17 February 2008

More on Ian Bell!

England's batting has been decidedly fragile in the first 3 ODI's in New Zealand and my thoughts on that the other day were to move Mustard down the order. This piece by Mike Selvey in the Guardian got me thinking about Bell though....I've never been a huge fan of Bell as my previous posts show (Bell sums himself up in one innings), possibly because England chose to leave out their best batsman over the previous 12 months going into the 2005 Ashes for him. There is just no comparison between Graham Thorpe and Ian Bell as far as I'm concerned, but it's not Bell's fault he got picked for that series and worked over by the Aussies.

A certain other Cricket Burbler, Dave McCabe, has previously laid out the positive arguments for Bell: Ian Bell, but I've still not been converted, despite Bell's decent ODI record which has also been burbled about before (Positives for Ian Bell). Selvey's article sums up many of my reservations about Bell, and it was interesting to hear the radio commentary team describing watching Bell in ODIs as being like watching Nasser Hussain - the pressure builds and builds until he has to play a get out of jail shot which he either gets away with, or is his downfall. What the article doesn't mention - but perhaps is implicit in the opinion that Bell can't pace his innings correctly - is his shot selection. I continue to fear that Bell will give his wicket away at any stage in his innings (admittedly he was done for by another wrong decision in the last ODI). He is also renouned as the person that always plays great shots for 0 as his placement lets him down.

You can read the full article here. Michael Vaughan or Owais Shah for number 3 in the ODI set up anyone?

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