22 November 2012

Broad's under the weather - so leave him out


Apparently Stuart Broad is not feeling great the day before the Test so why not leave him out?   I'd be leaving him out anyway, to be honest.
So team is: Cook, Compton, Trott, Pietersen, Bairstow, Patel, Prior, Bresnan, Swann, Anderson, Panesar.
Simple.   I've found one other cricket fan who agrees with the selection of Bresnan and Patel - I'm not sure there's many out there that do!
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482 in a day


I know scoring rates have increased substantially in recent times, but Australia's 482-5 today is pretty incredible.   I caught about 30 minutes of the Clarke/Hussey partnership this morning and they were scoring at around 8 an over then.

Clarke has become some kind of batting God since he got the captaincy - let's hope he hits a slump for the Ashes again.

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BCCI double IPL lead sponsorship revenue


Not a bad little earner for the BCCI, who now have Pepsi lined up to take over from DLF as their IPL lead sponsor for double the money!   Perhaps they could fund the rollout of video technology across the cricketing world?!
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18 November 2012

England can play Patel AND Panesar

What's your views on the balance of the England side?   It's interesting to see that today, the majority of wickets fell to medium pacers, although of course that's not accounting for the "real" wickets as some that were out were given not out, and some that were not out were given out.
In retrospect I'd have picked Panesar, but I can see why England picked Bresnan given that the ball has been reverse swinging a lot in the warm up games.   The other factors to take into account is that just because England's top order look pretty inept against spin, doesn't mean that England's spinners will automatically take lots of wickets - the Indian batsmen are sadly far better at playing spin so Panesar won't necessarily run throgh them. And of course, Bresnan can bat and his batting could yet prove crucial if England are to pull off a miraculous escape on day 5.
Having picked the side they picked, what really disappointed me was the lack of bowling Cook gave Patel on day 1.   (Yes, I know it's not the done thing to criticise Cook, sorry!).   Patel and Swann have sometimes bowled together brilliantly for Nottinghamshire, and it would have been great to see them in tandem far more - Patel will bowl bad balls but he's proven he can also bowl some great ones.   He may be inferior to Panesar but he's still well worth a long bowl in those conditions.
Patel's in danger of losing his chance for England and I feel very sorry for him.   He's the right man for number 6 in India in my opinion (as he's a far better player of spin than Bairstow and Morgan) irrespective of his bowling.   But he's been unlucky on several counts - he's had some shocking LBW decisions (including one in the first innings in his favour when he should have been given), he's starting to get negative press purely because he's seen by some as keeping Panesar out of the side (compare his press with, for example Bairstow when he came into the side and the commentators raved about his classy 16 on debut), and of course Patel hasn't played a home Test yet. Readers of Cricket Burble may remember that it's been statistically proven you're less likely to succeed as a player if you make your debut away.
Assuming the wicket is much the same as this one for the next Test, I'd want Panesar in the side, but I wouldn't be dropping Patel.   My preference would be to drop Broad for Panesar (which means that Broad will now take 5 for because every time he's gone a few games without doing anything that seems to happen!), and England would then need to select between Anderson and Finn.   The alternative would be to bat Prior and Patel and 5 and 6 (who goes in first doesn't really matter to me but I'm not sure I agree with those wanting Prior up the order - given England's top order batting if he bats 5 he'll be in within a few overs which won't be helpful if he's been keeping for 5 sessions).   I'd like to keep Bresnan in the side in that scenario because he's an excellent reverse swing bowler, and of course he's the only bowler who tries to bat properly.
It will be interesting to see what happens if England can get through the first session tomorrow without a wicket falling - a huge ask, but if they could it may be an exciting Test match.   With Sehwag opening and the likes of Kohli, Yuvraj and Dhoni in the Indian side they can easily chase down 200 in a session, so it's crucial England are still batting at tea if they want to pull off a miracle draw.
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16 November 2012

No Sympathy

In contrast to  my attitude to J P Duminy there is no sympathy for Frankie Dettori , facing a lengthy ban. Solely schadenfreude - he's the strange man who said that he hated cricket. Serves him right !
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9 November 2012


Getting injured in a warm-down session ( whatever that might be) sounds very silly and I'm fairly confident that it's a risk I'm never likely to face. Nevertheless J P Duminy deserves sympathy ( possibly out for six months !) and will probably have his own plans for after match entertainment in future, especially on days when he's not even stepped foot on the field.
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5 November 2012

England's batting line up

Amazingly, having gone out with a more inexperienced batting squad than usual, England seem to have a number of options with only one more warm up game to go before the 1st Test v India.   Gut feel given the squad that England took with only Joe Root as a specialist opener other than Cook, I though they'd look to move Trott up to open with Bell at 3, leaving 5 and 6 open.   But Cook has emphatically stated that Trott will bat 3, so he must be relieved that Compton made some runs opening today.

Patel and Bairstow have both made great starts to the tour with hundreds, so I'm surprised England closed off the option to have them 5 and 6, but choosing one it presumably has to be Patel given his left-arm spin (3 wickets today won't have harmed his cause).   Good luck to Patel - he's still young enough to have a very long and successful England career ahead of him if he can come good, and he'll be keen to do well enough that he can get a home test eventually!

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