Adelaide: For someone who has experienced the dizziest of heights and endured the bleakest of lows in a topsy-turvy career, Mitchell Johnson’s ability to torture England for a second straight Ashes Test propelled the paceman to a higher plain on Saturday.
Man of the match in the opening win at the Gabba with nine wickets and a half-century, Johnson completed a stunning seven-wicket haul at the Adelaide Oval on Day III to rout England for 172 in their first innings, putting Australia within reach of an improbable 2-0 lead in the five-match series.
Away from the bouncy Gabba wicket, some had expected Johnson to struggle in Adelaide, mindful of the bowler’s history of following up wrecking ball performances with almost comical efforts of erratic bowling in subsequent matches.
But Johnson, on Saturday, gave a glimpse of a tantalising future where adjectives like ‘wayward’ and ‘enigmatic’ would have no place ahead of his name.
“To be able to back up a performance like in Brisbane and to do it here is a really nice feeling for me,” Johnson said, stroking the moustache he grew for charity.
“I guess there’s been talk in the past where I can have those performances, like I can blow a team away in one game and in the next, not turn up. So for me, I think that’s why it was a bit more emotional and special.
“It was because I was able to stick to my plans and go through with it.
“The ball came out of my hand exactly the way I wanted it to. There was a bit of talk of me not hitting the stumps at Brisbane. But I was excited about the variable bounce and the reverse swing that Adelaide provides,” said Johnson. (AGENCIES)