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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Thu 13 Sep 2018, 8:55 am

First topic message reminder :

After the perfect ending to the summer, with Alastair Cook riding into the sunset with a hundred and James Anderson breaking Glenn McGrath's record to wrap up a 4-1 series win over the #1 side in the world...England head into a brave new world (in a mere 3 weeks time!) post Cook

Tour of Sri Lanka (Oct-Nov)
5 ODI's played between 10th October and 23rd October
1 T20i played on 27th October
3 Test matches played between 6th November and 23rd November

Tour of West Indies (Jan-Mar)
3 Test matches played between 23rd January and 9th February
5 ODI's played between 20th February and 2nd March
3 T20i's played between 5th March and 10th March

As ever there are many rumblings in the media on potential selections ahead of the Sri Lanka tour...

Rory Burns seems set to take Cook's spot
Will Jennings keep his place? Or will a Vince/Denly or complete wildcard be picked to open with him?
Which spinners do England take along with Moeen/Rashid?
Do Anderson/Broad get rested?
What pace options will be taken?

All questions that will be debated and answered in the coming weeks...so I start with a little competition between us selectors on v2...

Name your test squad for the series in Sri Lanka. Whoever gets the nearest to the actual squad, gets a pair of Ed Smith approved sunglasses Cool
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:14 am

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:Jennings is indeed a very intriguing case - a South African born, raised in England on English pitches, opening batsman, who seemingly cannot play seam - but is very good against spin! Maybe he'll be an away tour specialist...?

Now Alfie gets Foakes out Wink

Sorry , Olly .

Jennings might indeed be an Asia specialist. We will probably see in West Indies whether he is going to book a spot for the home summer...but I really wouldn't be surprised if they got some one else in by the time the Ashes series came around. Starc and co will hope not !
Depend a bit on how Burns settles in - too early to tell.

Important next hour if England are to get this up to a par score.

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:30 am

Curran survives a close stumping -twice.

But Buttler tries one too many reverse sweeps...trouble now at
171/7.

No doubt there will be suggestions they should have picked the extra batsman ! But hopefully Rashid and co can support Curran to at least push this over 220 ...

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:46 am

Very patient from Curran so far...5 from 32.  Rashid is positively racing by contrast 7 from 18 Smile

Not going to be 300 this time .  Though this pitch is going to get a lot trickier than Galle so even 220 might be ok batting first...

Six from Rashid !  More like that , please ! That was an excellent strike...good footwork , lovely swing of the bat...sailed back over the bowler's head.


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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:47 am

England 192 for 7. On paper looks poor but on a pitch that will offer a lot to England's spinners then I cannot see either team being out of this after the First Innings.
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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:50 am

alfie wrote:
Not going to be 300 this time .  

we always say this.

then they get 350

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:54 am

Another handy contribution with the bat here from Rashid - England approaching 200 now...
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:01 am

Over 200 now...

Very useful stand , this. And perhaps surprisingly it is Rashid who is dominating the scoring as he moves to 27...Lakmal back with some seam bowling - of course he is all they have in that department ; and a couple of the spinners have been rather expensive. Game is moving on. (no draws in Sri Lanka !)

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:05 am

Gooseberry wrote:
alfie wrote:
Not going to be 300 this time .  

we always say this.

then they get 350

You off down the betting shop to back a 350 score , goose ? They've recovered remarkably a few times recently but surely it can't happen every time ...

I'd be happy with 270 from here.

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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:38 am

alfie wrote:Curran survives a close stumping -twice.

But Buttler tries one too many reverse sweeps...trouble now at
171/7.

No doubt there will be suggestions they should have picked the extra batsman ! But hopefully Rashid and co can support Curran to at least push this over 220 ...

Thought the ''second stumping'' was naive and poor play from both batsman and keeper. Neither player was switched on quickly enough to the possibility.

Useful runs for the second Test running from Rashid but he's just gone now.


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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:42 am

Bewilderment at the ground, the Sky studio and Bat Towers concerning Foakes' dismissal - ''well, he didn't hit that'' said the usually observant Mrs Bat (she never misses when I put a foot wrong anyway!) immediately upon walking into the room as it happened.

Buttler looked surprised. I felt he should at least have spoken to Foakes.

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:47 am

guildfordbat wrote:Bewilderment at the ground, the Sky studio and Bat Towers concerning Foakes' dismissal - ''well, he didn't hit that'' said the usually observant Mrs Bat (she never misses when I put a foot wrong anyway!) immediately upon walking into the room as it happened.

Buttler looked surprised. I felt he should at least have spoken to Foakes.

Not the first England bat to have a brain fade in such a situation recently . Was it Vince in Melbourne given lbw when he'd given it a huge edge ? And I think there was one other...must be the heat gets 'em Smile

Sam still playing carefully...but the score is up over 220 . Could have been worse...

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:55 am

England on the brink on 225 for 9. Like I said earlier there is more than enough in this pitch to help the England spinners. I see the first innings scores being very close to parity.
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 9:56 am

Leach gone...Sam better get busy unless the Burnley Lara is in form...well at least he's survived a poor lbw call !   225/9

Just 65 overs gone today.  Don't think you'd want tickets for Sunday...

Or even Saturday.

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:02 am

When he does go for it , young Sam , he really gives it a whack ! Two powerful sixes clap

And he gets the strike back...

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:09 am

Well the innings looked over on 241 but now the 250 is up. England 252 for 9. Anderson sweeping for 4.
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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:11 am

alfie wrote:When he does go for it , young Sam , he really gives it a whack ! Two powerful sixes clap

And he gets the strike back...

For sure although Sri Lanka have allowed him too much of the strike.

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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:16 am

Goose still has hopes that his 350 bet will turn out to be a winning one! Wink

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:17 am

Sri Lanka really have been a bit sleepy in this partnership...

Just as well Jimmy had that review up his sleeve ! This stand now worth 39 useful runs. Can Sam get another fifty ?

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:19 am

Yes of course ...gets it with another six !

Getting to be a habit Smile

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:19 am

Great 50 for Curran and this 45 run stand for the 10th wicket is England's highest in Sri Lanka.
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:26 am

Remarkable Test batting record do far , Curran. Can't think of anyone - England or other - who has made as many serious batting contributions , batting at eight or nine, in his first half dozen matches...or hit as many sixes !

He makes much more for England than he does for Surrey , no ?

Past the 270 I wanted thumbsup

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:27 am

Wheels coming off for Sri Lanka...Curran dropped at long on. Oh dear...next ones gone for six more as the fifty stand comes up Smile

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:27 am

Sri Lankans unravelling here. Curran is dropped in the deep. And Curran hits a six a ball later as the 50 partnership comes up.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:32 am

KP_Fan will be praying Curran does not hit another six in this innings.
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:36 am

Only bad thing with this : it will encourage the nutters on BBC hys who advocate Curran to bat at three ...

Though I guess he couldn't do worse than the last few they've tried Smile

This stand has really turned the day around.

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Post by VTR on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:43 am

Yet another game changing innings from Sam Curran. He's been a ridiculously good find for England, like a Test match version of peak Lance Klusener

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:48 am

Curran caught in the deep to exit for 64. England bowled out for 285.
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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:53 am

alfie wrote:Only bad thing with this : it will encourage the nutters on BBC hys who advocate Curran to bat at three ...

Though I guess he couldn't do worse than the last few they've tried Smile

This stand has really turned the day around.

Surrey have always rated his batting highly and had expectations that he would become a genuine all-rounder rather than a bowling one. However, in contrast to how he's done in Tests, he struggled to make runs in the Championship much of last season. Odd.

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Post by eirebilly on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:56 am

He has some skills does Curran but I would like to see him work more on his bowling. He is decent enough for T20 and ODI matches but he is not there yet at test level.
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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 10:57 am

Suspect he may become a genuine all rounder ...though I wouldn't be rushing him up the order just yet. As long as he can justify a place with his bowling , having his batting at eight/nine is a tremendous bonus for England.

That 285 looks a goodish score given the signs of assistance for the spinners already...the sixty for the last wicket was very handy !

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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 11:03 am

alfie wrote:Suspect he may become a genuine all rounder ...though I wouldn't be rushing him up the order just yet. As long as he can justify a place with his bowling , having his batting at eight/nine is a tremendous bonus for England.

That 285 looks a goodish score given the signs of assistance for the spinners already...the sixty for the last wicket was very handy !

In a similar vein - and even though I'm not a great fan - a second successive score of 30+ from Rashid was definitely handy. Still need to see him do his day job, mind.

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Post by Duty281 on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 11:19 am

VTR wrote:Yet another game changing innings from Sam Curran. He's been a ridiculously good find for England, like a Test match version of peak Lance Klusener

He reminds me of Stuart Broad before the injury.

England have a semi-competitive total purely because of Curran.

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 11:26 am

Should be more than semi-competitive if this pitch lives up to its billing...

Batting last wont be easy.

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Post by alfie on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 11:29 am

What a beauty from Leach ! Cleans up Kaushal...and he'd have bowled a lot of men with that ...

The start England wanted thumbsup

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 12:04 pm

What a knock from Curran - and again Rashid added a handy 30. Even some sweeps from the Burnley Lara too!

For me, england are on top here - this pitch is only gonna turn more and I wouldn’t fancy chasing even 150 in the 4th on it. 285 is a good score first dig. Buttler and Burns with good knocks too

Shame they couldn’t pickup more than one before close - but plenty of close shaves. I’d be surprised if Sri Lanka reach parity tomorrow
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Post by Mad for Chelsea on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 12:29 pm

Afternoon everyone. Didn't catch any of England's knock, but from what I saw when SL batted it looks like a tough pitch to bat on, so I'm with Olly on this. Fancy 285 may prove to be a more than handy total.

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 12:34 pm

guildfordbat wrote:However, in contrast to how he's done in Tests, he struggled to make runs in the Championship much of last season. Odd.


Could that partly be due to the circumstances hes come in at? For Surrey this season he would rarely have come in with the side under pressure and a low total. For England almost all of his runs have come when hes had to come out and bat with responsibility and focus in game changing situations.

Long term he needs to offer more with the ball than just some left arm variation and home pitch swing though, or push his batting to be competing with the likes of Stokes for a top 6 batting place. Hes still yet to score a first class or list A century let alone a test one, unlike Woakes and Moeen who've occupied the 8 spot recently....so whilst his consistency and the manner in which hes scored match changing runs is noteworthy hes not really a true all rounder.

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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 2:02 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:However, in contrast to how he's done in Tests, he struggled to make runs in the Championship much of last season. Odd.


Could that partly be due to the circumstances hes come in at? For Surrey this season he would rarely have come in with the side under pressure and a low total. For England almost all of his runs have come when hes had to come out and bat with responsibility and focus in game changing situations.

Long term he needs to offer more with the ball than just some left arm variation and home pitch swing though, or push his batting to be competing with the likes of Stokes for a top 6 batting place. Hes still yet to score a first class or list A century let alone a test one, unlike Woakes and Moeen who've occupied the 8 spot recently....so whilst his consistency and the manner in which hes scored match changing runs is noteworthy hes not really a true all rounder.

Goose - yeah, it probably was partly due to that although I don't think entirely. Although Surrey took the Championship fairly comfortably with an impressive winning run, they sometimes had to come back from behind in games. I forget the details of Curran's knocks but I'm pretty there were times when we were looking for first innings runs from him to restore parity or gain a lead which didn't materialise even though, as it turned out, our second innings showing was strong enough to get the win.

Despite the predictable Surrey bias, I'm not as sold on Curran as some. To be clear, I like him and regard him as very capable but with more still to come and more consistently over longer periods in a match. It would be grossly unfair to categorise him as a bits and pieces player but his best contributions for England do atm do seem to come in chunks rather than being too evenly spread across more of the game. I think that fits in with respect and admiration for his 64 today but also your reservation about him yet to score a century for country or even county. Admittedly, it is still early days for him and this isn't meant as a dig, more just an acknowledgement that more will be needed and hopefully is to come.

Btw, if anyone needed evidence as to how the game (or, at least, the approach to it) has changed over the years - Curran struck six sixes in the hour or so he was at the crease after tea. The same number Bradman hit in his entire Test career. Shocked

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 2:26 pm

All the talk about moving Curran up to 3 is extremely premature. (Looking at Nick Compton in the main). It would be great if Surrey could move him up during teh early games next season - though with bowler friendly conditions that could be a bit of a hospital pass.

The main thing with Curran is he seems to have the temperament for test cricket, and seems to have the technique to block and slog. He scored 1 from 19 balls while Buttler was there, was 14 from 58 when Rashid was out, 16 from 65 when Leach was out. He then switched gears completely when Anderson came in smashing  48 from just 54 balls.

I wonder if he will be one of those players who always seems to perform better for England than his county? (though it should be noted that he has close to 2,000 FC runs and 132 FC wickets despite not being 21 until next summer.)

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 3:05 pm

Another remarkable performance by Sam Curran. Shocked clap clap I continue to be rather surprised and very impressed at how well he has batted for England. Not least the temperament and maturity he has shown in a series of telling contributions. I recall seeing him score a very stylish 40 odd against Lancs at the Oval last Summer and thinking that his batting had regained its initial promise after a while in the doldrums. But I had no expectation that he would be repeatedly rescuing England with his batting and not just as a one-off.

It's easy to think of situations and pitches in which he might struggle to justify his place, but for the moment one can only applaud his exploits.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 5:53 pm

Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Another remarkable performance by Sam Curran.  Shocked clap clap I continue to be rather surprised and very impressed at how well he has batted for England.  Not least the temperament and maturity he has shown in a series of telling contributions.  I recall seeing him score a very stylish 40 odd against Lancs at the Oval last Summer and thinking that his batting had regained its initial promise after a while in the doldrums. But I had no expectation that he would be repeatedly rescuing England with his batting and not just as a one-off.

It's easy to think of situations and pitches in which he might struggle to justify his place, but for the moment one can only applaud his exploits.

Well so far in his England career he has scored runs when they were desperately needed and he has done it on seaming pitches and spinning pitches.
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Post by Corporalhumblebucket on Wed 14 Nov 2018, 8:04 pm

CaledonianCraig wrote:
Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Another remarkable performance by Sam Curran.  Shocked clap clap I continue to be rather surprised and very impressed at how well he has batted for England.  Not least the temperament and maturity he has shown in a series of telling contributions.  I recall seeing him score a very stylish 40 odd against Lancs at the Oval last Summer and thinking that his batting had regained its initial promise after a while in the doldrums. But I had no expectation that he would be repeatedly rescuing England with his batting and not just as a one-off.

It's easy to think of situations and pitches in which he might struggle to justify his place, but for the moment one can only applaud his exploits.

Well so far in his England career he has scored runs when they were desperately needed and he has done it on seaming pitches and spinning pitches.

Yes, he's done remarkably well so far. I was thinking mainly about the penetration of his bowling when there are pitches which don't help swing. (I guess he's helped here by spinning pitches as well as the number of England all rounders of various kinds - which mean that he's not bowling a lot and any wickets are a bit of a bonus.) But he's very young and so could potentially up his pace a bit and of course he's already proved that he's a very fast learner. So anything is possible.

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Post by alfie on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 6:26 am

Quite brilliant piece of fielding from Stokes to get a much needed break for England - after the Sri Lankan third wicket pair had threatened to take charge of this match...the speed of that gather and throw and the direct hit does the trick where the bowlers couldn't ...

And he's in the action again with a fine grab at slip to get rid of Mendis already ! Two for Leach now and at 136/4 it is suddenly England on top again...just in time for lunch in five minutes .

Really needed those : if the home team had gone in to lunch with just the night watchman gone they'd have fancied getting parity at least. Looks a different game now.

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Post by alfie on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 6:30 am

I like this move from Root : Rashid (who took some stick earlier) getting a chance at Matthews last over before lunch. Good psychology...though no breakthrough.

Busy session this : 31 overs , 112 runs 3 wickets ...and even one more over coming up !

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Post by alfie on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 6:38 am

Karunaratne with his excellent 63 and Dhananjaya had a great - and rapid - 96 run stand : but those two wickets have swung it around again . Sri Lanka will be hoping Dhananjaya can go on from his 57 no and the former skipper can play an innings.

Game still fairly even , I think , though I'd rather have England's position. If Sri Lanka can get close to the 285 they have a chance , even batting last ; as you wouldn't rule out an England collapse in the second innings.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 7:23 am

Rashid strikes shortly after lunch. Sri Lanka 146 for 5 and trail by 139.
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Post by CaledonianCraig on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 7:34 am

Angel Mathew's is the key here. If he can hang around and hit another of his 50s then Sri Lanka could end up close to parity or even a narrow lead. If England can remove him quickly then they could take a nice little lead of 30 to 50 runs into the second innings.
CaledonianCraig
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Post by guildfordbat on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 7:44 am

CaledonianCraig wrote:Rashid strikes shortly after lunch. Sri Lanka 146 for 5 and trail by 139.

Hi Craig and all - Rashid got a lot of turn there, didn't here. On first viewing, I thought the ball had missed the edge.

Just been catching up. Appalling way for the nightwatchman to get out - he had done his job the previous evening but that didn't give him the ok to lose all sense today. At least that didn't unnerve Sri Lanka's 'proper' batsmen. Looked a troublesome stand for England to deal with until Stokes and his brilliance came to the party.

Currently 164/5, Sri Lanka trailing by 121. Given one of those wickets was the nightwatchman, I don't think there's much in it atm.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 7:49 am

Mathews out for 20 from a spinning delivery from Rashid taken at the second attempt by Ben Foakes. Sri Lanka 165 for 6 and still 120 adrift.
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Post by guildfordbat on Thu 15 Nov 2018, 7:51 am

The Rashid / Foakes combo gets another - Mathews, Craig's key.

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