VietnamSurprise – Less than three months ago, Alastair Cook lifted the Ashes urn after a 3-0 win over Australia. It was a proud moment, but it was also a sad one.
It came after the English cricket team were denied the chance of another probable win at the Oval last month. Relations between the old adversaries were frosty throughout the series. This wasn’t made any better by claims that the Australian side was deliberately interfering with the game’s digital scoring system, says Telegraph journalist Stuart Broad.
Nevertheless, England played extremely well and did an awful lot to deserve their Ashes win. Unfortunately, it’s already time to defend it. This year and next, the presence of the ICC Cricket World Cup will mean that the Ashes are held just three months apart. In November, Cook and his team will travel to Australia to fight for another chance to lift the urn, says BBC Sport expert Sam Sheringham.
All five of the test matches will be held in Australia, but that won’t stop dedicated cricket fans from flying out to support their team. In fact, there’s no reason why a fan should let a little distance prevent them from watching one of the most important competitions in the sporting calendar. Holidays to Australia are surprisingly affordable these days – accommodation is cheap and plentiful and return flights can be bought for as little as £450.
The amount that you pay for your accommodation will depend entirely on what it is that you’re looking for. Like anywhere else in the world, Australia has some extremely cheap hostels and budget hotels. It also has a wide range of upmarket boutique and design hotels. Then, there’s the option to rent holiday apartments, cottages or villas. Generally speaking, there’s accommodation to suit every budget in this part of the world.
If you’ve already got your Ashes tickets, start looking for your accommodation now. The first test match of the 2013/2014 run is just under two months away, so you’d better get a move on. It’s never a good idea to leave details like your accommodation until the very last minute – do your research and get in there early. Booking nice and early with companies like 321 Travel can mean the difference between a relaxed break and a hectic, stressed out one.
If you’re taking young children along for the ride, it’s probably best to avoid communal hostels and backpacking hotels. These establishments aren’t at all dangerous, but they’re not really designed for youngsters. They can be noisy, cluttered and quite busy at times. However, if you’re not travelling with youngsters and you do want a budget hotel – by all means, go for a hostel or backpackers hotel.
There are lots of them in Melbourne and they offer rooms for as little as £20 per night. Most are surprisingly attractive – people tend to get the wrong impression about hostels. They think that they’re dirty and dangerous when in actual fact, they often come hand in hand with elegant roof gardens, private pools and well designed sleeping areas. Don’t let the communal aspect of a hostel put you off, say the experts at Rocky Travel. Having to share a room with a couple of strangers is surely worth saving hundreds of pounds in accommodation costs?
If you’ve still got doubts about budget hostels and hotels, why not look for an inexpensive boutique hotel? These establishments are often a lot cheaper than people expect and the service is much better, too. Sometimes, a smaller environment can be miles better than a big chain hotel. Finding accommodation in time for the Australian Ashes won’t be difficult – it’s finding the right accommodation that takes time.
George Babbington is a journalist and editor of a sport and lifestyle magazine. In November, he plans to travel to Australia with the help of 321 Travel. He can usually be found reviewing games or re-watching games at home – much to the fury of his long suffering wife.