Like a couple of hoary stags in a South Australian deer rut, Ian Botham and Ian Chappell revived an ancient feud and locked antlers in the Adelaide Oval car park yesterday. The spectacle of two pensionable commentators taking each other forcibly by the lapels may be considered unedifying, but at least it provides a constant in this strange new Ashes dawn. England‘s successes on tour have been met with bleary-eyed jubilation in this country, but the rate of change from the normal status quo Down Under has accelerated to the point of nausea. So if some of the old guard want to stage their own Ian-only battle re-enactment from 1977 then all the more comforting.
It’s a vague pity that onlookers chose to intervene and prevented something more visceral developing. My suspicion is that based on having more faculties intact, Botham would have won through on a points decision. But Chappelli would have put up a good scrap. Better than his countrymen at least.