What a test match at Lords.
I was actually quite pleased for Alistair Cook that England got the win in the end. The media barrage that he would have faced had England not taken that last wicket would have been huge.
In my opinion that would have been wrong. I hada flick on to Twitter yesterday morning and all I could see was everyone complaining about how England were still batting. Cool can't win, he went through a lean patch - everyone on his back for not scoring runs. He then goes back to back hundreds and everyone is on his back for his captaincy!
I guess it goes with the territory of leading England in any sport...Everyone is going to have an opinion on it. It proved to be the correct decision from Alistair, England had 18 overs to take that last wicket and yet if the didn't take it, who would they have pointed the finger at? Jimmy Anderson, Mo Ali? Not a chance it would have been straight to Cook for not declaring earlier...
Exactly how long would a bowling attack need to take the tenth wicket. That's why I was pleased for him. I think he is a decent guy who wants the best for English cricket. He has to make tough decisions and sometimes they won't be popular but he is an honest guy and I think sometimes people can lose sight of the fact that should count for a lot.
It's going to be such a challenging summer for English cricket with The Ashes and the force that the Australian cricket team have become. I'm certainly no fan of the English cricket team but I also think that a lot of criticism is unfair.
Obviously the way they performed in the World Cup was unacceptable and it was more the brand of cricket and the tactics that came under scrutiny than the fact that they were losing games and not qualifying for the knock out stages but in actual fact, after the ashes down under they have played some reasonable test cricket.
They hammered a very good Indian team last summer off the back of a close fought series with Sri Lanka and then won 80% of the sessions in the Caribbean only to walk away with a drawn series.
With Strauss taking over he is going to want to put his own stamp on things and it looks like Trevor Bayliss being appointed as head coach will be the first act. Maybe that falls in to them wanting to perform better in limited overs cricket. He has extensive experience with coaching in white ball, leading Sri Lanka to a World Cup final in 2011, winning the IPL with Kolkata and the Big Bash with the Sixers. I guess all those things would have had an impact on Strauss' decision.
Couple that experience with the clear mental resolve of the captain and I actually think they will have a pretty good team in charge. They are going to need it for the ashes series this summer because This Australian team are one hell of a side.
In the past England could maybe have backed themselves to produce slightly bowler friendly conditions and back their batsmen's skill to ply the moving ball better than the Aussies but with a pace attack including Johnson, Starc, Harris, Hazelwood and Siddle I'm not sure that will be the way forward.
Ryan Harris for me, is the one that can exploit the conditions better than anyone. He has the pace to trouble batters if the ball isn't moving around and if it is, there aren't many better to capitalise on that.
With that first win out of the way for Captain Cook it will give them that little bit of breathing space, take pressure off and allow them to play with some freedom. They are going to need everything they've got to take on the Aussies.