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England squad for 3rd test

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alfie
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Post by GSC Tue 22 Jul 2014, 3:40 pm

BBC Sport¬†‚ÄŹ
[ltr]@BBCSport[/ltr]
  29s
England squad for 3rd Test v India: Cook, Robson Balance, Bell, Root, Moeen, Buttler, Stokes, Broad, Jordan, Woakes, Plunkett, Anderson

Prior dropped, no Kerrigan
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Post by mystiroakey Tue 22 Jul 2014, 3:47 pm

Bell should have also been dropped- but this is better than nothing!

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Post by GSC Tue 22 Jul 2014, 3:48 pm

Win nothing with kids Duty.
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Post by Gerry SA Tue 22 Jul 2014, 3:50 pm

What the hell did Kerrigan do wrong to be axed?

Southampton offers spin by all accounts. His county mate is now the national wk, perfect time to give him a chance.

Woakes for Broad and Jordan for Stokes for me.

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Post by GSC Tue 22 Jul 2014, 3:51 pm

They didn't play him at Lords and they aren't going to play him at the Rose Bowl.
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Post by jimbohammers Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:00 pm

Totally agree with the Kerrigan omission, he was terrible last game....

Wait...

He didn't play?

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Post by Scrumpy Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:07 pm

But Buttler is not ready, thats what Captain Cook said.

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Post by Duty281 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:24 pm

GSC wrote:Win nothing with kids Duty.

Eh?


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Post by mystiroakey Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:32 pm

I think you may have said it regarding the England football team. On that note- what a result Stevie G has retired..

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:48 pm

I said Buttler should have been picked for the Sri Lanka series. Prior hadn't proved fitness or form to facilitate his recall, it was Cook's thank you gesture for staying by him during the unfolding sagas prior to that. More importantly, Buttler had international form going for him, he had clearly established himself in limited overs cricket and has proved himself against international bowlers. Yes his keeping and batting needs further improvements, but it is not that England had too many options where there could be an acceptable balance between keeping and batting abilities. Bairstow can't keep or bat, Davies is not liked by the establishment and has had form and other issues. Read and Foster are not test quality batsmen. As such Buttler would have been the sensible option in the new era of England cricket. Prior was struggling for best part of a year, and had major fitness concerns at thestart of the summer.
Now that Buttler is picked, hopefully the old boys club would support him rather than undermining him publicly like the England skipper did right after Buttler's best moment in international cricket till date.
Buttler might find the test environment testing at the initial stages, but he's an outstanding talent who can do special things for England in the long run. Their record in making the best out of such players in recent times has been terrible, Pietersen, Finn.......

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:50 pm

Buttler has had good CC form going for him in recent times, Indians will do very well not to underestimate him, he could take the game away very quickly if he gets going.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:51 pm

And why is Kerrigan dropped? Didn't sit properly on the bench?

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Post by Gerry SA Tue 22 Jul 2014, 4:53 pm

msp83 wrote:Buttler has had good CC form going for him in recent times, Indians will do very well not to underestimate him, he could take the game away very quickly if he gets going.
MSP it's a Test match not a T20/ODI slogfest.
There's a reason why Buttler's FC average is low 30s...

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Post by mystiroakey Tue 22 Jul 2014, 5:07 pm

first class 33, list A 50.

its fine for a wicket keeper- especially if he can step up- 

every experienced english batsmans average has nose dived by about 5 in only a year- That is how bad they have been.

priors first class used to be about 6 lower than his test.

Buttler is young and has only played 50 or so first class matches- the potential is there

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Post by Mike Selig Tue 22 Jul 2014, 5:11 pm

Yes well I'm sure the troubles in Gaza are due to the ECB's "old boys club mentality" as well... Honestly...

There were perfectly valid reasons for picking Prior at the start of the summer, and let's not forget in his first innings he scored a good fifty and dug England out of a bit of a whole. Buttler has only been keeping regularly in multi-day games this season. The argument that he wasn't ready was a reasonable one at the time. He may still not be ready and in an ideal world Prior would have played for a couple of years and then Buttler come in. I fully accept that people were saying Buttler should play at the start of the summer, and that Prior wasn't fit enough to be brought back, and they were legitimate arguments also.

At the end of the day, picking a side is a balancing act as I've said many times: you weigh up all the issues, and make a judgement call based on them. That subsequent facts unravel which make your decision seem foolish doesn't make the decision or the reasoning wrong, even if the facts were to some extent predictable. Speaking from personal experience having picked squads and teams for going on 5 years now, you get to the tricky cases, you say "well this may happen, but I think it's worth the risk anyway", "this" does happen and you feel a bit silly, but all you can say is "well it was on the cards, we knew that, hey" and move on.

Anyway the world not being ideal and the fears of those of us backing Prior (including myself) having been proved all too valid by subsequent events, Buttler had to come in now. His keeping is OK, certainly not significantly worse than Quinton De Kock. He deserves a shot and should be given a good run of tests to prove his worth.

I'm a bit surprised Kerrigan has been dropped entirely. I didn't really expect him to play but it looked like the feeling was to get him in and around the squad and groom him for possibly being the number 1 spinner in the West Indies. That may still be the plan, and it may be more to do with Broad's injury concerns that England feel they need an extra seamer to cover. I don't know.

I still think people have to be a bit patient. You can't expect a side to rebuild (and we all agreed after Australia that England had to rebuild) in a few moments. You also can't rebuild an entire side from scratch, you need some experience in there which is why Cook, Bell, Anderson and Broad have to be in the side for now.

England have not played dreadful cricket this summer. The series against Sri Lanka came down to a few balls, and they have had their moments in both of the opening two tests. They are playing a lot of decent cricket, but letting themselves down with some dreadful passages of play. To be expected from a side rebuilding, although that is when you need your experienced hands to stand strong, which at the moment they're not doing.

There's not miracle cure really. Getting more composure, and rediscovering a bit of grit to get through the tougher moments is what's needed. Replacing Plunkett by Jordan or Woakes, dropping Bell (presumably for Taylor?) or Cook (for Hales?) isn't going to fix things in an instant.

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Post by SimonofSurrey Tue 22 Jul 2014, 5:16 pm

Gerry SA "There's a reason why Buttler's FC average is low 30s..."

But he's scored over 550 runs this season in CC1 at just under 41, proving he's more than a One Trick slogging Pony. We wouldn't have turned this series round with Prior so Buttler is the best next option. This India side is very competitive and competent without being worldbeaters - many would say it's the perfect time and place to blood a very promising but far from complete newbie.

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Post by Gerry SA Tue 22 Jul 2014, 6:09 pm

mystiroakey wrote:first class 33, list A 50.

its fine for a wicket keeper- especially if he can step up- 

every experienced english batsmans average has nose dived by about 5 in only a year- That is how bad they have been.

priors first class used to be about 6 lower than his test.

Buttler is young and has only played 50 or so first class matches- the potential is there
FC and List A aren't comparable my friend. Apples and pears...

In limited overs cricket there are no slips and deep set fields.

And for the majority of Buttler's time in the West Country, he played as a pure batsman and averaged around 30.

Yes Buttler has talent. But he's a poor keeper and not as good as batsman as some of the other keepers England couldvr selected.

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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 6:38 pm

I think the days of picking a keeper only for keeping skills is very much gone. You need your wicketkeeper to be a reasonably good batsman as well. Read and Foster aren't that, and Buttler is the next best option, in fact he could become a lot more than that in years to come. So picking him is the sensible option.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 22 Jul 2014, 7:12 pm

Butler's got the potential to be the next Matt Prior for us. His keeping is not as bad as people make out (actually a lot better than Prior's was when he came in...) And we all know the potential he has with the bat

Certainly worth giving him a go, he could be our keeper for the foreseeable future
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Post by msp83 Tue 22 Jul 2014, 7:40 pm

If Buttler can actually find a way in test cricket, he could be his own person, not the next Prior, but Jos Buttler. He has that look of something special about him. Whether he can actually deliver on all that ability has to be proven, but he does deserve his chance.

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Post by KP_fan Tue 22 Jul 2014, 9:09 pm

msp83 wrote:If Buttler can actually find a way in test cricket, he could be his own person, not the next Prior, but Jos Buttler. He has that look of something special about him. Whether he can actually deliver on all that ability has to be proven, but he does deserve his chance.

if he struggled to be even a county level keeper.....he will drop a few in every inning...and that's what India needs in a tight series
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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 1:34 pm

He has kept alright in ODIs, and between him and Bairstow, from whatever I've seen of them in international cricket, I think Buttler is the better keeper.

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Post by alfie Wed 23 Jul 2014, 1:46 pm

Squad pretty much as expected. Prior made it easy for everyone by opting to go off and treat his injury problems . And Buttler was the logical choice , especially after being called up as cover last time...It may be earlier than desirable - in the perfect world - but given he is assured of a bit of a honeymoon period anyway in the light of Prior's recent decline he has a chance to feel his way into the side. He has natural talent with the bat : although his best efforts have come in the short forms of the game he isn't just a happy slogger ; I have hopes he might actually adapt to Test Match batting quite well. We shall see.
His keeping still needs work ; but as Olly says so did Prior's when he was first selected.
Kerrigan probably wasn't going to play anyway : unless he has a county match to play (has he ?) I suppose there is no reason why he couldn't still practice with the team anyway ...did not Finn do so the other day ? And someone else earlier this summer I think...don't think he is being discarded. Maybe he is a better chance at Old Trafford.
As for the pacers we will have to see who is fit and who they think fits the conditions best. I am not going to try and outguess them from 12000 miles away  Smile 

Echoing Mike's call above for a bit of patience. Believe it or not , they aren't that far away. The last match , in which they fought their way into good positions several times , only to fall away again - most spectacularly at the end ! - reminded me in some ways of Australia's performance a year ago in Durham. Which turned out to be the last match they lost...

Hoping for a good comeback  Fingers Crossed 

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Post by SimonofSurrey Wed 23 Jul 2014, 1:53 pm

And the way things are going, Buttler may find that he has to play only his first Test match under a captain who stated publicly earlier this year that Buttler 'wasn't ready for Test cricket'. In other words, his second Test, and England's fourth of this series, may well see a change of captain.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 2:03 pm

Australia during their troubled times, still were a major force at home. Even India, while they were going nowhere in overseas tests, could hold their own at home. The moment that was upset by England, there were major changes. Out went Gambhir, Sehwag, Zaheer and Harbhajan, besides Dravid and VVS who were already gone.
Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay were brought in, Bhuvi, Jadeja, Rahane and Shami as well as Rohit Sharma came in besides Kohli and Pujara. So there were indeed drastic changes. England on the other hand did away with one of their best batsmen for non-cricket reasons, (or may be non-reasons)), and has gone easy on non-performing seniors. The players who are gone, Pietersen, Swann and Trott were the performing ones, and the new players who have come in have put up acceptable performances. It is the seniors, Cook, Bell, Prior, Broad, and to a lesser extent Anderson who are letting the side down consistently.
India went soft on their seniors for long and reached a point of no return before tough calls were eventually made. Will England learn?

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Post by alfie Wed 23 Jul 2014, 2:41 pm

Drawing a long bow there , msp. India was gradually overhauling it's team over a year or two , they didn't all change overnight - nor should they have.
Having lost three serious players - none of whom were exactly performing strongly at the end , by the way ; though Swann's decline came a bit suddenly - you surely don't suggest they should have got rid of the rest of their experienced group ?
Prior is gone too now , not unexpectedly. And while it is true Broad is struggling in this series , he was England's best bowler in Australia. Anderson wasn't at his best in the last match but he remains clearly England's best bowler.
Cook and Bell need runs , and soon. Nobody has a place for life.
But selecting a team is a balancing act ; and just chucking out everyone over 25 if they have a few down matches is a recipe for a long time in the wilderness. Once some of these new players are bedded in , the established veterans will have a bit more immediate pressure on them.
And for how much longer are you going to bring Pietersen into every discussion on team England ? Just asking...

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Post by Scrumpy Wed 23 Jul 2014, 3:10 pm

Media scrutiny played a major part in wicketkeeper Matt Prior's decision to stand down from England duty for the rest of the summer, according to Sussex manager Mark Robinson.

Mark Robinson
"The media have hunted him mercilessly and made his position and Alastair Cook's job difficult for any player," Robinson told BBC Radio Sussex.

"With Matt carrying injuries it probably got a bit too much and he has done the right thing to pull himself out.

"Everybody scrutinises every move he does, it almost makes it impossible for him to do his job, as it is for the England captain. Every move they make is under enormous pressure."



Umm maybe he should take his catches and stop playing stupid shots and the media/fans wouldn't have any need to moan about him!

Really if he is that weak that England are better off without him.

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Post by Stella Wed 23 Jul 2014, 3:52 pm

Prior hasn't complained has he?

The squad was as expected. Woakes for Broad or Stokes.
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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 3:55 pm

alfie wrote:Drawing a long bow there , msp.  India was gradually overhauling it's team over a year or two , they didn't all change overnight - nor should they have.
Having lost three serious players - none of whom were exactly performing strongly at the end , by the way ; though Swann's decline came a bit suddenly - you surely don't suggest they should have got rid of the rest of their experienced group ?
Prior is gone too now , not unexpectedly. And while it is true Broad is struggling in this series , he was England's best bowler in Australia. Anderson wasn't at his best in the last match but he remains clearly England's best bowler.
Cook and Bell need runs , and soon.  Nobody has a place for life.
But selecting a team is a balancing act ; and just chucking out everyone over 25 if they have a few down matches is a recipe for a long time in the wilderness. Once some of these new players are bedded in , the established veterans will have a bit more immediate pressure on them.
And for how much longer are you going to bring Pietersen into every discussion on team England ? Just asking...
Alfie, to get it out of the way, I would respond to your last comment first.
The decision to get rid of Kevin Pietersen was a risky one to say the least. There is a serious sense of wrong that many people have felt with the decision as such for many, the way it was taken for many others.
You've seen The shot with which Prior got out and the comments that Cook made following the game? Contrast that with the hideous attempt at public humiliation of Pietersen by Bigmouth downton? So long as such perceived doublestandards are there, so long as England are not performing, the specter of KP will haunt Cook and England. I wish Pietersen returns to FC cricket and scores some runs. But it seems he has resigned himself to the reality that he's unwanted.......
Now on to the other points. India had introduced Kohli to test cricket in 2011 on the force of his ODI performances besides a fine FC record, but he established himself in the side only in Australia. Pujara too found a first choice place in the side in the NZ series before the loss to England. India were certainly looking at a gradual rebuild as you said, but the England series changed all that. Some real tough calls were made during that series, and after the Australia series of 2013, the only senior player who remained in the side due to past record was Tendulkar. Even when Zaheer returned in South Africa later, it was after he really earned a recall to the side.
The loss in the winter Ashes was bad enough for England, but the home loss to Sri Lanka was worse. And as Prior was anyways not fit enough, it was the right time to send a message to the likes of Bell. Yes Bell had a fabulous summer Ashes, but he was too inconsistent in the 2 years prior to that, and has continued on the same way since. So may be a tough call was required.
If Stuart Broad isn't there 100 % with his fitness levels, a Zaheer like call has to be taken sooner rather than later, he's young enough to come back and England really need him to do so, but to give the message that anything goes is absolutely the wrong one particularly when results aren't going your way.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 3:59 pm

Just to understand the range of transformation that Indian side has undergone. The top 6 that took the field for India in the Lord's test has a combined 26 test hundreds. Alastair Cook alone has 25!.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 4:03 pm

You have been out of form for a year and was dropped due to poor form. Then you never really proved your fitness. You play while carrying an injury. Your performances have been poor. Yet the media shouldn't say anything?
Wonderful!!.

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Post by Stella Wed 23 Jul 2014, 4:05 pm

msp83 wrote:You have been out of form for a year and was dropped due to poor form. Then you never really proved your fitness. You play while carrying an injury. Your performances have been poor. Yet the media shouldn't say anything?
Wonderful!!.

Prior being picked wasn't his fault. And has Prior complained about the media?
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Post by Scrumpy Wed 23 Jul 2014, 4:13 pm

No, he has chosen to hide behind an injury to save face.
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Post by Stella Wed 23 Jul 2014, 4:15 pm

Scrumpy wrote:No, he has chosen to hide behind an injury to save face.

The only think Prior has done wrong is play badly. He hasn't whined, well from what I know.
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Post by Mike Selig Wed 23 Jul 2014, 4:55 pm

Some people like to rewrite history I know, but to say Pietersen and Swann were performing is a tad ridiculous. Pietersen yes we know wasn't playing any worse than most of the other batsmen, but that is not the same as "performing". Swann as we now know lost his rip and was bowling dreadfully in Australia. Trott's problems have been well documented and to continue to use him as a stick to beat the management with is a low-blow.

I can't believe anybody sensible can think that England dropping all their experienced players in one go would seriously have made things better.

Cook is still England's best opener. They are struggling enough to find an opening partner for him (Robson has done reasonably so far).
Bell is England's best middle-order batsman (Root may well soon surpass him for that title). Taylor, Morgan etc. are not better players.
Anderson and Broad are still England's best bowlers, and if anything the first innings at Lords and most of the Sri Lanka series emphasised just how true that remains.

I agree with alfie that England desperately need the old guard to start performing.

Pietersen is not going to be picked. I don't blame him for jetting around the world earning big bucks for playing some T20 cricket of dubious quality - England have made it perfectly clear that they're not interested in him anymore, so he may as well do as he pleases. Of course his constant digs on social media at anybody who doesn't believe him to the Messiah continue to betray his odious character, but that's his look-out. The fact remains England are done with him, and him with England. It is therefore pointless to bring him up in every single discussion.

Comments on Prior "hiding behind injury" are also out of place. To anybody with an ounce of brain power it was obvious that in the last test he was desperately struggling to move to his right. Mark Robinson has a point, but forgets (as us coaches sometimes do) that the media does not have a duty to help the England team perform. They are entitled to question people's performances, particularly as Prior being picked again was always going to be one of those questionable calls.

I am not even especially an England fan. I just find the expectation which fans and media have of a team in a rebuilding phase (which we all agreed was needed) to be completely unrealistic.

England are playing like almost all young sides lacking in confidence and on a losing streak do (I know this, it has happened to sides I coach): they are playing a lot of decent cricket, and some awful cricket which is undoing a lot of the decent work. We saw a perfect example last summer with the Australians. India went through a similar passage in South Africa, and indeed have done some similar stuff whilst over here. The way out of it is for a few of your players (usually senior members) to grab the game during those tough periods, and drag the team through them. The most likely England guys to do this I suggest are Cook (this may sound ridiculous, but I don't think he was a million miles away from a match-winning knock in the 4th innings at Lords - he certainly seemed to have that hunger back in his eyes), Root, Broad and Anderson.

This "rebuilding phase" has lasted all of 4 matches. In all of these England got themselves into decent/winning positions.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 5:04 pm

Until he was dropped during the England series, Zaheer was India's best seamer, Sehwag and Gambhir the best openers, and Harbhajan one of the better spinners. Bhuvneshwar Kumar wasn't good enough for international cricket, Shami was too inexperienced, Dhawan didn't have the temperament to play at the top level and had too many technical issues, Murali Vijay would struggle on away pitches and Ravindra Jadeja wasn't test class.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 5:14 pm

As for the Pietersen, no deliberate distortions can really make it. The point is whether England were done with KP and KP with England, the point is about the merits of that decision. Even the ECB chief wouldn't suggest that the merits of the decision is arguable and debatable. There are a lot of people, for valid reasons, believe that it was a wrong decision. We don't yet know the reasons for KP's axing, not as yet. The ECB can of course choose to never give any reasons and their fanclub can find justifications for the same, but to expect everyone to just take it as such and not hold a counter opinion and express the same? Not going to happen.
In due course of time it will go away, and good performances from England help the process go faster.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 5:17 pm

'Odious character'?
What about St. Downton?

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 5:26 pm

Its not just common cricket lovers like me who would mention KP in certain contexts, even experienced cricket writers like George Dobell and Mark Nicholas do that. What I have seen from the No-mention camp usually is to ignore the contents of such writeings, or say George is a so and so.......

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Post by Mike Selig Wed 23 Jul 2014, 6:54 pm

I have said previously that I don't wish to discuss Pietersen further. Perhaps I was wrong to even answer the point. Whatever the rights and wrongs of everybody involved (which I won't go into) he isn't playing, and quite probably won't ever again. I therefore simply don't see the point in bringing him up all the time. This applies equally to journalists.

There is no more constructive debate to be had on the matter either: the narrative has become polarised to the same extent that the Israel/Palestine debate has (note: I am NOT comparing the two situations, I am comparing the debate around them). Both sides's supporters believe they are 100% right and their opponents 100% wrong, they are never going to change their mind, so will twist any subsequent facts to suit their narrative, and those of us who suggest there are faults on both sides get castigated by all and drowned out in the shouting.

There is just no point in discussing the matter further.

The only thing I would say is that just because I described Pietersen as an odious character (this view is pretty much accepted BTW) doesn't mean I automatically think Downton is a saint, or am part of an ECB fan club. I have been critical of the ECB in the past and will be so again in the future no doubt.

Back to the squad...

I disagree with the comparison with the Indian situation. When he was dropped it was clear to plenty of people (including myself) that Zaheer was a spent force, and that India (unusually maybe) had plenty of young seamers who were worth a look at. Shewag ditto, although I will admit to doubts about Vijay (I would have stuck with Gambhir). Similarly Harbajhan it was fairly obvious and India had plenty of suitable alternatives. You know I've long been a fan of Jadeja.

For England I just don't see this.
It is well known that finding a partner for Cook has been a problem in itself (Robson being the 4th attempt). When finding one opener is such a problem I don't see what's achieved by pushing on and trying to find a second one as well. If people really think Nick Compton or Michael Carberry are better players than Cook then I don't really know what to say.

Bell there can be more debate over. There are some credible alternatives, in particular Taylor or Morgan (Morgan is benefiting from that curious well-known case of improving whilst not playing - it is not so long ago people were saying he shouldn't be playing one-day cricket anymore). It is my considered opinion that at the moment Bell is better than either, although he seems to be struggling to get forward, and as a result he is almost walking at the bowler and pushing out in front of him.

There are no real credible alternatives to Broad and Anderson. They have still largely been England's best bowlers in recent times, even whilst struggling. When Jordan played Broad still looked the better bowler. When Onions last played he took 2-120odd IIRC. Plunkett has been hit and miss. Woakes is a holding seamer, not a new ball bowler. Who are the other options? The names will be Finn (still needs time to get really confident in his action), Mills (those calling for him to play cannot have seen much of him), etc. I guess soon people will be clamouring for Bresnan to return. Maybe even Rankin?

I've made the point before, but it is still valid. It is not just a case of saying so and so should be dropped (let's be honest, you could make a case for dropping pretty much every England player apart from Root and Ballance). You also need to say who you will pick instead. If who you are picking is not better (or almost as good but significantly younger and with bigger potential) then it is a bit pointless really.

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Post by msp83 Wed 23 Jul 2014, 7:20 pm

Ravindra Jadeja's selection in the test squad was laughed at by many, and was one of the selections for which skipper MS Dhoni received a lot of criticism before Jadeja proved his worth with the ball against the Australians. Like you, I too have been an original supporter of Jadeja's selection, but there were, very, very few of us on that boat. Even on Zaheer, Sehwag and Gambhir, there were not many who thought they weren't performing, but the argument remained that they were the best available options.. Gambhir even went public saying he and Sehwag were the best available openers for the side a couple of tests before he was axed!. When Zaheer was axed, Praveen Kumar was injured, and the other available seamers like Ishant were not performing much. Varun Aaron was also on the injured list, and not many really thought too much of Bhuvneshwar Kumar before that Pakistan T-20I. Looking back these picks might seem perfectly logical, but at the time of selection, it needed a lot of courage from the selectors and team management to take the call they did, and the process was put on a fast pace very much due to the home loss against England.
I never said England should have dropped everyone of their senior players. But the likes of Ian Bell and Matt Prior should have been. Prior should never have been picked at the start of the summer without proving form, or most importantly fitness, and most certainly shouldn't have been allowed to play with an injury in the last game.
Now for Bell, He had one fabulous series in 2013, but he has been very inconsistent leading up to that series, and hasn't done anything since then. So that summer series was the exception rather than the rule as far as the last 3 years are concerned. I don't think anyone can really make a case that he hasn't been given enough time to get back to the top of his game.
The other thing to note is that the likes of Prior and Bell could have been carried by the side had the results weren't going so much against the side. Dropping them wouldn't mean a certain end of career. Even Zaheer, at 35, went to france, did extensive work on his fitness, proved his form in domestic cricket and came back to the side when it was thought that his career was over. Sometimes, you need a kick up the back to rediscover that hunger to keep your motivation levels on top. And the likes of Stuart Broad, by playing him in a half-fit stage, they are doing more damage than any good to the side and the player himself.

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Post by Mike Selig Wed 23 Jul 2014, 8:24 pm

Actually there is a further crucial difference between the England and India situation.

A big part of India's problems (and crucial factor in the Australian and English whitewashes) IMO was that their outlook on the game remained stuck in the 90s - poor fitness levels, poor fielders, poor outcricket generally and not the best work ethic. Shewag, Zaheer and Harbajhan were very good illustrations of this.

Now whatever accusations you can send the way of Cook, Bell et al. poor fitness levels, fielding or work ethic are not amongst them.

It is much to the Indian management's credit (Fletcher deserves a bit of credit for this, as do his predecessors) that they have dragged India into the modern age and the guys now coming into the side are not only good batsmen/bowlers, but good cricketers.

We may have to agree to disagree on Bell and Prior.

I take the point that Bell has been patchy for a while, but I'd be interested in his overall average over that period of time nonetheless. I still think he is a better player than anybody who might replace him, and crucially I do think England need his experience right now.

As for Prior, I think he was picked for sound reasons, with sound reservations no doubt. He had scored a few runs before, and I believe was fit in the Sri Lanka series (the fitness issue seems to be he did his quad in training and never allowed it to heal - that was undoubtedly a mistake, but players are very good at hiding the extent of injuries you know...). It's the call I personally would have made at that time as well, if faced with the choice (and if I was convinced he was fit enough).

And in all honesty? His performances this summer haven't been dreadful. Below par, yes, but in the SL series he made a good fifty, 27 not out and a useful hand in trying to save the match at Headingley. Against India he got one terrible decision, made another decent contribution and then played a couple of bad shots. Let's not pretend he's made 3 ducks in a row or something... His keeping has been at times below par but he was good at Trent Bridge (that Dhoni miss was very very tough) and clearly not 100% at Lords (yes, he shouldn't have played, but that is separate to form and fitness issues coming into the summer).

In hindsight the decision looks silly. At the time? defendable at least.

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Post by ChequeredJersey Wed 23 Jul 2014, 10:55 pm

Broad looks injured which is why I'd rest him. Otherwise he has the beautiful ability to suddenly click and go from looking hard working but failing to utterly unplayable. Confidence bowlers getting their confidence can turn a series
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Post by kingraf Wed 23 Jul 2014, 11:46 pm

The funny thing about KP mentions... is that six months later, he hasn't played one first class match. And yet he and his supporters continue this crusade. He isn't scoring runs at t20 either, but it's fine, because he's KP, and deserves another shot, yeah?

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Post by king_carlos Thu 24 Jul 2014, 5:58 am

kingraf wrote:The funny thing about KP mentions... is that six months later, he hasn't played one first class match. And yet he and his supporters continue this crusade. He isn't scoring runs at t20 either, but it's fine, because he's KP, and deserves another shot, yeah?

It's a simple truth that everybody is ignoring on the issue, not least journalists fearful of losing a very lazy story to write about, that KP's body wasn't going to be up to test cricket much longer anyway.

With most recently knee and finger problems he had looked like a guy nursing himself through the last couple of years. Heck since his dropping he has struggled to stay fit for the handful of T20 games he's been contracted to play! For all his other pros and cons it would have been a miracle to see him last in test cricket much longer playing at the standard he was once capable.

On a similar note senior players nursing themselves through series is turning into an increasing worry. As said KP looked like a guy struggling for a while, Swann was certainly no longer fit for tests after surgery and now Prior has been rushed back too early. That's not too mention Broad continually having 'issues', bowling well below his best and quickest for sustained periods.

One of my big worries (albeit less prevalent than many others!) with the current side is that the lack of a front line spinner is seeing Anderson bowled into the ground. It's something that is becoming a recurring theme over the summer and desperately cannot afford to wreck Anderson whilst trying to build a new side.

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Post by KP_fan Thu 24 Jul 2014, 10:57 am

yeah.....class is permanent and form temporary....applies only to Cook so he should be given an extended run.....it's a matter of time before he will come good

but the same standard do not apply to KP

even when lacking fitness and form Prior plays... because he has been a great performer, one of the best keepers we have had, best in the country still ....

KP England's best batsman since Boycott in combining volumes of runs and average.......and better than Boycott in stroke-play and game changing ability....ain't even accorded the same standard when in better fitness than the walking broken and torn Prior.
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Post by Stella Thu 24 Jul 2014, 10:59 am

Pietersen wasn't dropped for poor form alone though was he.
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Post by ChequeredJersey Thu 24 Jul 2014, 11:01 am

Stella wrote:Pietersen wasn't dropped for poor form alone though was he.

Maybe the management and other senior players needed a bit of being challenged...
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Post by KP_fan Thu 24 Jul 2014, 11:02 am

Stella wrote:Pietersen wasn't dropped for poor form alone though was he.

the argument against KP playing here in the last few posts is being made on form an fitness only  Shocked 
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Post by GSC Thu 24 Jul 2014, 11:03 am

Said it before, can we just have an official KP thread. Gets tiresome when every thread on this forum relating to England devolves into the same arguments for and against KP.
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