TORMENTOR IN CHIEF: Shane Warne and wicketkeeper Ian Healy appeal for the dismissal of England’s Alec Stewart at the Oval in 1997, Adam Hollioake’s last for England against Australia.
TORMENTOR IN CHIEF: Shane Warne and wicketkeeper Ian Healy appeal for the dismissal of England’s Alec Stewart at the Oval in 1997, Adam Hollioake’s last for England against Australia. REBECCA NADENAAP

England can continue dominance: Hollioake

FORMER England all-rounder Adam Hollioake never got to savour the sweet success of an Ashes series win in his short four-Test career.

Hollioake made his debut in the fifth Test of the 1997 series at Nottingham's Trent Bridge, a series won 3-2 by Australia under skipper Mark Taylor.

The Englishman scored 45 and 2, and also took the wickets of Ricky Ponting and Ian Healy, as the tourists clinched the series with a 264-run win.

England reduced the deficit by winning the final Test at The Oval by 19 runs, in what proved to be Hollioake's last Test against Australia, but it was too little, too late.

Australia had won another series, a fifth consecutive, and its stranglehold over England would continue for another three series.

But now the shoe is firmly on the other foot, and Hollioake, who also played 35 ODIs, captaining the side to victory in the 1997 Sharjah Cup, England's first tournament success for 10 years, told APN he was sure Alastair Cook's side would continue England's dominance win a fourth consecutive series.

"The Aussie side I played against was probably one of the greatest ever - any side containing the Waugh twins, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, and Ponting was always going to be hard to beat," he said.

But that was then and this is now, and Hollioake, who now lives on the Gold Coast, said he could not see today's Aussie side being as intimidating or as hard-nosed as the one he played against.

"There are a couple of blokes in the Aussie side who look like they would get in your face, but none as good as those I had the privilege to have words with," he laughed.

"There was never a shortage of encouragement from Warnie and co."

As for a result, Hollioake said England would win, but not by the 3-0 margin in England a few months ago.

"I don't think the final score reflected what went on in the series," he said.

"The Aussies had more bad sessions than England, but saying that, that is a sign of the quality of the England team at present.

"I reckon it will be 2-1 to England." While England will not name its third fast bowler to partner James Anderson and Chris Broad until the coin toss on Thursday morning, Hollioake said he knew who he would take into the heat of battle.

"Chris Tremlett is the main man as far as I am concerned - he has the hostility to terrorise any batting line-up.

"He took 17 wickets in three Tests the last time he played down here - I say let him at them again."



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