Cricket, lovely cricket


#81

Five for fifty-seven on debut. Great start Roland.


#82

Are we batting again


#83

Yep, they avoided the follow on (not that Root would have enforced it)


#84

Scroll to the bottom of the page and listen to the Boycott wind-up :grin:


#85

This England team are driving me a bit mad. 2/3/5 failed again yesterday. It could be that if we find a good 2 that there would be less pressure on the following players but at the moment we seem miles away. It is so frustrating because with other obvious names on the team sheet there is huge potential. South Africa are flawed too and so are West Indies who are next up, although SA’s mostly excellent bowling attack have been a trial. If Rabada and Philander had played more, things would have been more difficult still… Neither side are good prep for Straya at home!

Some good things have come out of the last couple of matches tho’. TRJ is a good find, a nagging work horse of a seamer like Matthew Hoggard or something. Also, Moeen is showing encouraging signs of developing into the kind of bowler the seamers can rotate around, he was excellent in SA’s first innings in this game. He is a great batsman for lower order spanking and he would be a truly massive player if he could keep going the way he is with the ball. I hope Mason Crane gets a go v the West Indies…


#86

It’s been an interesting series. Cook and Root are head and shoulders above the rest of the batting line up. While I agree that this puts pressure on them, it also puts pressure on the others to perform - pressure that they are clearly not bearing well.

It’s lower down that we have done well - Moeen is looking like a great all rounder and the bowling has generally performed well, with new and old working well.

It’s just a real concern that at least a couple of the batsmen look like they need to be dropped. Are there any others coming through?


#87

Dunno, I don’t follow county cricket like I used to…

I hope they can find a 2 and a 5. England are close to an amazing team. Bairstow, Stokes, Ali with Woakes returning, is mouthwatering for The Ashes. Broad and Anderson are still potent and there are options in the seam dept. Root is the right man to skipper and Cook is still superb. 8 or 9 members of this team are firing. Not sure there has ever been quite this potential in any England team since I have been into cricket (forever). Without that 2 and 5 however…

Those wonderful West Indies and Australian teams of yore were complete. England in my lifetime have had one or two really good teams that have been short lived. This one has the potential to be really great. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if we could have a sustained period of dominance? Won’t happen unless we find those last couple of players… Argggh!


#88

Hales and Morgan are the outstanding candidates.

If Hales was given licence to play natural game he could be the answer


#89

Hales I can understand, but Morgan is lacking at Test match level IMO

Can you imagine how good this team could be though if Kevin Pieterson could get a game at 5?


#90

Both are fallible imv. Hales has time to adjust his technique for test cricket but not sure he has done it yet… I like Morgan, who could be good at five. Lots of determination but has been found wanting before.


#91

Hales and Hameed in the runs this week. How about Hameed at 2 and Hales at 5 for the first test v West Indies?


#92

Great article here


#93

Tremendous article. Hard to imagine what it must have been like to face such bowling.


#94

I remember best the amazing Malcolm Marshall. He may not have been quite as quick as the others, but he could make it turn more than most spinners.

The article refers to the 80s and players not playing - was this due to the rebel SA tour, or something else?


#95

Adam Lyth just hit 161 off 73 balls.
20 fours
7 sixes

260 from twenty overs. Third highest individual T20 score ever, anywhere, and 4 off the largest score on record as a total.

I’m tempted to switch off now.


#96

Double hundred for Cook today, 4th of his career.


#97

:+1: Junky runs against this bunch of pie chuckers.

Such a shame the state of West Indies cricket, glad to have been around while they were awesome.


#98

:+1:


#99

Hmm, only three batsmen scored over 20!


#100

That’s a bit misleading though. Stoneman and Westley failed, but the others got out trying to score very quickly.

This England team could be truly great if we can solve 2 and 3. I suspect Woakes will walk back into the team at some point when he’s fully match fit, which will be hard on Roland-Jones, but that’s life and 7 of the other 8 virtually pick themselves. Not many first 11 places free for the Aussie tour, but we must sort 2 and 3 or there will be too much pressure on Root and the middle order.