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Post by guildfordbat Sun 13 Apr - 16:49

First topic message reminder :

Smith was back in this country today - and at Anfield to watch Liverpool beat Man City! That's nice for him. Now, I'm not suggesting he should spend his days off picking up litter in the Lock Stand at the Oval but it is important he starts to deliver for the club paying handsomely for his services.

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Tue 16 Feb - 21:59

I see the report that he has retired in order to take up a role with the KP Foundation. Balcombe never made a first class appearance for Surrey.

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Post by king_carlos Wed 17 Feb - 15:25

I'd seen that bit about him joining the KP foundation as well Corporal. It's good to see the club, or its associates, helping players in finding roles for after finishing playing.

I'm not privy in any way to what went on with Balcombe during his time with Surrey. Given that in his few second XI outings he was delivering multiple wides and no balls an over it would suggest a bloke who may have been struggling with ordeals outside the game the were impacting on his performance.

If that were the case then I can only wish him the best in his exploits outside the game and hope he does well in whatever he chooses to focus on.

Top wicket taker in div 2 and his career stats show he was a fine county pro when in form and one who many around the Oval thought was a very shrewd acquisition when he signed.

Cheers to him for a decade in the county circuit and all the best for the future! clap

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 19 Feb - 13:53

In today's Surrey Ad, Spills states his understanding that two signings are ''imminent''. No names but the implication is that they're both bowlers given the focus of his article is on Balcombe and other seamers who have retired since last season.

My own view is that the cupboard is still pretty well stocked with bowlers and that one more now would be enough. However, that doesn't seem to be the approach being taken.

Balcombe is referred to in his ''sporadic'' second eleven games last year as ''appearing to suffer from a chronic lack of confidence''.

Meanwhile, Burns and Foakes have been named in the MCC side to play Yorks in the overseas opening season match. That suggest they are both on the selectors' radar.

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Post by king_carlos Fri 19 Feb - 17:56

I can't think of any bowlers who are out of contract so perhaps we are looking at Kolpak or former academy players who might have caught the eye.

I agree that Curran x 2, Footit, Dernbach, Dunn, Meaker and Burke is strong enough to only really need one more addition for depth. Especially when we have Bravo and Azhar during the t20 stuff.

Then again all of Footit, Meaker and Dunn have had injury issues and Pitt the even younger still will be unavailable during exams so perhaps there's good reason behind it.

I believe Kumar is in the MCC squad for the Emirates t20 part as well. There are some talented youngster and experienced quality in that MCC squad so hopefully 'Third Degree' and 'That's All' can learn a thing or two and show off what they are capable of!

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Post by jimbobgooner Mon 22 Feb - 2:26

rumors on twitter that surrey will be signing the south african Chris Morris for the month of july only Erm

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Mon 22 Feb - 8:03

Hi Jimbob - good to hear from you!

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 22 Feb - 9:31

Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Hi Jimbob - good to hear from you!

+ 1. thumbsup

Not doubting JimBob's twitter sources for a moment but I find the whole matter of signings and availabilities very difficult to keep up with. Contracts only seem to be enforceable when a player is crocked and we have to shell out a load of dosh (how is Graeme Smith? What's he doing these days?)!!

As I understand it, you can play 2 overseas players in the t20 and 1 in the other competitions. Aren't we already covered with Bravo and Sanga / Finch? Or is one of those now off somewhere?

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 22 Feb - 9:40

Meanwhile, suggestions on the wallpaper site that Australian batting coach Michael Di Venuto is lined up to take the role of head coach at Surrey.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 22 Feb - 10:17

And that suggestion proves to be correct - Di Venuto confirmed.

Knows the county game, has international coaching experience - promising appointment
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 22 Feb - 12:27

Initial thoughts?

Mine - he'll be excellent for Jason Roy (as he has been for Steve smith and David Warner - players with similar mentalities but technical issues Di Venuto helped iron out), also the likes of Sibley should benefit from his experience, he knows the county game well, and is a coach on the up

Stewart in his interview also said cricket Australia had just offered him a new deal so obviously he is well thought of in the higher ranks of the game

Concern is that he's never been a head coach before, but as with my own football team I'd always rather go for a young up and comer than a re-tread

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Post by king_carlos Mon 22 Feb - 12:54

guildfordbat wrote:
Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Hi Jimbob - good to hear from you!

+ 1. thumbsup

Not doubting JimBob's twitter sources for a moment but I find the whole matter of signings and availabilities very difficult to keep up with. Contracts only seem to be enforceable when a player is crocked and we have to shell out a load of dosh (how is Graeme Smith? What's he doing these days?)!!

As I understand it, you can play 2 overseas players in the t20 and 1 in the other competitions. Aren't we already covered with Bravo and Sanga / Finch? Or is one of those now off somewhere?

Another +1 to seeing you back Jimbob. With the sun out up here it almost feels like summer suddenly! Hug  cider

Most t20 contracts run for a certain number of games in the tournament these days whilst guys jet off to more lucrative sides. Bravo may well only be around for a certain number of games and Morris may be lined up as his replacement during that period.

My thoughts on Morris would be:

Pros - He contributes with bat and ball, has good experience and plays all three formats.
Cons - I don't honestly think he's that good!

Hopefully he proves me wrong on the later. Given it just states he has signed for the 'month of July' it seems he might be covering for Finch at some point as well, hence available for CC games. If this is the case then I'd have much preferred yet another batsmen if the coaches are that keen to get someone in.

I do have to question sometimes whether the constant coming and going of overseas players is more destabilising to a squad than anything else though. It must be very frustrating for guys who have been through the graft of pre-season, know the side and how they play and are performing solidly then suddenly get dropped for a guy who turns up for 4 weeks.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 22 Feb - 13:04

On Di Venuto:

I think it's a good appointment. Losing a coach such as Ford who is working well with the players would always be hard to replace. In Di Venuto they've found someone who knows the county game very well, has fresh experience of coaching so shouldn't be attached to out dated systems and is clearly well considered from his brief time in these roles.

He hasn't been a head coach before as Olly says which isn't ideal. However Stewie is a very hands on Director of Cricket (I believe that's his title?) who can give him a guiding hand.

One question I would have is whether Di Venuto will create a surplus of batting coaches with Thorpe also around? Given Thrope seemed to be in the running for head coach if Stewie promoted from within it would seem that Di Venuto has taken the exact role he may have been eyeing.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 22 Feb - 13:05

king_carlos wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:
Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Hi Jimbob - good to hear from you!

+ 1. thumbsup

Not doubting JimBob's twitter sources for a moment but I find the whole matter of signings and availabilities very difficult to keep up with. Contracts only seem to be enforceable when a player is crocked and we have to shell out a load of dosh (how is Graeme Smith? What's he doing these days?)!!

As I understand it, you can play 2 overseas players in the t20 and 1 in the other competitions. Aren't we already covered with Bravo and Sanga / Finch? Or is one of those now off somewhere?

Another +1 to seeing you back Jimbob. With the sun out up here it almost feels like summer suddenly! Hug  cider

Most t20 contracts run for a certain number of games in the tournament these days whilst guys jet off to more lucrative sides. Bravo may well only be around for a certain number of games and Morris may be lined up as his replacement during that period.

My thoughts on Morris would be:

Pros - He contributes with bat and ball, has good experience and plays all three formats.
Cons - I don't honestly think he's that good!

Hopefully he proves me wrong on the later. Given it just states he has signed for the 'month of July' it seems he might be covering for Finch at some point as well, hence available for CC games. If this is the case then I'd have much preferred yet another batsmen if the coaches are that keen to get someone in.

I do have to question sometimes whether the constant coming and going of overseas players is more destabilising to a squad than anything else though. It must be very frustrating for guys who have been through the graft of pre-season, know the side and how they play and are performing solidly then suddenly get dropped for a guy who turns up for 4 weeks.

Re: your final point Carlos I'd argue that if they're being dropped they deserve it...if you don't want to be at risk, take the decision out of the coaches hands by playing well...

But agree with your summation of Morris - was distinctly unimpressed with his bowling on the international stage (although he could have the pace to trouble county bats - he did regularly hit 140+kph)
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Post by king_carlos Mon 22 Feb - 13:34

If guys deserve to be dropped then I agree Olly. Sometimes it feels like players don't however. On top of this even if the incumbent is playing poorly enough to be dropped then often I feel that counties would gain more by giving the chance to a younger squad member who has earnt a chance in 2nd XI cricket.

Some overseas players come in for a month or two and can turn a sides season - Ojha a couple of seasons ago for instance. More often than not guys who are only around for a few games don't seem to contribute much to the season whilst taking opportunities away from younger players.

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 22 Feb - 13:55

Olly wrote:Initial thoughts?

Mine - he'll be excellent for Jason Roy (as he has been for Steve smith and David Warner - players with similar mentalities but technical issues Di Venuto helped iron out), also the likes of Sibley should benefit from his experience, he knows the county game well, and is a coach on the up

Stewart in his interview also said cricket Australia had just offered him a new deal so obviously he is well thought of in the higher ranks of the game

Concern is that he's never been a head coach before, but as with my own football team I'd always rather go for a young up and comer than a re-tread


And Norwich are doing fine, aren't they? Wink Solly, Orry! Very Happy

Just a bad joke there. I actually go along with the supportive comments here about the appointment.

A couple of points -

* We're by no means the finished article but we're in a much better state than when Ford arrived. Di Venuto will more need to tighten nuts and bolts and top up the oil rather than rebuild a brand new machine. Feel Stewart's guidance and role in the early weeks will be important here.

* Hope his contract is tightly worded and doesn't permit him to swan off to Australia if they come calling after some early success.

As for Morris - mentioned this on one of the main threads, he seems a hard working and determined player which I always like. Unfortunately, as Carlos suggests, he doesn't seem that good - at least not as regards his day job of bowling.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 22 Feb - 14:54

Guildford I'll have you know we're comfortably above the bottom three and swimming through the season without a hitch.... Run Laugh

Good point re: contract. With Lehmann's recent health issues, a change might not be far off in the Australia camp. Although Langer is the front runner at the moment, a strong season or two could easily see Di Venuto usurp him
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 22 Feb - 15:07

Rory Burns another who should gain greatly under Di Venuto - aka Khawaja for Aus
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Post by LondonTiger Tue 23 Feb - 16:01

I suspect you may be safe to assume Di Venuto will be around for a little while - as you would have thought that if CA are looking at the County championship for a new head coach then they would be speaking to Dizzy first.

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 23 Feb - 16:56

Tiger - yep, understand that and I like Dizzy a lot so taking nothing away from him but it's Di Venuto who has the recent coaching experience with CA and stood in when Lehmann was Uncle Dick. Therefore not sure that Dizzy would automatically be first choice if CA came calling over here. Just have to see what happens if the situation arises.

That's before adding that most Surrey contracts for overseas staff seem to contain a clause giving unlimited foreign shopping trips for spouses whilst allowing them to walk away whenever they feel like it!

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Post by LondonTiger Wed 24 Feb - 8:57

Well, only so much anyone can be expected to take being in Stockwell.

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Post by LondonTiger Wed 24 Feb - 10:17

One of the reasons I feel MDV would not be called up to the full aussie job in the next year or two is his general lack of experience - especially as a head coach. Two seasons as batting coach and stand in for sickness will show some ability - but the experience he will gain at surrey will be essential for his future career aspirations.

One of the reasons Dizzy took the Adelaide strikers job was to broaden his experience.

Previous overseas coaches at the Oval have arrived with a lot more experience than MDV and thus perhaps more likely to being poached quickly.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Fri 26 Feb - 8:34

Morris confirmed for the blast - will cover for Bravo when he is playing in the CPL
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Post by jimbohammers Fri 26 Feb - 12:04

Sanga, Finch, Bravo, Morris - Surrey not messing about...

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Post by guildfordbat Fri 26 Feb - 14:31

Yep, that's right, Jimbo. Plus Azhar Mahmood - classed as a 'home' player these days - signed as t20 player/coach.

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Fri 26 Feb - 14:43

LondonTiger wrote:Well, only so much anyone can be expected to take being in Stockwell.
Laugh Laugh

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Post by jimbobgooner Sun 28 Feb - 22:52

king_carlos wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:
Corporalhumblebucket wrote:Hi Jimbob - good to hear from you!

+ 1. thumbsup

Not doubting JimBob's twitter sources for a moment but I find the whole matter of signings and availabilities very difficult to keep up with. Contracts only seem to be enforceable when a player is crocked and we have to shell out a load of dosh (how is Graeme Smith? What's he doing these days?)!!

As I understand it, you can play 2 overseas players in the t20 and 1 in the other competitions. Aren't we already covered with Bravo and Sanga / Finch? Or is one of those now off somewhere?

Another +1 to seeing you back Jimbob. With the sun out up here it almost feels like summer suddenly! Hug  cider

Most t20 contracts run for a certain number of games in the tournament these days whilst guys jet off to more lucrative sides. Bravo may well only be around for a certain number of games and Morris may be lined up as his replacement during that period.

My thoughts on Morris would be:

Pros - He contributes with bat and ball, has good experience and plays all three formats.
Cons - I don't honestly think he's that good!

Hopefully he proves me wrong on the later. Given it just states he has signed for the 'month of July' it seems he might be covering for Finch at some point as well, hence available for CC games. If this is the case then I'd have much preferred yet another batsmen if the coaches are that keen to get someone in.

I do have to question sometimes whether the constant coming and going of overseas players is more destabilising to a squad than anything else though. It must be very frustrating for guys who have been through the graft of pre-season, know the side and how they play and are performing solidly then suddenly get dropped for a guy who turns up for 4 weeks.
cheers chaps thumbsup glad to say not long left before my groundhog football season ends again Rolling Eyes

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 29 Feb - 15:14

https://www.kiaoval.com/surrey-sign-conor-mckerr/

Interesting signing this - South African U19 bowler, wants to be English. 6ft 6in, 19 year old. Wonder if kingraf knows anything of him...
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 1 Mar - 17:38

https://www.kiaoval.com/surrey-sign-mathew-pillans/

Matthew Phillans signs from the dolphins in south Africa. 24 year old pace man, has taken 119 wickets in 31 first class games at an average of 23.72 which is very very tidy indeed.

Seems Mr Stewart has some strong links in South Africa then!

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Thu 3 Mar - 21:17

The iconic gasholder next to the Oval has been given a Grade II listing. Quite right too!

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 8 Mar - 0:39

I understand Sanga has just been named as a selector for Sri Lanka. Maybe I'm worry gutting unnecessarily but I do wonder if that it will impact his availability for us this season (already reduced by his Caribbean t20 contract).

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Post by guildfordbat Wed 9 Mar - 8:56

For anyone interested, you can tweet questions about the 2017 changes to the game's domestic structure to Surrey Chief Executive, Richard Gould, between 12 noon and 1 pm today which he'll then (try to) answer. Alternatively, you can post questions on the wallpaper site before that time. A commendable initiative.

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 21 Mar - 22:23

Half-centuries today for Burns (51) and Foakes (83*) for the MCC in their match v Yorks in Abu Dhabi. clap clap Should help their confidence (although Burns never seems backward in coming forward) and their stats for the season (it's a first class fixture).

Meanwhile, in colder climes, Surrey play Middlesex in a 3 day friendly at the Oval starting tomorrow. Gary Wilson is not involved - guess he's on leave after his participation with Ireland in the World Cup. With him, Burns, Foakes and Sanga (minor ankle injury, I think, which kept him out of the MCC squad) all missing, it looks like Steve Davies will keep wicket for about the first time in two years. Academy player Bradley Erasmus who also plays for Guildford CC is called into the XI along with new signings Mark Footitt and Matt Pillans. No place though for the other recent recruit teenager Conor McKerr or Aneesh Kapil.

Steve Finn is due to play for Middlesex.

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Mon 21 Mar - 23:53

Doesn't really feel like cricket watching weather in England at the moment!

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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Tue 22 Mar - 17:48

Surrey 250 - 9 dec in friendly against Middlesex. Half centuries for Burke and Batty. Erasumus hit 42.  Bit of a recovery from 142 - 5, so - at a pinch - you could go with the headline *Erasmus inspires Surrey renaissance*. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 22 Mar - 17:56

Not the strongest batting line up I've ever seen today!
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Post by guildfordbat Fri 25 Mar - 10:52

The Club announced last night that West Indies international Ravi Rampaul has joined on a 2 year deal. Suspect the news was pushed through before Spills broke it in today's Surrey Ad.

Not for the first time, Spills gives out more than the Club website. Rampaul's signing is as a Kolpak (still subject to clearance on that basis per Spills although perhaps that has now been obtained) and he will be missing for about a month this season when he goes to play t20 in the Caribbean.

On the face of it, distinctly unimpressed by this recruitment - yet another seamer and an injury plagued one as well who rarely set things alight even when at his best. Too many echoes for me of several of those failed signings by Adams when he dolled out a lot of dosh for experience and got insufficient back in return. I'll happily eat my hat and anyone else's if shown to be wrong but just can't feel good about this one.

Meanwhile, according to Spills (nothing on the website), Vik Solanki has been appointed second team skipper for the season. This appointment was strongly suggested by our Simon of Surrey last summer so clap to him.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Fri 25 Mar - 11:22

I'd imagine Rampaul is merely an experienced backup for the main guys - not the greatest player but he can do a job for a couple of games a season in each format
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Post by SimonofSurrey Sun 27 Mar - 0:21

guildfordbat wrote:The Club announced last night that West Indies international Ravi Rampaul has joined on a 2 year deal. Suspect the news was pushed through before Spills broke it in today's Surrey Ad.

Not for the first time, Spills gives out more than the Club website. Rampaul's signing is as a Kolpak (still subject to clearance on that basis per Spills although perhaps that has now been obtained) and he will be missing for about a month this season when he goes to play t20 in the Caribbean.

On the face of it, distinctly unimpressed by this recruitment - yet another seamer and an injury plagued one as well who rarely set things alight even when at his best. Too many echoes for me of several of those failed signings by Adams when he dolled out a lot of dosh for experience and got insufficient back in return. I'll happily eat my hat and anyone else's if shown to be wrong but just can't feel good about this one.

Meanwhile, according to Spills (nothing on the website), Vik Solanki has been appointed second team skipper for the season. This appointment was strongly suggested by our Simon of Surrey last summer so clap to him.

Shucks Guildford, well remembered! Sadly, my consultancy fee cheque from a grateful SCCC is still in the post (must be the Easter delays Whistle ).

I'm delighted to see this. I can think of no better all round professional to lead by example to bring the best out of our promising youngsters, whilst also helping any 1st team regular who temporarily loses their mojo - it will happen - to get it back soon again. Good luck Vikram, here's to you!

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 29 Mar - 13:06

Stuart Meaker suffered a traumatic groin injury whilst batting in the nets and is out for the foreseeable future after a procedure

God bless his genitals
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Post by king_carlos Tue 29 Mar - 16:24

Such bad news for Meaker. I enquired about him with a friend who is a strength and conditioning coach at Loughborough as I heard Meaker was training there in pre-season - and to be honest I was having thoughts in the back of my head about whether we'd see him back on the pitch at all given build-up of injuries. The friend in question said that he was looking extremely quick (albeit just in indoor net bowling of course) and seemed to finally be hitting his best again in time for the new season.

Hopefully it only puts him out for the first few weeks of the season.

With Dernbach out until the start of the t20 campaign and Zaf expected to at least miss the first championship match the side for that opening game may end up selecting itself.

1.Third Degree
2.The Baron
3.Sanga
4.Interesting
5.Le Roi king
6.That's All
7.Harold (wk)
8.Norah (c)
9.Pitt the younger
10.Dunn/Rampaul
11.Footit

Thought I'd give everyone a quick vocabulary lesson as the season rapidly approaches Wink

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 29 Mar - 17:06

Only 4 bowlers?
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Post by king_carlos Tue 29 Mar - 17:46

Olly - Early season I think so, yes. I reckon that priority will be given to solidifying the batting and getting early points in the table, especially when conditions favour seamers.

If Zaf had been fit then perhaps they would have picked an extra seamer rather than Norah but even then I think that they would have plumped for their skippers experience when starting out in Div 1.

Without Zaf I'd rather that we stuck with 7 batsmen and 4 bowlers rather than risking Burke at 7 which offers the extra seamer but extends the tail. Kapil at 7 is the other option but there's certainly an argument to be made that his bowling doesn't offer enough as a 4th seamer to warrant leaving out the extra batsmen.

Notts at Trent Bridge is a tough reintroduction to Div 1, I'd rather we lengthened the batting line-up and looked to get a foothold in the game and some early points in the table.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 29 Mar - 17:54

Isn't Sam Curran about? He is playing in the warm up game against Sussex today - and in fact took two wickets.

Also interesting to note that Foakes kept wicket, with both him and Wilson on the field
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Post by king_carlos Tue 29 Mar - 18:26

I was under the impression that Pitt the even younger still wouldn't be available until after his A-levels were finished. Perhaps he will be involved before they actually start but then be absent for the duration of them?

That is interesting to see Foakes get the gloves. I'd been hoping he'd get them more consistently this season as I think he has the athleticism to develop into a better keeper than Harold.

It sounds like most the batsmen played fairly fluently which is great to hear. Nice to hear Sibley getting a few under his belt as well. Last season must have been tough for him after bursting onto the scene in such eye catching fashion. Hopefully he gets the chance to get a few more CC runs under his belt this season and solidify his place at this level.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 29 Mar - 18:45

The Baron also got off the mark with a six! A hero amongst men
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Post by guildfordbat Tue 29 Mar - 21:00

Particular difficulties in our naming an XI is distinguishing between who we would choose and who we think will actually be chosen plus not knowing for sure exactly who will be available from the start.

Sam Curran (Babe Pitt) definitely comes into the last category. Cricket or school? Does anyone know yet? Also, I don't believe Rampaul is here yet. If Rampaul doesn't play in the Loughborough match starting on Thursday, doubt he'll be in contention for the CC opener at Trent Bridge. Sanga should be at the Oval soon and fit to play ... no reason to disagree ... but I'll still breathe more easily when I actually see it! Wink

On Carlos' team, I understand the reasoning for ''solidifying the batting'' and might have settled for 4 bowlers if they were all seamers. However, I don't feel 3 seamers plus spin from Batty will be sufficient for an early April encounter. If Notts bat first and reach 100/0 at lunch on day one, we would then appear to be compelled to over-use Batty and juggle overs from the others and in all likelihood be massively under the cosh for the rest of the game.

Given Batty will play whatever I say, my inclination would be to give the gloves to That's All, leave out Harold and bring in a bowler - ideally Babe. I wouldn't be too worried about the batting; as long as Batty comes in no earlier than 8, we should be ok and either Curran could bat at 7.

The Loughborough game could still influence decisions. Assuming they play in that, strong performances from Sibley and Pillans could still see them both also in contention. Tricky but interesting for us.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Wed 30 Mar - 13:20

I see from the Surrey Twitter feed that Sangakkara and Rampaul were both at nets today
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Post by guildfordbat Wed 30 Mar - 13:25

You just beat me to it, Olly! That's very welcome news, especially concerning Sanga. Btw, hope you don't have a test at the end of your course! Wink

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Wed 30 Mar - 15:33

I do! Whether I pass it or not, well that's up for debate Wink

Multiple choice so I can at least guess!!
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Post by guildfordbat Wed 30 Mar - 16:37

Sure you'll be fine, Olly - go well, my friend!

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