Saturday, 28 June 2008

Same as it ever was

Paul Collingwood’s ban from International Cricket means that England’s selectors had to do something they are unfamiliar with: select. Faced with this clearly difficult situation they refused to panic by picking someone who deserved the place and opted for Alastair Cook. Phew, what a close shave that was. Collingwood is a finisher, someone who can bat the middle to late overs and push the score along. He is also a more than useful one day bowler – in fact he is the top England wicket taker in this one day series. To replace him with Cook is a bizarre decision. Cook can neither ‘finish’ nor bowl. A cynic might say it was a selection made deliberately to ensure no one else gets a chance and upsets the Antigua gravy train...

England has been beaten by New Zealand in another one day series. The reasons are fairly easy to determine: New Zealand is a better one day side. England cannot compete with the New Zealand power house of McCullum, Styris and Oram. England’s version would be Pietersen, Wright and Shah. Pietersen is a class player but he is expected to fill every role. Shah is a useful cricketer and I think England should persevere with him. Luke Wright in my eyes at least looks hopelessly out of his depth and simply doesn’t look good enough to play at the International level. He has the odd decent score, usually the result of fortunate slogging. Tim Ambrose, the England wicket keeper also looks out of his depth, his five ODI innings have netted him ten runs and he dropped a relative sitter today with the gloves on. When you consider his opposite number is McCullum (or Boucher in a few weeks) then the talent gap is clear. Phil Mustard must wonder how he got dropped.


scorpicity said...

The mystery continues... a team that has been pretty consistently doing ok in tests, are absolutely disastrous in the shorter format.

Ottayan said...

Napier - is he a good bet?

Brian Carpenter said...

I agree with most of that, Rob. I don't think Cook's ever going to cut it as a one-day player as his strike rate simply isn't high enough and I can't see that changing.

I think Wright's worth persisting with, but he's still got a long way to go. He'd benefit from a regular place in the order, but not as an opener.

As usual the ODI side looks a bit of a mess just now doesn't it?

UTP said...

No matter what people say, this English side is not going to even come close to winning the ashes. They need killer bowlers.

Collingwood is the best mind in the side to be captain. Alistair Cook was the obvious choice. No harm in having a solid batsman in the side.