Even so, no amount of over-familiarity can rob the Ashes – and particularly the first day of the Ashes – of its often almost unbearable tension. It’s a cliché and an oversimplification to say that the opening exchanges set the tone for the whole series but, as Steve Harmison will reluctantly testify, they can be pretty significant.
So with that in mind, spare a thought for England’s Michael Carberry who, as we wrote this, looked like a nailed-on certainty to open the batting with Alastair Cook and earn his second Test cap at the age of 33. Likely to be much closer than recent clashes between the two teams and certain to be enthralling.
This swanky bar and restaurant is the most recent culinary addition to the Taj 51 Buckingham Gate Suites and Residences - a five-star hotel attached to Quilon and Bombay Brasserie. Kona's a good-looking venue, offering a modern-European alternative to the sub-continental flavours at those well-known venues next door. Starters here include lobster bisque with Dorset crab, radish and crème fraîche, beetroot salad with quinoa, black olives and a lemon dressing, and goat's curd with charred vegetables, bosc pear and lavender. Mains feature seabass with chorizo orzo, calamari and white tomato, and Gloucester Old Spot pork belly with smoked paprika, spelt and a rosemary crumb.
Venue says: “Enjoy a winter gift from us to you this year, with a 10% discount on our Afternoon Teas. Mon-Fri until 28th Feb. Please mention Winter10.”