Former Test captain Tim Paine pointed out that Australia have the advantage over England in the Ashes, citing the tourists ability to play at different tempos compared to their hosts, who are content in playing an ultra-attacking form of play.
Captain Pat Cummins led Australia to a thrilling victory in the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston through an unbeaten 44 and a match-winning ninth-wicket stand of 55 with Nathan Lyon to chase down 281 on the last day at Edgbaston. Australia's win came following Ben Stokes' daring first-innings declaration on 393/8 on day one's play.
"I think (advantage) Australia as the series will go on and will get better and better. I think there was some clear strategy from both sides, whether it's attack or defence when a Test match goes for five days, you've got to be able to do both. With a series that goes for five Test matches, you're going to have to do both."
"I think from what I've seen earlier and what I thought going into the series, I think that's where Australia have got the advantage. They can play at different tempos, they can play different scenarios and I think their game will stand up in different conditions. England, we know are going to go one way, they're going to go really hard," said Paine to SEN Radio.
Paine revealed he had exchanged text messages with Cummins post the victory at Edgbaston. "I actually spoke to Pat Cummins by text yesterday. He said, 'We've got one back for us'. Yeah look, it was nice sitting on my couch."
"At 4 am in the morning I must admit, when Alex Carey got out and Nathan Lyon strolled to the crease, I contemplated going to bed because I didn't want to have to watch the English win."
"But gee, what a partnership, it was two experienced, hardened cricketers, two absolute winners. It was an amazing partnership and a great Test match to watch made even better by the fact that we're on the right side of it for once."
With Australia going into the second Test at Lord's starting from June 28 with a 1-0 lead in the five-game series, Paine feels many big guns who didn't shine at Edgbaston can come good in the upcoming matches.
"If I was being really harsh, I didn't think Australia played anywhere near their best either. Look at down the side, Pat Cummins came good in the second innings with the ball, but he wasn't at his best in the first innings, he's only going to get better as the series goes on."
"David Warner was ok, Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne both missed out, Scott Boland who's been amazing, had probably his first bad Test match. Nathan Lyon was fantastic, and Alex Carey was brilliant, but I think some of our big guns were below their best. I think we'll take a lot of confidence that I think we've got the right strategy," he concluded.