Image courtesy of: The Guardian
“England have become a strong side under Alastair Cook and they know how to win Test matches”
Legendary England captain David Gower is confident the national team will break their 25-year losing streak at the Gabba and hand Australia their first loss in Brisbane since November 1988.
Australia were last beaten in Brisbane by the West Indies ‘dream team’ in 1988.
“England are well organized and things seem to be clicking into place,” Gower said. “There’s something about Brisbane that makes it a hostile venue and if you aren’t ready for it you can be behind on the first morning. It’s hard to get back from there if the opposition are 100 for no wicket or you are 60 for 5.
“Their batsmen tend to be more adept to playing in those conditions at the start of the series, and that is one of the factors in them having that excellent record, I am sure.
“But England have become a strong side under Alastair Cook and they know how to win Test matches.”
Gower also believes that Michael Carberry could be a real asset for England throughout the historic series if he opens the batting alongside current captain Alastair Cook.
“Carberry has done everything right to make them think hard about him and he might prove a hard man to shift,” Gower said. “England need to look back to what they got wrong last time and learn from it. They got caught out a bit on that first day and had to work hard to recover.
“Touring teams are often caught out there because they are not so long off the plane and not really ready for the bounce.
“You have the climate against you too and you can pitch up from Hobart where the pitch is flat and the weather’s a lot cooler to somewhere where it’s going over the stumps and it’s humid.
“It’s good that they have started this tour well but I wouldn’t set my stall out on what has happened in the three warm-up games either way. England won the three pre-series matches last time and didn’t start well.”
While England may be looking extremely threatening at the moment, Gower stated that looks can be deceiving and recalled how his side went on the win the Ashes, despite having a horrendous build-up to the start of the series 27 years ago.
“The truth about the game we won there in 1986-87 was that no-one expected us to do it because we had been pretty crap for a month,” he said. “It took two or three outstanding individual performances from people and suddenly we were ahead of the game. There was no magic science to it, there were just a few players to get starts and it was topped off by a Beefy special.
“He destroyed Merv Hughes with the second new ball and from that point we were always ahead of the game.”