England is not competing in the current Ashes, because England is “not playing”. The performances of its key stars, namely Alastair Cook, Joe Root, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, and Moeen Ali, can best be described by the reflexes of a deer caught in headlights.
Before their stumble in the away London derby game against West Ham, Chelsea had won six and drawn one of their previous seven matches, including the Alvaro Morata header-inspired 1-0 home victory over Manchester United.
If the victory at Wembley is anything go by, we can be sure that Chelsea are the champions of England not because of ideal circumstances of the previous season. They are champions because they can fight to win despite everything. And that’s why Antonio Conte’s Chelsea remains the team to beat.
Akshay Kumar is fast emerging as a very unlikely bearer of varied and content-driven Hindi cinema. His latest film - despite its shortcomings - could end up as a case study on development communication, or Communication for Development (C4D), in the Indian context.