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Old 3rd August 2017, 09:32   #1
blackeyedangles
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England vs South Africa, 4th Test, 4th-8th August, Old Trafford

Didn't see a thread so I thought I'd make one; this starts tomorrow!

Will we see a repeat of the win-lose-win-lose-win-lose
and the "last-test-of-a-series-total-brainfade" aspects of England?

Or are we going to see some consistency?

Can Toby Roland-Jones follow up his excellent debut?
Can Westley improve upon his pretty-good debut?
Can Malan get over his horror debut?

Squads

Joe Root (Yorkshire, captain)
Moeen Ali (Worcestershire)
James Anderson (Lancashire)
Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire)
Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire)
Alastair Cook (Essex)
Liam Dawson (Hampshire)
Steven Finn (Middlesex)
Keaton Jennings (Durham)
Dawid Malan (Middlesex)
Toby Roland-Jones (Middlesex)
Ben Stokes (Durham)
Tom Westley (Essex)

(Finn in for Wood)

Couldn't find SA's squad but I imagine they will make changes... although actually I can't see a change they could make that would really improve the side unless they have another batter for Kuhn
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Old 3rd August 2017, 09:40   #2
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If England pick Dawson again over Malan I'm going to go up to Manchester and kick everyone responsible in the balls.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 11:02   #3
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Originally Posted by James Zebrorter View Post
If England pick Dawson again over Malan I'm going to go up to Manchester and kick everyone responsible in the balls.
The weather hasn't been great up here for the past couple of weeks and there's no warm weather forecast for the test so I imagine any temptation to recall The Man, The Myth The Legend Liam Dawson will be shelved. Big Vern has been declared fit for SA so I expect both teams will be unchanged.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 11:11   #4
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Originally Posted by Psyduck View Post
The weather hasn't been great up here for the past couple of weeks and there's no warm weather forecast for the test so I imagine any temptation to recall The Man, The Myth The Legend Liam Dawson will be shelved. Big Vern has been declared fit for SA so I expect both teams will be unchanged.
There's a lot of talk about Kuhn being dropped. Bavuma to open and Markram to bat at 6.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 11:34   #5
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Originally Posted by James Zebrorter View Post
If England pick Dawson again over Malan I'm going to go up to Manchester and kick everyone responsible in the balls.
Why? He's better than Malan.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 11:55   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redmachine View Post
There's a lot of talk about Kuhn being dropped. Bavuma to open and Markram to bat at 6.
I can see Bavuma opening given that he's displayed a fair bit of grit and determination in his innings so far, but has he ever done it for his franchise?
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Old 3rd August 2017, 12:10   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James Zebrorter View Post
If England pick Dawson again over Malan I'm going to go up to Manchester and kick everyone responsible in the balls.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ali TT View Post
Why? He's better than Malan.
Statistically there's not as much to choose between them as I expected, either as batsman or bowler:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/236489.html

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/211855.html

I just think if the conditions really favour having a proper spin partner for Moeen there just has to be someone better than Dawson (Leach? Crane?) and whether or not he's good enough to bat at 8 shouldn't enter the equasion - put Roland-Jones at 8 and Broad at 9 if it means we strengthen the attack. Otherwise Malan should get another chance at 5.

Unfortunately England appear to have entered a phase of the cycle in which there just aren't any outstanding candidates for one or two positions, therefore we aren't going to win enough games consistently enough to challenge for the top spot in the Test rankings. We still haven't fully recovered from the break up of the triumphant 2010/11 Ashes team, which happened within a very short space of time following the last Ashes tour.

The balance of the XI then and now intrigues me. Then we had six batsmen, a battle-hardened keeper who averaged 40 batting at 7, and four bowlers with just Collingwood's medium pace as back-up. Over the past year or two we've had all manner of people who seem to be in the side primarily for their versatility. I wonder whether the current selectors would consider picking the XI we had for the 2005 Ashes, which effectively had a dogged number 9 batsman (Giles) and three number 11s in Hoggard, Harmison & S.Jones?
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Old 3rd August 2017, 12:27   #8
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Please please please, they need to go with this batting line up:

Cook
Jennings (since they havent got anyone else)
Root
Bairstow
Ali
Stokes
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Old 3rd August 2017, 12:46   #9
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Originally Posted by billyguntheballs View Post
Please please please, they need to go with this batting line up:

Cook
Jennings (since they havent got anyone else)
Root
Bairstow
Ali
Stokes
Why wouldn't you play Westley after he impressed on debut?
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Old 3rd August 2017, 12:48   #10
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No need for changes to the England side - from he squad available anyway. Same batting order too.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 13:13   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prince of Denmark View Post
Statistically there's not as much to choose between them as I expected, either as batsman or bowler:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/236489.html

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/211855.html

I just think if the conditions really favour having a proper spin partner for Moeen there just has to be someone better than Dawson (Leach? Crane?) and whether or not he's good enough to bat at 8 shouldn't enter the equasion - put Roland-Jones at 8 and Broad at 9 if it means we strengthen the attack. Otherwise Malan should get another chance at 5.

Unfortunately England appear to have entered a phase of the cycle in which there just aren't any outstanding candidates for one or two positions, therefore we aren't going to win enough games consistently enough to challenge for the top spot in the Test rankings. We still haven't fully recovered from the break up of the triumphant 2010/11 Ashes team, which happened within a very short space of time following the last Ashes tour.

The balance of the XI then and now intrigues me. Then we had six batsmen, a battle-hardened keeper who averaged 40 batting at 7, and four bowlers with just Collingwood's medium pace as back-up. Over the past year or two we've had all manner of people who seem to be in the side primarily for their versatility. I wonder whether the current selectors would consider picking the XI we had for the 2005 Ashes, which effectively had a dogged number 9 batsman (Giles) and three number 11s in Hoggard, Harmison & S.Jones?
Nowadays the style is to put your number 11s up the order
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Old 3rd August 2017, 13:23   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billyguntheballs View Post
Please please please, they need to go with this batting line up:

Cook
Jennings (since they havent got anyone else)
Root
Bairstow
Ali
Stokes
Would you then be picking 5 bowlers along with Ali and Stokes? 7 bowlers is crazy.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 16:34   #13
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Why wouldn't you play Westley after he impressed on debut?
Why would you not have England's best number 3 batting at number 3? Why would you have England's best test bat of 2016 at 8?
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Old 3rd August 2017, 16:39   #14
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Would you then be picking 5 bowlers along with Ali and Stokes? 7 bowlers is crazy.
I'd have Malan at 7 and then 4 bowlers (Jimmy, Broad, Jones and Finn). I would have preferred Plunkett tbh.

That gives England 6 bowlers, possibly 7 if Malan bowls a bit.

So the batting is tighter, with some more bowling options IF needed. It's hardly a world away from the set up now but it does not require debutants and mediocre bats having a go at 3 or Ali being wasted as ap inch hitter at 8.

Obviously I know this type of team would never play, as the England set up lack any level of creativity or common sense.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 17:04   #15
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Originally Posted by billyguntheballs View Post
I'd have Malan at 7 and then 4 bowlers (Jimmy, Broad, Jones and Finn). I would have preferred Plunkett tbh.

That gives England 6 bowlers, possibly 7 if Malan bowls a bit.

So the batting is tighter, with some more bowling options IF needed. It's hardly a world away from the set up now but it does not require debutants and mediocre bats having a go at 3 or Ali being wasted as ap inch hitter at 8.

Obviously I know this type of team would never play, as the England set up lack any level of creativity or common sense.
If you listen to all ex-England captains in the comm box, they all say that they found it difficult to get a 5th bowler on, so getting a 6th and 7th bowler into the game is just ridiculous. It's not creativity or common sense. Just completely daft.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 17:15   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prince of Denmark View Post
Statistically there's not as much to choose between them as I expected, either as batsman or bowler:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/236489.html

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/211855.html

I just think if the conditions really favour having a proper spin partner for Moeen there just has to be someone better than Dawson (Leach? Crane?) and whether or not he's good enough to bat at 8 shouldn't enter the equasion - put Roland-Jones at 8 and Broad at 9 if it means we strengthen the attack. Otherwise Malan should get another chance at 5.

Unfortunately England appear to have entered a phase of the cycle in which there just aren't any outstanding candidates for one or two positions, therefore we aren't going to win enough games consistently enough to challenge for the top spot in the Test rankings. We still haven't fully recovered from the break up of the triumphant 2010/11 Ashes team, which happened within a very short space of time following the last Ashes tour.

The balance of the XI then and now intrigues me. Then we had six batsmen, a battle-hardened keeper who averaged 40 batting at 7, and four bowlers with just Collingwood's medium pace as back-up. Over the past year or two we've had all manner of people who seem to be in the side primarily for their versatility. I wonder whether the current selectors would consider picking the XI we had for the 2005 Ashes, which effectively had a dogged number 9 batsman (Giles) and three number 11s in Hoggard, Harmison & S.Jones?
Kind of agree with the post above (as in not the one I've quoted) by Redmachine, although as part of a slightly different conversation. It's really hard to see how England get a lot of extra utility out of having a sixth bowling option. Sure, if we had an obviously excellent spinner, he'd play and if it gave us Ali as a sixth bowling option, that would be fine as he'd play anyway as a batsman. Having said that, I'd be tempted not to pick three specialist pace bowlers and Stokes in that case. In the real, rather than theoretical world where we have at best very marginal alternative spinners who aren't necessarily any better than Ali and may be a fair bit worse, there's just no point at all picking a side with two spinners and four pace bowlers. If we have to pick a specialist batsman to bat at 8 or bat Ali at 8, fine, for me. Having a really good batsman at 8 is for me far more beneficial than a sixth bowling option we'd arguably be better off not using at all.

Your questions are interesting but as with all selection questions, they don't mean that much in the abstract. The sides we had with four bowlers including Swann were sides with four bowlers including Swann. If we had a Swann now we'd maybe play him as one of four bowlers, still pick Ali but hardly bowl him or perhaps we'd have so many all rounders we'd still have five bowlers and Ali but then you'd hardly call Ali a bowler at all, as he'd be used very infrequently indeed.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 19:12   #17
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If England pick Dawson again over Malan I'm going to go up to Manchester and kick everyone responsible in the balls.
Sorry but I have dibs on that one. I was thinking more in tems of rusty garden implements though
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Old 3rd August 2017, 19:34   #18
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Why would you not have England's best number 3 batting at number 3? Why would you have England's best test bat of 2016 at 8?
Nobody is suggesting Root at 8.

Why not have England's best number 4 batting at number 4? Why not have England's best 5/6/7/opener at 5/6/7/opener? Root should, to my mind, bat where's he's best. If he's not comfortable at 3, and his record there is worse than everywhere else except opening, I believe, then I wouldn't want to have our captain and best player having that frustration on his plate as well. Westley has started well and looks far more like a test player than Malan, and his game looks to be more suited to #3 than Root's.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 19:36   #19
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Statistically there's not as much to choose between them as I expected, either as batsman or bowler:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/236489.html

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/...er/211855.html

I just think if the conditions really favour having a proper spin partner for Moeen there just has to be someone better than Dawson (Leach? Crane?) and whether or not he's good enough to bat at 8 shouldn't enter the equasion - put Roland-Jones at 8 and Broad at 9 if it means we strengthen the attack. Otherwise Malan should get another chance at 5.

Unfortunately England appear to have entered a phase of the cycle in which there just aren't any outstanding candidates for one or two positions, therefore we aren't going to win enough games consistently enough to challenge for the top spot in the Test rankings. We still haven't fully recovered from the break up of the triumphant 2010/11 Ashes team, which happened within a very short space of time following the last Ashes tour.

The balance of the XI then and now intrigues me. Then we had six batsmen, a battle-hardened keeper who averaged 40 batting at 7, and four bowlers with just Collingwood's medium pace as back-up. Over the past year or two we've had all manner of people who seem to be in the side primarily for their versatility. I wonder whether the current selectors would consider picking the XI we had for the 2005 Ashes, which effectively had a dogged number 9 batsman (Giles) and three number 11s in Hoggard, Harmison & S.Jones?
Flintoff batted 6 so it was 5 batsmen and an all rounder. Of the current batsmen you could only make a case for Root and Cook being in the same league as that side. Jones was a decent bat. Very sad his career was cut short as he could have been a real star. Haggard and Harmisson were quality bowlers in their pomp, Hoggard very similar to Anderson so probably an either or pick. Harmisson (or Jones) would be selected, because they both were genuinely quick. They persist with Wood because they are desperate to find an out and out quick.
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Old 3rd August 2017, 19:43   #20
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C'mon guys. The team will be the same as at the Oval. (We would have heard by now if England had called up another batsman surely). Jennings has to get a score to stay for the Windies. Malan will be given a few chances. England will be reluctant to drop TRJ but with Woakes waiting in the wings, he has to produce. Every other spot is writ in stone.
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