So far, the Ashes is once again living up to the hype.
After Australia controlled the famous Test series battle in the 1990s and early 2000s, England bounced back, winning three of the last four, including the most recent in 2010-11.
As ESPN Stats & Info noted, that back-and-forth has been typical in this long-running cricket rivalry:
The historical importance coming into this year's match was apparent, and with tensions from each country running high, the early action from the first Test (England 215 all out, Australia 75-4) was thrilling and intense.
Of course, that's not to say it was always pretty.
With a pitch that seemed prime for the batters, no one was expecting an incredible 14 wickets on Wednesday. Nevertheless, it was that, in part, what made things so entertaining.
England won the toss and, of course, chose to bat first, looking to erase its recent struggles in first innings of Test series matchups over the last couple of years.
That didn't happen.
England was only able to muster 215 runs, sparking the frustration of the legendary Michael Vaughan:
Still, there were a few bright spots. Jonathan Trott continued his remarkable consistency, scoring 48 runs, which turned out to be the highest score of the day.
Fortunately for England, James Anderson and Steven Finn were on form.
After the duo helped restrict Australia to 45 for four wickets, Finn had this to say, courtesy of BBC:
I think we fought back really well in that last session, Jimmy bowled beautifully and I managed to pick up a couple of wickets. The batters said it is a good wicket but there is value in holding a length and trying to hit the top of off stump.
Jimmy is a special bowler and has been for a long time, it's testament to producing and developing new skills and the ball that got Michael Clarke was an absolute beauty.
In the end, Steve Smith, who is still not out, led Australia with 38 runs. And as the team's official Twitter account pointed out, he and Phil Hughes worked well together to help overturn an absolutely nightmarish start from the Aussies, which saw Ed Cowan and Michael Clarke score ducks.
There you have it.
If you aren't ecstatic for Thursday's action, there's a good chance you don't have a pulse. Many were expecting the usual exciting start to the Ashes, but what came to fruition was a blazing inferno of back-and-forth action.
Buckle up, folks. We are in store for another classic between these two countries.
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