I love it, but I hate it. Gideon Haigh captures the opening of the cracks and exposes the weaknesses of the England side as it begins to crumble from domination to miserable, abject failure in the full glare of the Antipodean sun and in the face of the relentless revival of the Australian cricket team.
Not being an ex-professional cricketer adds value to Haigh's dispassionate and unflinching analysis. He has no axe to grind with any old changing room buddies, no allegiances to betray and so he gives praise and criticises freely with a wry, unforced humour.
Haigh can pack plenty of detail into very few words. No cliches, nor glib comments. Each sentence flows with the grace of a left-handed No 3 in his prime. Australians will love this account of their team's return to Ashes domination.