Good morning from Brisbane! I happen to know that it is already late at night in the UK, and any other number of times in other zones around the world, but here from the Gabba it is a fresh new day with a fresh new pitch in the middle.
The Ashes! That old thing. Thank providence that it is beginning, so that I don’t have to write, nor do you have to read, any more preview pieces. From now on, we will have views and reviews only.
Everyone is out there on the ground: players, whole squads, coaches, umpires, ground staff, tractors, camera operators. There’s Haseeb Hameed with a bat under each arm, just in case. Cap backwards. Strutting. There’s Danny Reuben, talking media with the Channel Seven broadcast managers. Mike Hussey is out there in a suit, Adam Gilchrist in shirt sleeves. There are nets strung up for throw-downs. Eskies full of drinks. Hurdles and medicine balls. A circle of England players are heading a football around. There are strings of orange flags around the centre square. David Warner is standing on the centre wicket about where the stumps will go in, facing up with his bat and visualising.
It’s warm, it’s sweaty, it’s overcast, and it’s happening. I’m Geoff, hello.