The Australian cricket team begins a series of five one-day internationals against England. It’s an anomalous series in many ways, since it doesn’t come on the back of a Test match series between the old rivals (called the Ashes), and it’s a sort of interlude before the big battle of the English summer: England versus their closest rivals in Test cricket, the South Africans.
Nonetheless, the Australia v. England match-up has a certain interest. The Australians are out for blood. Having been trounced by the English in the last two Ashes series (2009 and 2011), the Australians (who typically like to take revenge by slaughtering the English in the one-day internationals that follow) will want to beat the English up, in preparation for the Ashes series of 2013. The English, meanwhile, will want to show the Australians that they’re a much-improved one-day side (they are) and that they are on their way to becoming the number one side in the 50-over form of the game (as they are in the Test and Twenty20 forms).