28 December 2010

What About Nielsen's Position?

Well, after three disastrous days of the fourth test we can safely assume that for the first time in 14 years an ashes series in Australia will end with the urn in England's possession. Australia have been thoroughly outplayed for the majority of the series. Understandably, most people in and around the Australian team are under fire from the media and the cricket loving Australian people. Captain, vice-captain, senior players, rookie players, and selectors are all being questioned and criticised. Australians aren't used to losing at home, and particularly not to the old enemy so they want heads to roll. This is to be expected.

One person who strangely seems to be flying under the radar , however, is coach Tim Nielsen. Granted, Nielsen is not pushing at balls outside his off stump with hard hands, or bowling short of a length when clearly a full length is required, or getting into heated discussions with umpires. But just what is he doing? The simple fact that his players are making these kinds of errors reflects poorly on his performance. To be honest I can't remember exactly when he took over from Buchanan (perhaps I should check my facts before blogging), but it seems to be roughly around the time the Aussies started their slide.

Whenever he fronts the media, I never hear any pearls of wisdom, or anything particularly insightful. Most of what he has to say is particularly inane "we need to put the ball in the right areas consistently" sort of stuff. Maybe he is more expansive in the privacy of the dressing room and saves the cliches for the media. Its difficult to know what goes on behind the scenes, and how much of a role a cricket coach plays. I just hope that his performance is being reviewed and monitored by the powers that be.

1 comment:

Ed said...

I think it was 2007 that Neilsen took over and he's not a big PR man so you don't hear much of him. Nothing wrong in that, but the job of the coach is to get more out of the players than their natural talent suggests they are capable of - I'm not sure he's done that.

There are certain players who have massively underperformed for Auastralia like Ponting, Clarke and Johnson (except for one innings in Perth) and they are of course culpable, but the other thing to recognise is that England came into the series far more organised and stable. The selectors and Neilsen must take some responsibility for that, whether they keep their jobs or not....