October 18, 2010

Ashes 2010-11

Barmy Army faces expensive Ashes

Abhishek Purohit

The Barmy Army - that merry group of travelling England fans - are facing a hindrance to their expected revelry in Australia during the Ashes from unexpected quarters, the currency market. The Australian dollar appreciated considerably against major international currencies recently, and a British pound is now worth just A$1.60, compared with more than A$2 last year. The trip to Australia will now cost 36% more for England fans, according to a report in the Guardian. It means pricier hotels, meals, transport, match tickets and, crucially, beer.

Dave Peacock, one of the founding members of the Barmy Army, was unfazed and said the relative weakness of Australia's team made up for the increased strength of its dollar. "The dollar might be lot stronger, but the Australian team is nowhere near as strong as it was four years ago, and our team is on the way up. This is probably the best opportunity we've had since 1986-87. People aren't going to like paying £5 a pint. I think they will still go to Australia, but maybe cut down on a couple of pints a night."

Four years ago, 30,000 England fans travelled to Australia to watch their team getting thrashed 5-0.

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Abhishek Purohit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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