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Justin Langer's key moments

Justin Langer
By Justin Langer
Australia batting/leadership coach

Andrew Strauss and Alistair Cook
Strauss and Cook both made centuries on day four and are now England's all-time record opening pair

Day three's partnership between Mike Hussey and Brad Haddin was described, by yours truly, as 'worth celebrating, unless of course you are a supporter of the team on the receiving end of the punishment.'

Well on day four, and just to prove I wasn't being a gloating Australian, I will reinforce the point that partnerships of such magnitude are powerful to the prospects of a team's success; while still maintaining that they are heartache to the opposition's supporters.

Hard as it is to say, as one of those opposition supporters, Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook were brilliant.

They have formed a formidable opening partnership over the last few years, and it is no wonder England are on the up with them at the helm.

Even before becoming an opening batsmen myself, I was always of the view that a strong opening partnership is an extremely important component of the most successful teams.

On Sunday, Strauss and Cook surpassed Herbert Sutcliffe and Jack Hobbs as the most prolific opening partnership in English cricket history, an achievement of which they should be proud.

Painful as this was to watch, I respect what they are doing for England and I know that unless Australia can find a way of disturbing their partnerships from now until the final Test then we could be in for a long hard summer.

After the first day, my prediction was that this series would be an arm wrestle. This has proved once again how tight we can expect the series to be.

Once upon a time England would have rolled over and the Test would have been over. This Strauss-led team looks like they have more bottle than some of their predecessors and we know we are in for a good old-fashioned fight with our oldest rival.

From Brisbane


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