Monday, 18 May 2009


Another Test, another disappointing display from the West Indies. It is not a surprise though; the conditions in mid-May are about as far from West Indian conditions as you can get on a cricket pitch. The ODIs could well be much closer however – in many respects the West Indies are a better ODI side than England. The ODI series is followed by the ICC World Twenty20, so WHY, would England play three 50-over matches and NO Twentry20 games? Why would either side want that?

The eleven who played for England in both Test matches have had a nice tune up and confidence boost. They have made plenty of runs and taken easy wickets – they still had to do it though. The England side can only beat who the ECB put in front of them but I am not sure we have learned an awful lot. Bresnan for Flintoff would be an easy swap for the first Ashes Test and given the performances it is difficult to see how a Sidebottom/Bell/Vaughan selection could be justified... but I am sure they will find a way.

The first Ashes Test is on July 8th and I am worried it could be a huge let-down. My worry is the pitch. Laughably the first Test of the Ashes is on a ground that has never hosted a Test match before. The pitch was today rated as ‘poor’ and Glamorgan fined. This relates to the Glamorgan v Essex match last Tuesday. The wicket seemed to lack any pace and gave excessive spin from the first ball! Danesh Kaneria was just about unplayable. If the Ashes wicket isn’t a high quality Test wicket there will be trouble...


Mahesh said...

I am not sure about the England team to be honest. OK, they looked good against West Indies. I don't think that level of play will be enough against the Aussies.

I am not even going to start on team selection lest I give Rob a coronary :) Who's your first XI Rob? Assuming Freddie is fit.

The pitch / weather situation might make the Ashes interesting.

Rob said...

Given the way the players have played I think the only change I would make is Freddie for Bresnan. I am not convinced by Cook or Collingwood but their recent form makes it difficult to drop them.

I really would like to get rid of Prior. He is a good with the bat but useless with the gloves and for me its the gloves that should win. Drop Ponting on a duck and watch him make 200 then the value of a decent wicket keeper is shown. I was impressed with Foster last week (Essex).

Mahesh said...

I heard about Foster [haven't seen him yet though, thanks to fucking Sky]. Re Prior, dropping Pointing on ANY score is not a good idea :)

Cook and Collie got lucky against WI :) Do you think it's a good idea to open with two left handers? I always prefer a left and right. Hopefully Bopara will play number 3 and Bell is dropped. Vaughn should not even be considered.

And Anderson bowled pretty well, but I am still sceptical especially after the press and the whole lot made him into something of a celebrity. Commentator's and media's curse?