Tight Ashes battle looms

London: The Ashes battle over the next northern summer now looks set to be a close-run thing, following an overnight decision by the English Cricket Board.

In a world exclusive, The Bug can reveal that the ECB has agreed to a request from the Australian Cricket Board that during the five-Test series, all of the visiting Australian batsmen will be allowed to be dismissed twice per innings.

A ECB spokesperson explained: “We had considered two other options: firstly, that the Aussies could bat defending only the one stump; and secondly that Englishmen when at the crease could be dismissed by all the usual ways but also by being caught out ‘one hand, one bounce’. But we thought those might be a little too favourable to the Aussies.”

While the “go out twice and you’re out” offer appears to be a very decent and kind one given the state of Australian men’s cricket in all forms of the game at the moment, it is, however, conditional on both Marsh brothers playing all Tests.