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England v South Africa, The Oval, 1st Test Thread

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Post by Duty281 Wed 18 Jul 2012, 9:40 pm

Here we go then, England v South Africa at The Oval where the battle for Number 1 will commence. A win or draw in the series for England will see them retain that coveted spot whereas South Africa need a series win to take the crown. This will be a true battle of the World's two best Test teams. Here are the lineups:

1 Andrew Strauss (capt), 2 Alastair Cook, 3 Jonathan Trott, 4 Kevin Pietersen, 5 Ian Bell, 6 Ravi Bopara, 7 Matt Prior (wk), 8 Tim Bresnan, 9 Graeme Swann, 10 Stuart Broad, 11 James Anderson

England bat down to 10 with the formidable Cook opening (made 294 less than 12 months ago), KP (who walks into any team at the moment) and the best WK batsmen in the game, Matt Prior (averages over 40 and he bats at 7). Add the fact that their probable No.8 bats with an average over 40! England have probably the best all-round bowling attack in the game - 2 World-class quicks, a World-'class spinner and a very good all-rounder in Tim Bresnan who averages over 40 with the bat and under 30 with the ball. One weak link though, Ravi Bopara.

1 Graeme Smith (capt), 2 Alviro Petersen, 3 Hashim Amla, 4 Jacques Kallis, 5 AB de Villiers (wk), 6 Jacques Rudolph, 7 JP Duminy, 8 Vernon Philander, 9 Dale Steyn, 10 Morne Morkel, 11 Imran Tahir

7 specalist batsmen which includes the best no.3 in the World and the best all-rounder seen in this era. There's also Graeme Smith and De Villiers who both average a shade under 50. Then the best fast bowling attack in the World, Steyn (best bowler in the World), Morkel and Philander (average of 14.15 in 7 Tests). Weak links? Petersen isn't the best opener, Boucher the usual WK is injured and Tahir is far from the best spinner in the World.

Cricinfo Preview

My series prediction: 2-0 England.

Enjoy the game!


Last edited by Duty281 on Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:01 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post by skyeman Wed 18 Jul 2012, 10:19 pm

Nice summary thumbsup

The weather report: Thursday, Overcast at the start, possible rain mid-afternoon. Friday, rain on and off throughout the day. Sat, Sun and Mon, bright and dry.

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Post by LuvSports! Wed 18 Jul 2012, 10:36 pm

i cannot wait this should be an absolute cracker. England will have to be at their very best to win this because imo i think SA's best is better than England's but they just aren't as consistent.

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Post by mystiroakey Wed 18 Jul 2012, 10:46 pm

booooyaaa. golf and cricket all day tommorow! working from home for sure

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Post by Liam Wed 18 Jul 2012, 11:45 pm

Don't fancy the side batting first tomorrow looking at the weather conditions. Looking at the final 3 days you want to batting second and make use of the batting conditions and a traditionally flat oval pitch and get a big first innings score.

Even though I am a huge Finn fan, I would prefer Bresnan in the side simply due to his batting. Runs are crucial in thise series with the quality of the two bowling attacks, and having a long tail is crucial for England as I don't think there's much to come after Duminy for SA. Bresnan will also get more out of the overcast conditions.

Can't wait for the match to start now, should be a cracker of a series. Shame its only 3 tests, tradtionally against India and SA its always been 4 and imo its how it should be but beggars can't be choosers.

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Post by Shelsey93 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 8:48 am

martyr wrote:Don't fancy the side batting first tomorrow looking at the weather conditions. Looking at the final 3 days you want to batting second and make use of the batting conditions and a traditionally flat oval pitch and get a big first innings score.

Even though I am a huge Finn fan, I would prefer Bresnan in the side simply due to his batting. Runs are crucial in thise series with the quality of the two bowling attacks, and having a long tail is crucial for England as I don't think there's much to come after Duminy for SA. Bresnan will also get more out of the overcast conditions.

Can't wait for the match to start now, should be a cracker of a series. Shame its only 3 tests, tradtionally against India and SA its always been 4 and imo its how it should be but beggars can't be choosers.

The schedule really riles me. Not only that we only have 3 Tests, but that one is scheduled slap bang against the Olympics - forcing sport's fans to chose what to watch, and ensuring that the match gets virtually no wider public attention. We really shouldn't have played the Australian ODIs, and instead played our 5 ODIs against South Africa then. Then have 1 Test before the Olympics and 3 Tests after it. Then the 3 T20s to end the summer, before we go off to Sri Lanka.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:04 am

I am ridiculously excited/nervous about this series.

Someone made a good point above that SA's best is slightly better than England's best, and I tend to agree with that.

I remain convinced that one bad session, for either side, will see them lose the Test and likely the series.

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Post by Guest Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:05 am

Cant wait for this series to start! #buzzing

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Post by Biltong Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:09 am

I am calm, serenity has overtaken me.


Until that first bloody delivery, then I'll go into a state of earnest tension mixed with sporadic moments of elation or dispair.
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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:11 am

Toss is going to be crucial, by all accounts.

Reports are of a dry pitch, bringing reverse swing and the spinners in to the game.

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Post by Guest Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:12 am

IMO this will be the two sides

England

Strauss,Cook,Trott,KP,Bell,Bopara,Prior,Bresnan,Swann,Broad,Anderson

South Africa

Smith,Peterson,Amla,Kallis,AB,Rudolph,Duminy,Philander,Steyn,Morkel,Tahir

I hope Finn will play, however IMO its obvious that the selectors will choose bresnan.

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Post by Guest Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:13 am

Fists it usually assists spinners at the oval, whatever the weather.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:13 am

And they'd be right to choose Bresnan, too, if there is a chance of reverse swing. He is our best in that department.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:13 am

CF wrote:Fists it usually assists spinners at the oval, whatever the weather.

I know, but they're saying this is a very, very dry pitch.

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Post by Shelsey93 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:15 am

Fists of Fury wrote:
CF wrote:Fists it usually assists spinners at the oval, whatever the weather.

I know, but they're saying this is a very, very dry pitch.

I'd be surprised if there wasn't a touch of moisture underneath, given the recent weather.

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Post by LivinginItaly Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:15 am

come on England. Think the first day will set the tone for the whole series.

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Post by Guest Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:17 am

Fists of Fury wrote:
CF wrote:Fists it usually assists spinners at the oval, whatever the weather.

I know, but they're saying this is a very, very dry pitch.

always is mate Wink should be intresting.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:18 am

You're probably right, LivinginItaly. We need to be on our game from ball one.

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Post by Shelsey93 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:20 am

Fists of Fury wrote:You're probably right, LivinginItaly. We need to be on our game from ball one.

For both teams its about getting in the game on Day 1. We've seen with India over here last year, and us out in the UAE that if things go wrong at the start it is very difficult to change the momentum back the other way.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:22 am

Absolutely, Shelsey.

I think bowling first could be the key. Get in their faces, get some early wickets and get them feeling the pressure. However, a start of 100-0 would have quite the reverse. It is all very much on a knife edge.

Also, if the pitch is going to be as receptive to spin as they say then batting last may present a danger of its own...glad I'm not a captain in this one!!

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Post by Guest Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:25 am

sun's out at the oval this morning Very Happy

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Post by Biltong Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:34 am

Man there's got to be something said for technology, love watching test cricket in HD.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:40 am

I'm at work with no access to it Sad

Relying on you guys, as well as my trusty old pal cricinfo, to update me.

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Post by Biltong Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:43 am

That's why I work from home, I can never allow work to interfere with my quality of life. Wink
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Post by Galted Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:49 am

Just stuck my face up against the window & can see patches of blue sky. Might have to google interesting illnesses so I can go home early.
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Post by Cowshot Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:50 am

Looks perfect for cricket here a few miles SW of the Oval. I think I'd want to bat first bat long if possible.

(I've boycotted Sky for years, so am reliant on TMS and highlights these days. Not perfect, but bearable.)

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Post by Duty281 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 9:50 am

http://uk.weather.com/weather/today-London-UKXX0085

Weather forecast looks good up until 3. Speaking of 3, remember those 3 little words: Come on England!

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:01 am

I think Philander, despite the fact that I don't rate him very highly, will cause Cook and Strauss all kinds of problems with that consistent, nibbling line and length.

Strange really, as I saw Jeetan Patel, William Porterfield, Neil Carter and Ian Westwood play him with absolute ease.

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Post by Cowshot Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:25 am

Weather here now much cloudier than it was half an hour ago. Erm

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Post by Galted Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:28 am

bit of a grey tinge to the clouds as well
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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:30 am

All the experts saying win the toss and bat first. Pitch likely to turn.

I'm too nervous to even type now Laugh Crucial toss.

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Post by Duty281 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:33 am

Interesting stat I just heard of: South Africa haven't lost away since 2006. England haven't lost at home since 2008. If I won the toss, I'd bowl. Lots and lots of cloud about.

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:35 am

Covers going on, but no rain, dark clouds.

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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:36 am

Sounds an incredibly tough decision for whoever wins the toss.

They'll want to bat, to make use of/avoid facing the turn in the fourth innings, but will be reticent about batting under cloud cover with the bowling attacks that these two sides possess.

Like I said, I'd hate to be the captains here.

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Post by Duty281 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:37 am

I don't want to sound arrogant but South Africa aren't much in the spinners department, Tahir averages 37 with the ball.

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Post by Galted Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:38 am

SA haven't been much in the spinner's dept since Tayfield, doesn't stop them though.
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Post by Fists of Fury Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:39 am

He is still dangerous, though. He just hasn't quite got it right for them yet.

I am a Warks fan, and he did a fine job in England for us. A different level entirely, agreed, but nevertheless he can cause problems with his variations. It'd be daft to write him off.

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:43 am

Chucking it down, hopefully will not be for long. Crying or Very sad

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Post by Galted Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:46 am

evil-looking clouds over Liverpool Street, hope they're not headed SW
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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:48 am

Very Happy Covers coming off and clouds are being blown away, only a short delay and the toss coming up.

Sun coming out.

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:53 am

England win the toss and will bat Very Happy

Come on lads, good start needed.

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Post by Duty281 Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:55 am

Thought Strauss would have had a bowl but there we go. Steyn and Morkel v Strauss and Cook, bring it on!

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 10:59 am

Bressy in, as was the popular choice.

Teams;
England team
AJ Strauss*, AN Cook, IJL Trott, KP Pietersen, IR Bell, RS Bopara, MJ Prior†, TT Bresnan, GP Swann, SCJ Broad, JM Anderson

South Africa team
GC Smith*, AN Petersen, HM Amla, JH Kallis, AB de Villiers†, JA Rudolph, JP Duminy, VD Philander, DW Steyn, M Morkel, Imran Tahir

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Post by Cowshot Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:00 am

Ok, heart rate is now climbing. Very Happy

Think Strauss was right to bat. We have a good line up and should have faith in it if we want to stay no 1. Conditions might be patchy, but we ought to cope. Touch wood. Cross legs. etc etc.

Just gutted we haven't at least four Tests, but there you go.

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:10 am

5 mins before Steyn and Philander get us under way Smile

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Post by LivinginItaly Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:10 am

Will be interesting to see how the absence of Boucher will affect SA. On paper duminy at 7 appears to strengthen their batting lineup, whilst also giving them an extra spin bowling option which could be very useful if this pitch is as dry as the commentators are saying. For me a key to this series could AB de Villiers. How will he cope with keeping wicket in English conditions? Dropped catches could have a huge bearing on the result of the series. Also how will the extra burden affect his batting which is an integral part of SA's successes.

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Post by Cowshot Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:15 am

How long did it take us to be 2-4 last time?

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:18 am

Sheees a review on Strauss

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Post by Fernando Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:18 am

and he's gone....

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Post by skyeman Thu 19 Jul 2012, 11:19 am

Ump overturned Strauss gone lbw Eng 0/1 Shocked

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