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Old 22nd October 2013, 16:17   #41
Sir Virgs and Zamora
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We do know that jones was not trusted to bowl the final morning at edgbasten. When the going got tough there it was harmy and fred bowling. He did very well in his final three innings for England but let's not forget edgbasten.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 16:41   #42
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We do know that jones was not trusted to bowl the final morning at edgbasten. When the going got tough there it was harmy and fred bowling. He did very well in his final three innings for England but let's not forget edgbasten.
Well you seem to have forgotten how to spell it. Bit odd to decide that Jones can't have been that good because he wasn't chosen to bowl on a particular occasion, when the bowlers who bowled instead of him almost lost us the match, isn't it?
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Old 22nd October 2013, 22:09   #43
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Well you seem to have forgotten how to spell it. Bit odd to decide that Jones can't have been that good because he wasn't chosen to bowl on a particular occasion, when the bowlers who bowled instead of him almost lost us the match, isn't it?
You mean. He was not asked to bowl and other bowlers won the match then? At least jones made it exciting by dropping one!
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Old 22nd October 2013, 23:05   #44
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You mean. He was not asked to bowl and other bowlers won the match then? At least jones made it exciting by dropping one!
It was one hell of an exciting session but your argument appears to be that Jones can't have been such a good bowler because he wasn't involved in bowling at Warne, Lee and Kasper when they almost put on enough runs between them to win from dead and buried. It's not a terribly compelling or logical argument, is it?
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Old 22nd October 2013, 23:16   #45
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It was one hell of an exciting session but your argument appears to be that Jones can't have been such a good bowler because he wasn't involved in bowling at Warne, Lee and Kasper when they almost put on enough runs between them to win from dead and buried. It's not a terribly compelling or logical argument, is it?
We were desperate for a wicket and the only bowler not to bowl was jones. Please tell me what is not compelling?
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Old 22nd October 2013, 23:21   #46
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Should point out that if it was not for jones's batting then probably lose but that is not the point.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 23:47   #47
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We were desperate for a wicket and the only bowler not to bowl was jones. Please tell me what is not compelling?
The bit where Jones not bowling correlated with us not getting a wicket. The bit where Hoggard didn't bowl either? The bit where you're relying on a captaincy decision on one morning of a test in not even a full session as your only argument against the best bowler on either side in a series? Do you need more? The bit where his match figures were better than Harmison's? The bit where he got their top scoring batsman out in both innings, in the test you're using as your argument against him?
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Old 23rd October 2013, 13:09   #48
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McGrath's injury was clearly a pivotal moment in the series, more so than Harmison's spell at Lords. What that first innings did suggest though was that England had a bowling attack that could live with and even dominate the Aussie batsmen who, in years gone by, had put our bowlers to the sword time and time again. Even in the 2nd innings we might well have restricted them to a smaller target had our fielding been smarter (although we'd still have lost the test).
Yes, McGrath's injury certainly made it easier for England to win the series but they still wouldn't have been able to so had their own mindset not been in the right place. There are plenty of examples of key players missing Test matches - even whole series - but their teams still prevailing, simply because they had the wood over their oppo as a unit.

I thought England as a unit were still in awe of Australia for much of that Lord's Test but there were a couple of (and I'm loathe to use this word but here goes) positives which they took from the contest. One was the working over of Australia's early order and the symbolic drawing of blood. The other - and I was there to see it - was Pietersen's onslaught in the first innings. There had been the occasional instance of English batsmen playing very well against McGrath and Warne over the previous ten years but few examples of top order batsmen savagely going after them. When KP launched McGrath into the pavilion, you could hear the jaws dropping around St John's Wood. And I'm sure it sent the message through the England batting line up that the vaunted Aussie attack could be taken on. And so it was - both McGrath and Warne continued to take wickets during that series and remain spitefully dangerous but their run per over rates far exceeded their career marks.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 15:20   #49
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Yes, McGrath's injury certainly made it easier for England to win the series but they still wouldn't have been able to so had their own mindset not been in the right place. There are plenty of examples of key players missing Test matches - even whole series - but their teams still prevailing, simply because they had the wood over their oppo as a unit.

I thought England as a unit were still in awe of Australia for much of that Lord's Test but there were a couple of (and I'm loathe to use this word but here goes) positives which they took from the contest. One was the working over of Australia's early order and the symbolic drawing of blood. The other - and I was there to see it - was Pietersen's onslaught in the first innings. There had been the occasional instance of English batsmen playing very well against McGrath and Warne over the previous ten years but few examples of top order batsmen savagely going after them. When KP launched McGrath into the pavilion, you could hear the jaws dropping around St John's Wood. And I'm sure it sent the message through the England batting line up that the vaunted Aussie attack could be taken on. And so it was - both McGrath and Warne continued to take wickets during that series and remain spitefully dangerous but their run per over rates far exceeded their career marks.
I remember watching KP's innings and thinking someone pretty special was occurring, even if he did only score a couple of small 50s in that test as wickets fell around him.

As for the Aussie bowling, their was some precedence for their weakness without McGrath and/or Warne, as these stats suggest http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/eng...;type=se ries
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Old 23rd October 2013, 15:34   #50
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As for the Aussie bowling, their was some precedence for their weakness without McGrath and/or Warne, as these stats suggest http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/eng...;type=se ries
Which kinda makes my point...even with those two luminaries absent, India still couldn't shake off their terrible hoodoo in Australia to win the series.
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Old 24th June 2017, 09:06   #51
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Compelling story in today's Guardian about Steve Harmison''s battle with depression. Sad that there was so little help at hand, and that was only 12-13 years ago.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/20...blic-interview
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Old 28th January 2019, 19:45   #52
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What England's latest struggles in the West Indies underlines is quite how special Steve Harmison was.

The last time England won a test series in the West Indies Harmison's match figures were

33.3-14-73-9
36.1-10-101-7
33.1-11-76-6
37.0-6-92-1 (the only bowler to go under 3 an over as Lara racked up 400*).

The WIndies had the likes of Brian Charles Lara, Shiv Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan so 4 players averaging 40+ so a far stronger batting line-up than the current one.

Oh for a bowler of Harmy's quality now.
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Old 28th January 2019, 21:21   #53
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What England's latest struggles in the West Indies underlines is quite how special Steve Harmison was.

The last time England won a test series in the West Indies Harmison's match figures were

33.3-14-73-9
36.1-10-101-7
33.1-11-76-6
37.0-6-92-1 (the only bowler to go under 3 an over as Lara racked up 400*).

The WIndies had the likes of Brian Charles Lara, Shiv Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan so 4 players averaging 40+ so a far stronger batting line-up than the current one.

Oh for a bowler of Harmy's quality now.
I think it was about the only tour he went on and didn't bowl like a drain.
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Old 30th January 2019, 09:40   #54
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I think it was about the only tour he went on and didn't bowl like a drain.
He has IMO been treated very poorly by history - remembered more for hitting slip with the first ball of an Ashes series than for being the best fast bowler we have produced since? Willis/Snow/Trueman?
At one stage I think he was the only England bowler ever to be rated No.1 in the world - I appreciate that these rather arbitrary measures have only come in recently and it is a little like all the football records that only began when the Premiership did, also I think Anderson might have also got there since. But it is a fact he was a serious handful and a very good bowler!
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Old 30th January 2019, 11:33   #55
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He has IMO been treated very poorly by history - remembered more for hitting slip with the first ball of an Ashes series than for being the best fast bowler we have produced since? Willis/Snow/Trueman?
At one stage I think he was the only England bowler ever to be rated No.1 in the world - I appreciate that these rather arbitrary measures have only come in recently and it is a little like all the football records that only began when the Premiership did, also I think Anderson might have also got there since. But it is a fact he was a serious handful and a very good bowler!


Since the Wisden Trophy was introduced around 1960, England have won two test series in West Indies. One was in 1967/68 courtesy of an infamous Sobers declaration in a match in which England took just 9 wickets and the other was a Steve Harmison dominated series.

That deserves respect.

In contrast England have won test series in Australia four times in that time period.

Eng away test series wins since 1960
WI 2 of 11 (18%)

Ind 4 of 17 (23%)
Aus 4 of 17 (24%)
Pak 2 of 8 (25%)

NZ 5 of 13 (38%)

SL 3 of 7 (43%)

SA 3 of 6 (50%)

Ban 2 of 3 (67%)

And in case you think this is because the great West Indies side of the 80s distorts the record, England have won test series more recently in Australia, India, South Africa, NZ, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh than in West Indies. The only country England have a longer drought in is Pakistan.
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Old 30th January 2019, 19:17   #56
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He has IMO been treated very poorly by history - remembered more for hitting slip with the first ball of an Ashes series than for being the best fast bowler we have produced since? Willis/Snow/Trueman?
At one stage I think he was the only England bowler ever to be rated No.1 in the world - I appreciate that these rather arbitrary measures have only come in recently and it is a little like all the football records that only began when the Premiership did, also I think Anderson might have also got there since. But it is a fact he was a serious handful and a very good bowler!
Indeed, I was probably being a bit flippant. He had terrible homesickness which prevented him fulfilling his potential in the likes of SA and Australia as he could have been a real handful there. Once he had built his confidence back up during the English summer he was excellent.

I actually think Chris Tremlett for a while was just as good and underrated.
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Old 30th January 2019, 19:39   #57
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Harmison was excellent for about a year, then after that very erratic with only occasional flashes of brilliance. He probably suffered from a version of the yips, sadly- while that ball to slip was an extreme example, there were a number of occasions when his opening spells were all over the shop. He also struggled bowling a fuller length which meant he was fodder on anything but fast, bouncy wickets.
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Old 30th January 2019, 21:01   #58
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Indeed, I was probably being a bit flippant. He had terrible homesickness which prevented him fulfilling his potential in the likes of SA and Australia as he could have been a real handful there. Once he had built his confidence back up during the English summer he was excellent.

I actually think Chris Tremlett for a while was just as good and underrated.
There was an 8 match spell when Harmison took as many wickets as Tremlett did in his entire test career.

It started just after Harmison had won the 5th test v SA at the Oval with a spell of 4-33 in the second innings and in the following 8 test matches he took 53 wickets at 16.69 with a strikerate of 40.3 and an economy rate of 2.48. Those stats include bowling on the flattest of surfaces at Antigua where Brian Lara broke the record for highest test score!

Including that SA match, England won 8 out of 9 matches with Harmison winning 3 consecutive man of the match awards.

It didn't last but that period was probably the greatest bowling I've seen by an English bowler. Had his career been cut short then he'd have been revered like Simon Jones later was. Instead he had his struggles but I'm full of admiration for the way he kept charging in on flat pitches in the heat when things weren't going his way as he had no rhythm and the ball wasn't coming out right. He played with the heart of a lion.

I'm not sure the same could be said for Tremlett who bowled well but as part of an attack who had already put the opposition on the back foot. Harmison at his peak was the closest I've seen to an English Curtly Ambrose bowling with hostility yet control (yes, I know it didn't last) and opponents unable to score off him.
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Old 10th February 2019, 19:12   #59
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Perhaps if we'd played the latest Durham speedster from the start in this series, things might have been a little different.
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Old 16th April 2019, 19:58   #60
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I'd suggest Harmy was at his peak a year before the 2005 Ashes. He was right up there with the Worlds best. The slow decline had set in by 2005 and in my opinion he was the least effective of our bowling attack. His appalling start to the 2006 embarrassment was a failure of management. For the first time in a while England had totally failed to prepare for a big series. Became a useful bowler to have around though and always had a fair go even in testing conditions. Won my respect when he admitted he'd had enough of it all and wanted to spend time with his young family. Nothing wrong with that.
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