The Build to England’s Summer of Cricket

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Wed 13 Feb 2019, 11:25 am

First topic message reminder :

It’s a little early for separate World Cup and Ashes threads, but with the Windies giving England less wins than they might have liked, what confidence had been gained from Sri Lanka has been drained.

If anything, it feels like there were less questions in summer than there are now, with the top three even less secure, Curran’s away showings looking unconvincing so far and some questions around  places for Bairstow, Foakes and pace of Wood or similar. 

There’s also a World Cup coming, a home World Cup, something England have been building towards for quite some time. They’re a very good team, maybe better than any England World Cup team, but there’s a few issues.

It’s also worth noting opponents, although I can’t see anyone getting more discussion than the Aussies. They’ve recovered from defeat to win a home series against a very weak Sri Lanka. Their tails are up, and they could welcome back their two bets batsmen. Could, as morals might well make that a little difficult. They don’t have many here, though, so it will depend just how much of a tit Warner is in the meantime.

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Post by Gooseberry on Tue 09 Jul 2019, 5:16 pm

I'm assuming the modern era started when Murali , Vetori and Harbajahn retired then.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Tue 09 Jul 2019, 8:53 pm

Moeen should clearly play ahead of Leach, not a debate for me. Moeen has been excellent since his return to the side with the ball.

I see Robbo mentions his last ashes tour - if people remember correctly he had an injury to his spinning finger, and thus couldn’t bowl as well as usual and yeah Crane was the backup who they didn’t want to play...great selection! That was a bad bad tour...
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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 12:34 am

guildfordbat wrote:
Gooseberry wrote:I'd respectfully say that Sibley is stil there abouts the top of the county averages and aggregate runs scored as despite one failing is putting hand up.

Burns Sibley Roy as the top 3 could be a consideration. Massively short of experience, but Denly was rubbish when picked and hasnt done anything to change my mind since.

Denly played a good hand for Kent yesterday. I was also impressed by Crawley who has just been named in the Lions team. I posted a bit more on the current Surrey match thread if anyone is interested.

I neglected to add that Ed Smith was watching which might just have bearing.

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 8:37 am

If Roy is being lined-up to open, I'd prefer him at 3 if selected, then Sam Northeast must be in with a decent shot at number 3. He's a good player of the short ball and has more longevity to his county performances than Sibley.

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 9:01 am

guildfordbat wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:
Gooseberry wrote:I'd respectfully say that Sibley is stil there abouts the top of the county averages and aggregate runs scored as despite one failing is putting hand up.

Burns Sibley Roy as the top 3 could be a consideration. Massively short of experience, but Denly was rubbish when picked and hasnt done anything to change my mind since.

Denly played a good hand for Kent yesterday. I was also impressed by Crawley who has just been named in the Lions team. I posted a bit more on the current Surrey match thread if anyone is interested.

I neglected to add that Ed Smith was watching which might just have bearing.

Surely he was just there watching the Surrey players?  Whistle

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 9:11 am

king_carlos wrote:If Roy is being lined-up to open, I'd prefer him at 3 if selected, then Sam Northeast must be in with a decent shot at number 3. He's a good player of the short ball and has more longevity to his county performances than Sibley.


Has Northeast ever batted top 3? Hes batting 4 this season isnt he. 
hes certainly one who could be in consideration for an England spot, especially now Pope is borked. But wouldn't it be 4-6 slots hes competing for and someone like Bairstow or Root having to push up to 3 again to accommodate him? Notwisthsatnding that we are talking about Roy as an opener of course, but hes a seasoned international now at least. Theres been a fair argument that a lot of players (Pope in particular) got chucked under the bus a bit being asked to bat higher in tests for their international debuts than they do in CC. 

Not sure how much fending off 80mph blobbers from 40 year old county bowlers who cant control their length  matches up to facing a 95mph head hunter from Starc either, but that kind of applies to anyone we are judging from county cricket scores.

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Post by Nathaniel Jacobs on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 11:05 am

Gooseberry wrote:I'm assuming the modern era started when Murali , Vetori and Harbajahn retired then.
We are talking about off spinners so you can put Vettori to one side.

Murali was more a wrist spinner, unorthodox off spin tbh.

Harbhajan was a massive hype job. Got exposed outside India on pretty much every occasion.

Lyon is considerably better than Harbhajan.

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Post by Nathaniel Jacobs on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 11:07 am

king_carlos wrote:If Roy is being lined-up to open, I'd prefer him at 3 if selected, then Sam Northeast must be in with a decent shot at number 3. He's a good player of the short ball and has more longevity to his county performances than Sibley.
Roy in the Test side is just a desperation move. The red ball actually moves around and Roy’s technique is poor. Even batting on a road at the Oval, his first class average is under 40.

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Post by Nathaniel Jacobs on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 11:11 am

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:Moeen should clearly play ahead of Leach, not a debate for me. Moeen has been excellent since his return to the side with the ball.

I see Robbo mentions his last ashes tour - if people remember correctly he had an injury to his spinning finger, and thus couldn’t bowl as well as usual and yeah Crane was the backup who they didn’t want to play...great selection! That was a bad bad tour...
Moeen’s form is more fluke than his actual ability. There’s no chance in hell he could sustain a bowling average of 23 over a long period.

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Post by alfie on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 1:07 pm

In fairness , Nathaniel , Moeen has sustained a pretty good bowling record in England for several years now.

He mightn't always look the part but the results have been there. Which is what counts , no ?

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Post by Pal Joey on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 2:05 pm

He seems to have been poorly treated of late, no?
Or maybe they are just resting him; having a quiet word in his ear. Getting him properly prepped up again.

Then they'll unleash him again on the unsuspecting convict rabble at the opportune time?
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Post by Nathaniel Jacobs on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 2:54 pm

alfie wrote:In fairness , Nathaniel , Moeen has sustained a pretty good bowling record in England for several years now.

He mightn't always look the part but the results have been there.  Which is what counts , no ?
No Moeen is a joke bowler in any conditions. At home, we’ve literally played on raging green tops, this benefits Moeen as they opponents chance their arm against him and he gets cheap wickets.

You only have to look at Moeen’s ineptitude away from home against the stronger sides, he’s cost England so many matches.

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Post by guildfordbat on Wed 10 Jul 2019, 7:46 pm

Nathaniel Jacobs wrote:Lyon is one of the greatest finger spinners of the modern era. Moeen is rubbish. But England refuse to select Leach

Whistle

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Post by Gooseberry on Thu 11 Jul 2019, 2:32 pm

Cook seems to think its going to be Burns Roy Denly as the top 3 for England. 
(Aggers sledged him for getting out to Broad on a flat wicket the other day)

Farbrace also believes in him. Also mentioned Sibley and Crawley as the next cabs off the rank because of their temperaments.


Last edited by Gooseberry on Thu 11 Jul 2019, 3:09 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by alfie on Thu 11 Jul 2019, 3:06 pm

Bayliss likes Roy. Guess with - probably - Burns and (Denly ? Hmm) - both more steady types they can risk trying one dasher at the top.

May not work. But looking as if they'll try him. At least he's in good form...

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Post by Gooseberry on Thu 11 Jul 2019, 3:09 pm

Seeing off Starc in the way he has today wont have done his chances any harm.

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Post by alfie on Thu 11 Jul 2019, 3:16 pm

Gooseberry wrote:Seeing off Starc in the way he has today wont have done his chances any harm.

Yes he's perhaps more "solid" than he used to be against good new ball stuff. Though the red ball and four slips are a different sort of challenge. Time will tell.

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 4:44 am

guildfordbat wrote:
Nathaniel Jacobs wrote:Lyon is one of the greatest finger spinners of the modern era. Moeen is rubbish. But England refuse to select Leach

Whistle

Leach played for the Lions and went 75/0 off 17
Sam Curran 70/1

Neithers really asking to be picked right now. Lewis Gregory the best bowler snagging both openers.

Wades made another statement to further embarrass whoever decided to play Maxwell ahead of him the other day with another century, Head not out on 130.

The second string Aus team has had a really strong tour so far and theres a number of players who will most likely play in the tests. Paine is going to be a problem with both Wade and Carey warranting inclusion in the side, really theres no point to him being picked other than that hes the captain.

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Post by VTR on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 6:57 am

Australia are shaping up well. I think it's their time to win The Ashes in England, something they now haven't done for a hard to believe 18 years. I reckon they come out on the right side of a close series, maybe securing them with a tie in the last match Very Happy

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Post by robbo277 on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 7:44 am

So England's next bit of cricket will be taking on Ireland in a test match.

I think there are enough question marks over the team that you play your strongest XI and go from there, assuming everyone is fit. As most people on the board at least seem to be settling on:

Burns, Sibley, Roy, Root (C), Stokes, Buttler, Bairstow, Woakes, Ali, Broad, Anderson

Looks like a good bet for this test and the first Ashes test. Whether Denly will be persevered with remains to be seen.

We could possibly rest some of those World Cup stars from 5-8 (Roy being unproven and we're unlikely to rest the captain, so they aren't options to rest) and use any of Foakes, Pope and Sam Curran, if we felt they need it, but they've got a week off now and it would be good for them to get some red ball cricket in before the Ashes.

The question is obviously over Anderson's fitness, which could open the door for Curran again, or if they were happy their World Cup bowlers were fresh enough then Archer or Wood could come into consideration.

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Post by Duty281 on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 8:32 am

It's a very difficult Ashes series to call. I don't really know where England's test team are in terms of ability. They thrashed India at home and thrashed Sri Lanka away - two brilliant results - but then played some of the worst cricket I've ever seen an England team play when they lost a series to a very underwhelming West Indies (I still have nightmares about that inexplicable, record-breaking 295 partnership between the might of Holder and Dowrich!).

On paper, England have some excellent seam bowlers, but they will surely be undermined by the weak top three and questionable middle order. How many times will we see England 11/2 this summer?! And England haven't lost a test series at home since 2014 against the Sri Lankans, so they must be doing something right! Australia have the stronger overall team, but their batsmen really struggle in these English conditions.

I think I'll say England to win the series, but only because it's Edgbaston first up and that's a guaranteed 1-0 before we've even started!

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 10:20 am

Are we any more aware of fitness issues around Archer and Anderson? (And Rashid, for that matter, who I am sure was at least in the back of their mind as an option.) And Wood looked hurt as he left the field in the final, but he does kind of always look hurt.

Feels like those two being out puts it straight to Woakes, Broad, Wood. Probably blows any chance of resting Wood and Woakes, not that they necessarily need that, but there is Curran there, if needed.

It is interesting for the Ashes, as now we really could have decisions to be made in the bowling. Wood and Archer add something different, Broad and Woakes most at threat. You would think that Woakes's ability with the bat allied with Ali's lack of form mean that Sir Chris is becoming more indispensable.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 10:34 am

I wouldn't be shocked if Gregory is in their thoughts more than we might anticipate - they like to make guys they are having a serious look at captain of the Lions...and he bowled the best of all the seamers yesterday by all accounts (and has the best figures). Been on fire the past two years too
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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 11:14 am

Its hard to say what they will do with the Ireland game. Youd think they want Anderson and Broad to play if fit, but how many of the world cup folk?
Assume Archer is being considered for the Ashes youd think he'd have to play, but he may need to recuperate that injury. Bowling 20 plus overs in a day in tests for the first time is a dangerous ask for a young guy whos just been through the most intense set of matches in his career. Im not even sure its worth risking his long term fitness on the Ashes, but the England folk will have a much better idea of what his body can handle and hopefully manage him accordingly. They certainly know hes a quick learner, skilled, and not over awed by whatever is thrown infront of him so he has all the ingredients to be and all formats star, its just a case of is this too much too soon?
Roy has to play the Ireland game if they are considering him as an opener, which is one of the worst kept secrets in cricket. Bairstow could maybe do with some time behind the stumps too.
Moeen could do with the game time to answer the questions regarding him vs Leach. Denly should play too unless hes being jettisoned for Sibley. Burns too.

Buttler, Root, Stokes I think should be rested as theyve had very heavy loads over the past years (Stokes did get some breaks last summer mind)

So for Ireland Im thinking something like :

Burns
Roy
Sibley/Denly
Root
Bairstow
Northeast
Moeen
Gregory
Archer/Wood
Broad
Anderson

Maybe they will want to play a first choice XI pending fitness just to give them time together. Hard to know. Either way many of the Aussies are going to have had a better preparation than many of the England players. Stokes and co are likely to need a few days off for hangovers if nothing else.

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Post by alfie on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 11:32 am

Well Wood did look a bit injured as he walked off...reckon he'd be an injury doubt. They could pick almost any bunch of bowlers for this match depending on how they want to play it...as deadly serious must win ; as warm up for Ashes ; or as trial for hopefuls...

On another point : I'd nearly settled on Roy for a Test spot despite doubts : but watching him all at sea against Boult and Henry yesterday (might have been out several times before he managed to actually edge one - looked clueless) makes me think that Starc and Hazlewood will be absolutely salivating at the prospect of bowling to him with a red ball next month...
OK , yes , he did fine (outstanding , even) against the Aussies the other day. But the Aussies frankly were rattled by their own lousy batting . Tried too hard and simply didn't bowl well - Starc in particular would admit he had a shocker with the ball.
An article in the local paper here the other day suggested England were deceiving themselves in trying to take white ball form into Tests , at least in the case of Roy. Yesterday would give that columnist a bit of ammunition.

I think it is likely they will still try him. I'm less confident now of this being a winning move ( against Australia : he might very well make hay against Ireland ). Fear we might see one blazing fifty in fast time and a lot of swift exits ; though I guess pitch conditions will have an influence.
And of course the alternatives aren't exactly numerous or overwhelmingly convincing !

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 11:41 am

Well Sam Curran has run through the middle lower order of Australia A this morning, including Paine for a duck to get a 5 wicket haul. Reminding people he is still firmly in contention
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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 11:52 am

I would never usually call for Roy, but the alternatives seem very lacking. It seems a boom or bust move, which is a bit of an improvement on just the bust.

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Post by alfie on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 11:53 am

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:Well Sam Curran has run through the middle lower order of Australia A this morning, including Paine for a duck to get a 5 wicket haul. Reminding people he is still firmly in contention

Think he is a definite chance in English conditions. Dangerous when it swings ; and they (we) love his late order batting.
Depends on who else is fit etc but he has to be in the mix.

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:01 pm

Yeah, he's been somewhat cast aside but it is English conditions. We could go really strong and ballsy and pick for conditions.

I'm all in for Sibley already. I know nothing about him, but that means I know less bad things.

Does anyone ever play without a spinner any more? Could Curran/Woakes take Ali's spot and the overs a spinner gets through be taken up by Stokes, Woakes/Curran and Root?

Not that I think Ali will be awful, English test conditions and the way we work could bring his form back, I'm just curious as to whether there's an argument for getting an extra seam option and whether anyone ever does it


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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:12 pm

Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Yeah, he's been somewhat cast aside but it is English conditions. We could go really strong and ballsy and pick for conditions.

I'm all in for Sibley already. I know nothing about him, but that means I know less bad things.

Does anyone ever play without a spinner any more? Could Curran/Woakes take Ali's spot and the overs a spinner gets through be taken up by Stokes, Woakes/Curran and Root?

Not that I think Ali will be awful, English test conditions and the way we work could bring his form back, I'm just curious as to whether there's an argument for getting an extra seam option and whether anyone ever does it


In a first choice XI you'd already have Stokes as 4th seamer. 5 just seems excessive. Denly does offer some part time spin if he plays, but I dont see England doing without one, especially as Moeen has a good home record and some Australian bats are pretty incapable of playing spinners of any level. 
If theres lots in the pitch for seamers its likely to be a low scorer shirt game, no need for 5 seamers. If its a pancake the spinners offer that chance of something different and some variety to make a wicket happen. There is little case not to play one really.

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:14 pm

More a question of intrigue than an idea posited. I think Ali will play, and I believe he has the ability to perform very well still. Hopefully, a World Cup win will do his confidence good, rather than the dropping and his last experience in an Ashes weighing on his mind.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:17 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Yeah, he's been somewhat cast aside but it is English conditions. We could go really strong and ballsy and pick for conditions.

I'm all in for Sibley already. I know nothing about him, but that means I know less bad things.

Does anyone ever play without a spinner any more? Could Curran/Woakes take Ali's spot and the overs a spinner gets through be taken up by Stokes, Woakes/Curran and Root?

Not that I think Ali will be awful, English test conditions and the way we work could bring his form back, I'm just curious as to whether there's an argument for getting an extra seam option and whether anyone ever does it


In a first choice XI you'd already have Stokes as 4th seamer. 5 just seems excessive. Denly does offer some part time spin if he plays, but I dont see England doing without one, especially as Moeen has a good home record and some Australian bats are pretty incapable of playing spinners of any level. 
If theres lots in the pitch for seamers its likely to be a low scorer shirt game, no need for 5 seamers. If its a pancake the spinners offer that chance of something different and some variety to make a wicket happen. There is little case not to play one really.

Goose has summed it up pretty perfectly here - final innings of a game, you're going to see and need some spin most likely in all situations, no matter how seam friendly it is.

It was mooted last summer (maybe the summer before) about playing 5 seamers and no spinner and Bayliss was very firm in saying something along the lines of "if you need 5 seamers that means your 4 aren't doing the job, and we don't pick players to not do a job".
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Post by alfie on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:40 pm

Five pace bowlers is obviously overkill. If you can't find a spinner worth his spot just pick an extra batsman

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:48 pm

Well, Stokes is often quite part-time thus it's Woakes, Broad, Anderson, Archer in this scenario, with Stokes and Root/Denly as part-timers.

None of you are wrong, I think Bayliss' point is actually great management around it, just thinking aloud.

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 12:55 pm

Stokes is less part time in tests than he is ODIs. He was limited to the number of overs he bowled by injury for a while too. 

I guess being able to include a luxury player like Archer is the one argument you could make in favour of having no full time spinner, but again its a hard one to really sustain unless they feel genuine pace is vital but also cant live without 3 swing bowlers. 

I dont feel Broads immortal anymore, even at home. He lost out in Sri Lanka when they were playing a side made up of wicket keepers and spinners, and they have experimented with a number of people taking the new ball off him in recent times. Thats another way of getting Archer into the side, but would rely on the other bowlers picking up additional overs to limit how much he bowls.

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Post by JDizzle on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 1:36 pm

I don’t think Sibley is very good. Only seen him bat a few times, but doesn’t seem to pass the eye test of a guy who is ready to step up and play Test cricket.

Plus there is the strike issue... now I know, Test opener, strike rate doesn’t matter, just got to see off the new ball etc. etc. But if you are struggling to score against County attacks I just don’t see where your runs are coming from at Test level. You’ll just be tied down and have the life sucked out of you, and then you’ll get out. They’ll be no respite really. Even Cook scores at 50 in FC cricket, Sibley is down at 41. If you can’t rotate the strike, you are putting pressure on your partner and leaving your team in a hole.

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 2:57 pm

True JD but didnt we spend ages moaning that England didnt have any proper top 3 batsmen who can stick around? You cant have it both ways.
But that's where Roy comes in ...either 2 or 3.
Then the third spot you have a choice between trying to break Bairstow or Root again or picking Sibley or Denly, neither of whom loom very good.
As always England are limited by players who exist. Sibley 32 not out against Aus A right now, Denly isnt playing. I think we can see which way the winds blowing.

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:07 pm

Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:15 pm

Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.


Youve seen somersets form recently right  Rolling Eyes

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:18 pm

The Lions match is actually quite fascinating, theres commentary on BBC as well. Dont know what happened to SCurran but hes had an amazing morning taking 5 for 25! 

Crawley, Foakes and Northeast all gone for low scores. Sibley closing in on a 50 supported by James "who" Bracey. All in looking in a bit of trouble, but if Sibley can make a big score from a tough spot that will add a lot to his credentials.

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Post by Afro on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:19 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.


Youve seen somersets form recently right  Rolling Eyes

You need to check back to when Tresco lost his place in the Somerset team
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:21 pm

Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.

Was watching some Ashes 2005 highlights the other day, and watching him spank Lee/McGrath/Gillespie all over Old Trafford was beautiful. What a shame we were denied a good 5-10 years of his international career by that mental illness, Trescothick/Strauss/Cook would have been a heck of a top 3!
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Post by alfie on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:21 pm

Would be surprised if Broad were left out...he has wrecked Australia more than once in England and as long as he's in decent form I think he starts.
I suspect we will see Archer at some point but maybe not at the beginning. He's not played a lot of red ball cricket lately and the load of a Test Match is a different thing to ten overs in an ODI. Besides he might just need a bit of a break given he's played all the WC matches at full effort and battled a bit of an injury at times.
Fitness issues may decide the bowling makeup anyway. At least they ave plenty of options : see TRJ back in the wickets - remember him ?

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Post by Gooseberry on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:22 pm

Afro wrote:
Gooseberry wrote:
Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.


Youve seen somersets form recently right  Rolling Eyes

You need to check back to when Tresco lost his place in the Somerset team

Cant even get in a side worse than Surrey  Hug

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Post by Afro on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:25 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
Afro wrote:
Gooseberry wrote:
Dolphin Ziggler wrote:Just pick Trescothick. For everything at home. Forever.


Youve seen somersets form recently right  Rolling Eyes

You need to check back to when Tresco lost his place in the Somerset team

Cant even get in a side worse than Surrey  Hug

Oh cmon. We're still top of the table (for now)
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Post by king_carlos on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 3:48 pm

1.Burns
2.Sibley
3.Roy
4.Root (c)
5.Stokes
6.Buttler
7.Bairstow (wk)
8.Woakes
9.Curran/Archer
10.Broad
11.Leach

I think Anderson will be rested for the Ireland test. His form in the CC was bordering on the ridiculous so rhythm won't be an issue.

I'd like to see Leach brought in as sole spinner. I'm not in the Moeen is the worst spinner of all time camp. I do think Leach can offer more as a sole spinner though. With Woakes at 8 there is no worry about batting depth either.

I'm not convinced by Sibley but he's earnt his chance from a barren cupboard. It's a shame that Hameed didn't kick on from that early season century.

If Bairstow were rested for Ireland and Foakes hit another Test century it would produce yet another interesting debate.

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Post by Dolphin Ziggler on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 4:52 pm

I think you have to bowl Ali if he’s the plan for the summer.

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Post by guildfordbat on Mon 15 Jul 2019, 9:36 pm

Gooseberry wrote:True JD but didnt we spend ages moaning that England didnt have any proper top 3 batsmen who can stick around? You cant have it both ways.
But that's where Roy comes in ...either 2 or 3.
Then the third spot you have a choice between trying to break Bairstow or Root again or picking Sibley or Denly, neither of whom loom very good.
As always England are limited by players who exist. Sibley 32 not out against Aus A right now, Denly isnt playing. I think we can see which way the winds blowing.

Hi Goose - I wouldn't stake your life on Denly making an Ireland or Ashes Test this summer but I reckon he's still in the mix. 88 and 154 in his last 3 digs (admittedly a duck in between!). He's also the man in possession having scored 69 in his last Test innings against the West Indies batting at number 3.

I wouldn't read much either way into him not being in the current Lions side. The Lions tends to be mainly made up of those who are or might be on the way up; not those in the Test side or on the way out.

What may help him as well is that the selectors will not want to bin the entire top 3 from last time out. 1 of them - yes; 2 of them - maybe; all 3 of them - very unlikely. The one almost certain to go is Jennings and that may be enough for those holding the axe. However, even if two go, it doesn't automatically have to be Denly. Jennings' last opening Test partner was Burns and he's hardly cemented his place. Burns averages a disappointing 25 from his 6 Tests (Denly a bit better at 28 from his 2 Tests). Burns has done ok in the Championship this season but hardly set it on fire.

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Post by Gooseberry on Tue 16 Jul 2019, 8:17 am

guildfordbat wrote:
Gooseberry wrote:True JD but didnt we spend ages moaning that England didnt have any proper top 3 batsmen who can stick around? You cant have it both ways.
But that's where Roy comes in ...either 2 or 3.
Then the third spot you have a choice between trying to break Bairstow or Root again or picking Sibley or Denly, neither of whom loom very good.
As always England are limited by players who exist. Sibley 32 not out against Aus A right now, Denly isnt playing. I think we can see which way the winds blowing.

Hi Goose -  I wouldn't stake your life on Denly making an Ireland or Ashes Test this summer but I reckon he's still in the mix. 88 and 154 in his last 3 digs (admittedly a duck in between!). He's also the man in possession having scored 69 in his last Test innings against the West Indies batting at number 3.

I wouldn't read much either way into him not being in the current Lions side. The Lions tends to be mainly made up of those who are or might be on the way up; not those in the Test side or on the way out.

What may help him as well is that the selectors will not want to bin the entire top 3 from last time out. 1 of them - yes; 2 of them - maybe; all 3 of them - very unlikely. The one almost certain to go is Jennings and that may be enough for those holding the axe. However, even if two go, it doesn't automatically have to be Denly. Jennings' last opening Test partner was Burns and he's hardly cemented his place. Burns averages a disappointing 25 from his 6 Tests (Denly a bit better at 28 from his 2 Tests). Burns has done ok in the Championship this season but hardly set it on fire.


As I see it the most likely is that Burns will keep his place, indications from all sources are that Roy will make his debut. That just leaves the third place open between Denly and either Sibley or someone bumping up the order again. Thats not binning the entire top 3, just one of them. They changed two quite regularly at the start of series. 

Keaton Jennings surely has to go, I think we all agree that. Hes had enough opportunities now and failed home and away, and is far too vulnerable to a swinging ball. Whilst there was an a theory on his initial selection that he would be good against Australia I cant see how that carries him into the Ashes. His County season hasnt been great, and ultimately this is a mature layer with a first class average of 33. He just isnt good enough.

I cant see how Denly gets in ahead of Burns. Burns was picked ahead of him initially and is a full time opener, and importantly is young enough to improve over time. At 33 Denly is right at the end of his useful life, hes also never really been good enough. Burns is having a far better county season (although he has stuttered a bit recently) if thats worth anything. Denly losing his place in the ODI squad to Liam Dawson of all people shows that people in the England camp dont rate him very highly, and hes always looked out of his depth in international cricket. 
I get your point about the Lions, but for I wouldve thought if they were serious about giving him another bite they wouldve wanted to see him facing Australian bowlers. Whilst its not as strong an attack as they picked for some of the list A game there is a number of possible test players in that Aussie side. He is having a good county season though, and I suppose he is the only one of them that actually bats at 3 regularly.  

Sibley meanwhile is playing in that Lions game. He showed some real grind to make 74 holding the innings together with wickets tumbling around him (including Crawely who is the other young talent), just getting out right at at the close of play sadly. Mind that was to Mitchell Marsh which should probably make him ineligible to play for England ever, but its exactly the sort of determined stick around innings that Englands top 3 have struggled to produce in recent years. Assuming that Roy does get picked thats exactly the kind of player England will want around him to bolster things up. He certainly wont have done his chances any harm, and it will be interesting to see how he goes in the second innings. Hes having an amazing county season, by far the highest run scorer including a recent 244 which is something I couldnt imagine Roy Jennings or Denly ever managing. Of all the contenders hes the closest to having a FC average of 40 (39 currently) and that is heading in the right direction, hes getting better and is young enough to push to another level. 

Personally I think England would be foolish to stick with players they know wont ever be good enough like Jennings and Denly. The one think that may just sway it for Denly is his legspin as an option for dead pitches, but thats a very peripheral consideration and hes been barely used internationally in any format which suggests the leadership dont place much faith in it. 



Last note on Sam Currans day, quite a statement to make. 5 for 25 with the ball, 32 not out with the bat in difficult circumstances. I really have issues with his lack of pace but the guy is making areal habit of pulling things out of the bag when England are in trouble. Id have Woakes over him every day of the week but if he has many more days like that its hard to ignore his claim.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly on Tue 16 Jul 2019, 8:26 am

Mark Wood out of the Ireland test with an injury.
Archer (as reported here by me!) has been given a week off in Barbados to help recooperate, following needing to take pain killing injections to get through the final few world cup games.
Woakes also a candidate to be rested for the Ireland game.

Positive news - Anderson is ahead of schedule with his injury, and wants to play the Ireland test, albeit England might be cautious.

Sam Curran is expected to play against Ireland
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