their Ashes debut. Watch out for them!
This stylish left-hander made his debut in the series against the Windies this year on the back of some impressive form for Surrey. Cricket pundits are going gaga over his compact technique and say he’s the best man to partner Alastair Cook at the top of the order. No wonder since Stoneman scored a half-century in the first test of the series!
James Vince was a surprise selection and has a lot at stake when he takes the field. He played his part in the first test at Brisbane by scoring a patient 83 in the first innings. With an average of 19.27 in seven tests, his test career is yet to take off. He has consistently been scoring runs for Hampshire in the English county circuit.
A dour batsman, Dawid Malan is England’s first choice for the number five position. Malan cemented his place for the Ashes tour by playing a couple of good knocks against the Windies. He also underscored his potential by making a gritty half-century in the first test.
The Ashes could be a breakthrough series for Jake Ball who only has three tests under his belt. He hits the deck hard and is best suited for Australia’s bouncy pitches. Ball has been a regular member of the English one-day side and also picked up a five-for in a one day international against Bangladesh in 2016.
His selection ahead of regular opener Matt Renshaw raised quite a few eyebrows. Cameron Bancroft however has been in sensational form for Queensland in the domestic circuit. He continued with that streak by scoring a match-winning 82 in Australia’s impressive ten-wicket victory in the first test at Brisbane.
Peter Handscomb has now made the number five position his own. He joined the team after Australia’s disastrous summer last year when they lost the home series to South Africa. Handscomb had a good outing in the home series against Pakistan as well as in the tours of India and Bangladesh. He played a magnificent inning of 72 not out on a turning track to help Australia draw the third test against India. He also battled severe heat and humidity in Chittagong to play a gutsy match-winning knock in the second innings of the second test against Bangladesh.