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England's Summer of Cricket 2021

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Post by Duty281 Thu 02 Sep 2021, 12:11 pm

First topic message reminder :

That's the important wicket. Deserved for Robinson and England.

Now into that brittle middle order.

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Post by Soul Requiem Tue 21 Sep 2021, 11:11 am

ECB wrote:"The mental and physical well-being of our players and support staff remains our highest priority and this is even more critical given the times we are currently living in. We know there are increasing concerns about travelling to the region and believe that going ahead will add further pressure to a playing group who have already coped with a long period of operating in restricted Covid environments.

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Post by GSC Tue 21 Sep 2021, 11:31 am

Tend to agree with the criticism of the ECB. If it's a 4 day tour to play a few T20s surely they could've put a squad together even if the big names are rested. Can't have it both ways
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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 11:32 am

AlciG wrote:I searched but couldn't find if I'm allowed to link to other sites, so please delete this post if I'm not.

Apparently what is good for the goose is not good for the gander

It's a very good article as usual from Dobell with a lot of prudent examples of the ECBs double standards.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 21 Sep 2021, 4:00 pm

king_carlos wrote:
AlciG wrote:I searched but couldn't find if I'm allowed to link to other sites, so please delete this post if I'm not.

Apparently what is good for the goose is not good for the gander

It's a very good article as usual from Dobell with a lot of prudent examples of the ECBs double standards.

Agree - he is going to be a massive massive loss to Cricinfo when he leaves in the next month or so.

I would hope these recent events, albeit while not induced in the correct way with Covid/terror threat, will lead to a review of the international calendar, and more of the ECB/BCCI/ACB willing to tour countries more often beyond playing each other. This is what I hope...I suspect we may be in the early stages of some of the "middle" test nations being shunted from the top table...

I saw a stat the other day that the last time Australia played a test match abroad was in October 2019. I appreciate there has been a worldwide pandemic on, but if one of your major top 3 essentially hasn't played a test abroad for two years...and now you have ECB/BCCI pulling out of things abroad too, I think we might be nearing a tipping point one way or another
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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 4:41 pm

Well said, Olly.

It's sadly been drifting that way since Giles Clarke, N. Srinivasan and Wally Edwards were the architects of the ECB, BCCI and CA carving up governance of the international game to prioritising their own finances before all other Test nations, let alone associates hoping to one day push onto being a Test member.

Given that BBCs top cricket commentators such as Agnew and Vaughan were quick to (fairly in my opinion) point out that the IPL clearly had a factor in 5th Test being cancelled I hope they are equally quick to condemn the ECBs lack of support for other Test playing nations outside of the big three after this latest cancellation.

Overall I enjoy TMS coverage a lot and I really like Agnew as a commentator and writer on cricket but one area that really grates is his refusal to comment on the ECBs part in the big three taking over the governance of cricket and the negative impact that has had on so many Test nations. He frequently talks about how he feels he has to "bat for Test cricket" and "defend Test cricket" yet he only ever seems to feel it needs defending from T20, the IPL, the Hundred, etc. To me the much bigger existential threat to Test cricket is coming from Test crickets abysmal governance, which is run almost exclusively these days by the ECB, BCCI and CA. Agnew as the BBCs leading cricket correspondent is in the prime position to write about this, inform more people of that situation and put pressure on the ECB to do better. Yet he doesn't. As much as I like Aggers as a commentator, that makes me quite sad.

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Post by msp83 Tue 21 Sep 2021, 4:50 pm

king_carlos wrote:Well said, Olly.

It's sadly been drifting that way since Giles Clarke, N. Srinivasan and Wally Edwards were the architects of the ECB, BCCI and CA carving up governance of the international game to prioritising their own finances before all other Test nations, let alone associates hoping to one day push onto being a Test member.

Given that BBCs top cricket commentators such as Agnew and Vaughan were quick to (fairly in my opinion) point out that the IPL clearly had a factor in 5th Test being cancelled I hope they are equally quick to condemn the ECBs lack of support for other Test playing nations outside of the big three after this latest cancellation.

Overall I enjoy TMS coverage a lot and I really like Agnew as a commentator and writer on cricket but one area that really grates is his refusal to comment on the ECBs part in the big three taking over the governance of cricket and the negative impact that has had on so many Test nations. He frequently talks about how he feels he has to "bat for Test cricket" and "defend Test cricket" yet he only ever seems to feel it needs defending from T20, the IPL, the Hundred, etc. To me the much bigger existential threat to Test cricket is coming from Test crickets abysmal governance, which is run almost exclusively these days by the ECB, BCCI and CA. Agnew as the BBCs leading cricket correspondent is in the prime position to write about this, inform more people of that situation and put pressure on the ECB to do better. Yet he doesn't. As much as I like Aggers as a commentator, that makes me quite sad.
Don't think one can take the likes of Vaughan seriously when they keep going on about the IPL. Since the time of Kevin Pietersen, England cricket elite have been confused about the IPL, they really love to hate it...
It should be noted, that a good number of England's white ball players, including the skipper himself, are part of the IPL currently, living in conditions os strict enough restrictions... English cricket's targeting of the IPL is selective and based on convenience...

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Post by msp83 Tue 21 Sep 2021, 4:53 pm

The one lot who would be extremely happy at the ECB decisoin to pull out of Pakistan tour, would be the IPL team managements, as they would hhave all their England players available for the entire duration of the IPL. More than India's pulling out of the Manchester test, I guess England's sneaky letdown of Pakistan is what needs to be contextualized in terms of the IPL.

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Post by Duty281 Tue 21 Sep 2021, 4:58 pm

msp83 wrote:The one lot who would be extremely happy at the ECB decisoin to pull out of Pakistan tour, would be the IPL team managements, as they would hhave all their England players available for the entire duration of the IPL. More than India's pulling out of the Manchester test, I guess England's sneaky letdown of Pakistan is what needs to be contextualized in terms of the IPL.

It was already established that England's IPL players were most likely going to stay with the IPL, rather than join the tour of Pakistan. Would have also allowed England to look at more fringe players ahead of the World Cup.

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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 5:20 pm

msp83 wrote:
king_carlos wrote:Well said, Olly.

It's sadly been drifting that way since Giles Clarke, N. Srinivasan and Wally Edwards were the architects of the ECB, BCCI and CA carving up governance of the international game to prioritising their own finances before all other Test nations, let alone associates hoping to one day push onto being a Test member.

Given that BBCs top cricket commentators such as Agnew and Vaughan were quick to (fairly in my opinion) point out that the IPL clearly had a factor in 5th Test being cancelled I hope they are equally quick to condemn the ECBs lack of support for other Test playing nations outside of the big three after this latest cancellation.

Overall I enjoy TMS coverage a lot and I really like Agnew as a commentator and writer on cricket but one area that really grates is his refusal to comment on the ECBs part in the big three taking over the governance of cricket and the negative impact that has had on so many Test nations. He frequently talks about how he feels he has to "bat for Test cricket" and "defend Test cricket" yet he only ever seems to feel it needs defending from T20, the IPL, the Hundred, etc. To me the much bigger existential threat to Test cricket is coming from Test crickets abysmal governance, which is run almost exclusively these days by the ECB, BCCI and CA. Agnew as the BBCs leading cricket correspondent is in the prime position to write about this, inform more people of that situation and put pressure on the ECB to do better. Yet he doesn't. As much as I like Aggers as a commentator, that makes me quite sad.
Don't think one can take the likes of Vaughan seriously when they keep going on about the IPL. Since the time of Kevin Pietersen, England cricket elite have been confused about the IPL, they really love to hate it...
It should be noted, that a good number of England's white ball players, including the skipper himself, are part of the IPL currently, living in conditions os strict enough restrictions... English cricket's targeting of the IPL is selective and based on convenience...

"English cricket" and Michael Vaughan's twitter aren't mutually exclusive. TMS commentators are well connected but don't speak directly for England's players and management.

Since Morgan took over as skipper England have been very supportive of players going to the IPL. One of the first things Morgan made clear as captain of the ODI and T20i side was that more England players needed to be involved in top T20 leagues, i.e. the IPL, for them to improve as a side. It's worked wonders for the white ball side too as England's improvement has been astronomic.

As Duty says I'm pretty sure that England had already decided they'd let the IPL players stay if their teams qualified for the knockouts. It would reduce flight and isolation time for players, plus the IPL knockouts would realistically provide better preparation for the World T20 than a very brief bilateral series.

With isolation periods required for the IPL sides upon arriving in UAE their Test players would have missed games had they flown out after the 5th Test. Hence the justifiable suggestion that the reorganised IPL affected the Test being cancelled.

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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 5:25 pm

With the continued way that msp83 is shoehorning this back into discussion I'm quite looking forward to the one off 2032 Test between England and new Test member Oban when Ollie Pope asks to miss the match to attend the birth of his 4th child and msp pops his head in to remind us that Pope is now a hypocrite for missing a Test match and it must be part of a diabolical plot by the ECB to undermine Oban's rise to a Test playing nation.

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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 5:39 pm

Back to the cricket, god forbid, this series being cancelled does remove a chance for England to look at the make up of:

A - Their bowling attack without Jofra and with Mills

B - Their batting lineup without Stokes - he may still return to the squad but that doesn't seem guaranteed by any means

Problem B is the less significant one as Livingstone is a fantastic T20 player and arguably more suited to the batting role at 6 that Stokes had been filling anway.

Problem A is more significant. Mills doesn't bowl in the PP very well as Olly has highlighted, whilst Archer is outstanding there. I suspect that is why Woakes has returned to the set-up given his excellent ODI bowling in the PP for a prolonged period.

Surran or Willey would be the other obvious candidates to bowl in the PP as they are good with the swinging ball. I don't think you can rely on either Surran or Willey for 4 overs in every T20 in UAE conditions against top teams though which means looking at Livingstone as a 6th bowling option if Stokes weren't available.

1.Buttler (wk)
2.Roy
3.Malan
4.Bairstow
5.Morgan
6.Livingstone
7.Moeen/Surran/Willey
8.Woakes
9.Rashid
10.Wood
11.Mills

I think ideally from the squad picked England will want two pace bowlers in Wood and Mills for the key games. Wood to bowl predominantly in the middle and Mills predominantly at the death.

This is where Dilly bowling in the PP and at the death this year to get experience becomes so shrewd from Morgan I think. Without Archer we have lots of bowlers who excel in certain parts of the game but not many that can bowl consistently at any point in the innings. Surran and Willey are good with the new ball when it briefly swings. Mills (and Jordan to an extent) can be very good at the death. Wood is really dangerous in the middle overs, applying pressure once the fielding restrictions relax but before he's under the pressure of 'death bowling'. Woakes can be good in the PP and the death to be fair but doesn't have as much T20 experience. I think Morgan was using Dilly in those different roles to give him another trump card that can be dangerous in any period in case Archer is injured.

There's a lot of firepower there but not quite the balance and experience of the ODI side that won in 2019.

If George Garton can make an impact with RCB I wonder if he might pressure anyone in that squad? Left arm pace and big lower order hitting are a useful T20 combination.

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Post by msp83 Tue 21 Sep 2021, 6:41 pm

king_carlos wrote:With the continued way that msp83 is shoehorning this back into discussion I'm quite looking forward to the one off 2032 Test between England and new Test member Oban when Ollie Pope asks to miss the match to attend the birth of his 4th child and msp pops his head in to remind us that Pope is now a hypocrite for missing a Test match and it must be part of a diabolical plot by the ECB to undermine Oban's rise to a Test playing nation.
Rather unlikely, Carlos. Not because I wouldn't want to remind those who do well to have one from time to time, but because, A, the big 3 aren't too interested in adding too many more full members into the roster, and B, with his technical limitations, Oliver Pope is unlikely to have a decade long test career at the top... Perhaps you can amend your story with Haseeb Hameed instead?

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Post by king_carlos Tue 21 Sep 2021, 8:31 pm

msp83 wrote:
king_carlos wrote:With the continued way that msp83 is shoehorning this back into discussion I'm quite looking forward to the one off 2032 Test between England and new Test member Oban when Ollie Pope asks to miss the match to attend the birth of his 4th child and msp pops his head in to remind us that Pope is now a hypocrite for missing a Test match and it must be part of a diabolical plot by the ECB to undermine Oban's rise to a Test playing nation.
Rather unlikely, Carlos. Not because I wouldn't want to remind those who do well to have one from time to time, but because, A, the big 3 aren't too interested in adding too many more full members into the roster, and B, with his technical limitations, Oliver Pope is unlikely to have a decade long test career at the top... Perhaps you can amend your story with Haseeb Hameed instead?

Laugh Laugh I should've seen that coming to be fair.

I might give Death of a Gentleman another watch this week. I don't think I've watchd it all the way through since my first viewing and it's a really well made documentary from two cricket journalists I enjoy the work of in Sam Collins and Jarrod Kimber.

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Post by guildfordbat Tue 21 Sep 2021, 10:01 pm

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
AlciG wrote:I searched but couldn't find if I'm allowed to link to other sites, so please delete this post if I'm not.

Apparently what is good for the goose is not good for the gander

It's a very good article as usual from Dobell with a lot of prudent examples of the ECBs double standards.

Agree - he is going to be a massive massive loss to Cricinfo when he leaves in the next month or so.

I would hope these recent events, albeit while not induced in the correct way with Covid/terror threat, will lead to a review of the international calendar, and more of the ECB/BCCI/ACB willing to tour countries more often beyond playing each other. This is what I hope...I suspect we may be in the early stages of some of the "middle" test nations being shunted from the top table...

I saw a stat the other day that the last time Australia played a test match abroad was in October 2019. I appreciate there has been a worldwide pandemic on, but if one of your major top 3 essentially hasn't played a test abroad for two years...and now you have ECB/BCCI pulling out of things abroad too, I think we might be nearing a tipping point one way or another

Hi Olly - I didn't know Dobell was leaving Cricinfo. Great loss as you say. Any details as to why and where he's going? I was seated near to the press guys during the Oval Test and had a quick word with him. A good guy for sure. Amongst other things - and Carlos will lap this one up - he's a fine supporter of cricket outgrounds including Guildford.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Wed 22 Sep 2021, 8:52 am

king_carlos wrote:Back to the cricket, god forbid, this series being cancelled does remove a chance for England to look at the make up of:

A - Their bowling attack without Jofra and with Mills

B - Their batting lineup without Stokes - he may still return to the squad but that doesn't seem guaranteed by any means

Problem B is the less significant one as Livingstone is a fantastic T20 player and arguably more suited to the batting role at 6 that Stokes had been filling anway.

Problem A is more significant. Mills doesn't bowl in the PP very well as Olly has highlighted, whilst Archer is outstanding there. I suspect that is why Woakes has returned to the set-up given his excellent ODI bowling in the PP for a prolonged period.

Surran or Willey would be the other obvious candidates to bowl in the PP as they are good with the swinging ball. I don't think you can rely on either Surran or Willey for 4 overs in every T20 in UAE conditions against top teams though which means looking at Livingstone as a 6th bowling option if Stokes weren't available.

1.Buttler (wk)
2.Roy
3.Malan
4.Bairstow
5.Morgan
6.Livingstone
7.Moeen/Surran/Willey
8.Woakes
9.Rashid
10.Wood
11.Mills

I think ideally from the squad picked England will want two pace bowlers in Wood and Mills for the key games. Wood to bowl predominantly in the middle and Mills predominantly at the death.

This is where Dilly bowling in the PP and at the death this year to get experience becomes so shrewd from Morgan I think. Without Archer we have lots of bowlers who excel in certain parts of the game but not many that can bowl consistently at any point in the innings. Surran and Willey are good with the new ball when it briefly swings. Mills (and Jordan to an extent) can be very good at the death. Wood is really dangerous in the middle overs, applying pressure once the fielding restrictions relax but before he's under the pressure of 'death bowling'. Woakes can be good in the PP and the death to be fair but doesn't have as much T20 experience. I think Morgan was using Dilly in those different roles to give him another trump card that can be dangerous in any period in case Archer is injured.

There's a lot of firepower there but not quite the balance and experience of the ODI side that won in 2019.

If George Garton can make an impact with RCB I wonder if he might pressure anyone in that squad? Left arm pace and big lower order hitting are a useful T20 combination.

I think England may have made a slight error in not having Dawson in the actual squad, and only on the reserve list at the moment. I am not sure you need both Woakes and Willey in the squad, I 100% would not be playing them in the same side at any point in the UAE. Wonder if they might sneak Dawson into the squad...on obviously turning wickets he would be a very handy option to have at 8 if England wanted to go spin heavy with him/Rashid/Moeen.

I don't think it is out of the question that Moeen and Surran both play, if Malan continues his poor form of 2021 into the tournament itself. I think he will be pretty disappointed those warm up games are off, as it was a prime opportunity for him to gain some form before the tournament proper, now he's going into the tournament with a fair bit of pressure on (albeit reduced with no Stokes). If Malan continues to struggle, I think they'd possibly shift Livingstone up to 3, Moeen to 6 and Surran at 7. Although if they were facing a spin heavy attack, definitely an argument for sending Moeen in at 3 if there is spin in the powerplay.

I would be fairly certain, bar injury, the XI for the first game will be;

Roy
Buttler
Malan
Bairstow
Morgan
Livingstone
Moeen
Woakes
Rashid
Wood
Mills

With Woakes/Wood taking the new ball, Rashid/Mills maybe getting an over in the powerplay...and if the opposition has left hander top order players, very much likely Moeen gets a go in the powerplay too. Definitely is the area I am most concerned about the XI, the new ball/powerplay bowling without Jofra, I think it could be a fatal weakness...(as much as I like Sir Chris, there is a reason he's barely played any franchise or T20i cricket in recent years)
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Wed 22 Sep 2021, 8:55 am

guildfordbat wrote:
Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
AlciG wrote:I searched but couldn't find if I'm allowed to link to other sites, so please delete this post if I'm not.

Apparently what is good for the goose is not good for the gander

It's a very good article as usual from Dobell with a lot of prudent examples of the ECBs double standards.

Agree - he is going to be a massive massive loss to Cricinfo when he leaves in the next month or so.

I would hope these recent events, albeit while not induced in the correct way with Covid/terror threat, will lead to a review of the international calendar, and more of the ECB/BCCI/ACB willing to tour countries more often beyond playing each other. This is what I hope...I suspect we may be in the early stages of some of the "middle" test nations being shunted from the top table...

I saw a stat the other day that the last time Australia played a test match abroad was in October 2019. I appreciate there has been a worldwide pandemic on, but if one of your major top 3 essentially hasn't played a test abroad for two years...and now you have ECB/BCCI pulling out of things abroad too, I think we might be nearing a tipping point one way or another

Hi Olly - I didn't know Dobell was leaving Cricinfo. Great loss as you say. Any details as to why and where he's going? I was seated near to the press guys during the Oval Test and had a quick word with him. A good guy for sure. Amongst other things - and Carlos will lap this one up - he's a fine supporter of cricket outgrounds including Guildford.

No details on his next step yet - he announced it via twitter with this tweet;

https://twitter.com/GeorgeDobell1/status/1437357273404293120?s=20

And then it was followed up by this...

https://twitter.com/GeorgeDobell1/status/1438058600476430336?s=20

So while the official reason why he is leaving isn't disclosed, I think we can read between the lines pretty easily there...!
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Post by guildfordbat Wed 22 Sep 2021, 9:05 am

Thanks, Olly. I'll look at tonight.

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Post by msp83 Wed 22 Sep 2021, 9:06 am

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:
guildfordbat wrote:
Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
AlciG wrote:I searched but couldn't find if I'm allowed to link to other sites, so please delete this post if I'm not.

Apparently what is good for the goose is not good for the gander

It's a very good article as usual from Dobell with a lot of prudent examples of the ECBs double standards.

Agree - he is going to be a massive massive loss to Cricinfo when he leaves in the next month or so.

I would hope these recent events, albeit while not induced in the correct way with Covid/terror threat, will lead to a review of the international calendar, and more of the ECB/BCCI/ACB willing to tour countries more often beyond playing each other. This is what I hope...I suspect we may be in the early stages of some of the "middle" test nations being shunted from the top table...

I saw a stat the other day that the last time Australia played a test match abroad was in October 2019. I appreciate there has been a worldwide pandemic on, but if one of your major top 3 essentially hasn't played a test abroad for two years...and now you have ECB/BCCI pulling out of things abroad too, I think we might be nearing a tipping point one way or another

Hi Olly - I didn't know Dobell was leaving Cricinfo. Great loss as you say. Any details as to why and where he's going? I was seated near to the press guys during the Oval Test and had a quick word with him. A good guy for sure. Amongst other things - and Carlos will lap this one up - he's a fine supporter of cricket outgrounds including Guildford.

No details on his next step yet - he announced it via twitter with this tweet;

https://twitter.com/GeorgeDobell1/status/1437357273404293120?s=20

And then it was followed up by this...

https://twitter.com/GeorgeDobell1/status/1438058600476430336?s=20

So while the official reason why he is leaving isn't disclosed, I think we can read between the lines pretty easily there...!

Dobell is someone I really like to read on cricinfo. Cricinfo's loss, that he's leaving.

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Post by Mind the windows Tino. Wed 22 Sep 2021, 9:40 am

king_carlos wrote:

1.Buttler (wk)
2.Roy
3.Malan
4.Bairstow
5.Morgan
6.Livingstone

They might need to bother about bowling if that top 6 comes off. Frighteningly good potential for massive scores there.

They can be like Keegan's Newcastle in the 90's and just outscore the opposition.

Mind the windows Tino.
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Post by msp83 Wed 22 Sep 2021, 9:56 am

Mind the windows Tino. wrote:
king_carlos wrote:

1.Buttler (wk)
2.Roy
3.Malan
4.Bairstow
5.Morgan
6.Livingstone

They might need to bother about bowling if that top 6 comes off. Frighteningly good potential for massive scores there.

They can be like Keegan's Newcastle in the 90's and just outscore the opposition.
England's bowling make-up will also be interesting. Guess both Moeen and Rashid will play, adding further depth to the batting. But who will be their designated powerplay, and death bowlers? Sam might be in with his all-round game, but he's not particularly impactful as a bowler beyond the initial powerplay overs.

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Post by JDizzle Sun 26 Sep 2021, 10:30 pm

Cricinfo reporting that Moeen is going to retire from Test cricket.

Will post some stuff on his career tomorrow, which has been one of the more enigmatic ones in recent memory - but the pragmatic take seems to be this is the first domino to fall in people who don’t want to go to Australia with the restrictions this winter.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 27 Sep 2021, 12:10 am

A shame to hear that Mo is retiring. I've always found him an incredibly likable cricketer both on and off the field.

His batting never truly flourished at Test level after his first 3 years where he scored all 5 of his Test centuries. 2016 in particular was brilliant with the bat when he scored 4 centuries and over 1000 runs in the calendar year. His technical deficiencies outside the off stump and especially to the short ball were identified after this however, they are issues that Mo never really addressed hence his batting declining at Test level. He filled every batting position from 1-9 along the way though which no doubt will not have helped him at all.

With the ball he came in as a part time spinner who batted at 3 for Worcestershire, at times Mo bowled some magnificent and match winning spells. His stats tell a good story with a fantastic strike rate but also a high economy and thus a high average. He could put such wonderful flight, dip and turn on the ball which given he came to bowling relatively late makes you wonder what might have been had he trained as a full time spinner earlier in his career.

A huge natural talent and very likable cricketer who always gave his all for the team regardless of the situation. I hope Mo still has a lot to give to England in white ball cricket.

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Post by alfie Mon 27 Sep 2021, 5:28 am

Can't say I am exactly astonished. I was fairly sure he wouldn't go to Australia (I would question whether it made sense to even select him anyway, to be honest , based on his recent form and his previous trip there) but thought he might have continued to make himself available for future matches , rather than quitting altogether.

But I guess it makes sense : he is 34 ; and probably better suited to white ball stuff these days : concentrating on those forms may prolong his career. Sights on the next 50 over World Cup ...

As to his Test career I am sure there will be a lot (more) written here and elsewhere . All I'd say for now is he was probably a better batsman than an average of 28 would suggest. All the messing him around in the order really didn't help him. On the flip side he probably overachieved as a bowler.

In any case he certainly played his part in some of England's better recent Test series and overall has plenty of good memories to look back on. Like KC I look forward to see what he will do in the short form stuff...

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Post by kingraf Mon 27 Sep 2021, 7:58 am

It's funny but in the end his career doesn't read too far off from Chris Cairns and Andrew Flintoff's, and while they were considered untouchable cornerstones, Ali, who has the ninth most Man of the matches in English cricket history (although, admittedly that stat only really goes back like 50 years), couldn't get solid runway at any point in his career past 2017. He obviously didn't quite have the consistency needed, but I think the most damning stat about how he was handled is that he had more wickets than any other cricketer in the 12 months going into the Ashes 2019, and yet he played only one Test in that series, and wouldn't play again for 18 months. Actual malpractice
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Post by Duty281 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 8:43 am

That one test he played in the Ashes 2019 he was utterly diabolical with the ball, his confidence was shot to pieces and there was no chance of him making a positive contribution to the rest of the series.

Anyway no real surprise to hear of Moeen's retirement from tests and now he can focus on limited-overs cricket, which is his strength. He had a fine test career for a few years, contributed some brilliant match-winning performances in that time, and I don't feel his final averages with either bat or ball do him enough justice as the player he was at his peak. Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him, his batting was found out, and there was an understandable desire from him to focus on limited-overs stuff. He was unfairly picked for the recent test series v India, didn't deliver much, and it's an unfortunate way to end for such a fun player.

Hopefully Moeen will play a telling contribution for England in the two upcoming T20 World Cups.

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Post by kingraf Mon 27 Sep 2021, 8:48 am

Duty281 wrote:That one test he played in the Ashes 2019 he was utterly diabolical with the ball, his confidence was shot to pieces and there was no chance of him making a positive contribution to the rest of the series.
...
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

To be clear, he finished off with 62 wickets at a bowling average of 28 in his last 14 Tests. Complete and utter desertion of form.
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Post by Soul Requiem Mon 27 Sep 2021, 8:52 am

kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:That one test he played in the Ashes 2019 he was utterly diabolical with the ball, his confidence was shot to pieces and there was no chance of him making a positive contribution to the rest of the series.
...
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

To be clear, he finished off with 62 wickets at a bowling average of 28 in his last 14 Tests. Complete and utter desertion of form.

You're going back three years there and that ignores how poor he was in that first Ashes test, it's not overplaying it to say his lack of control in that second innings cost England the game. That combined with his batting being found out meant he was rightfully dropped.

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Post by Duty281 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 8:57 am

kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:That one test he played in the Ashes 2019 he was utterly diabolical with the ball, his confidence was shot to pieces and there was no chance of him making a positive contribution to the rest of the series.
...
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

To be clear, he finished off with 62 wickets at a bowling average of 28 in his last 14 Tests. Complete and utter desertion of form.

For clarity I was mainly referring to his batting where his average was close to a tailender from 2018 onwards. But his bowling did also slump with a 50 average in his most recent test series and that horrendous test in Birmingham (there was no way England could have picked him again in that Ashes series); plus he never sorted out his control issues with the ball.

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Post by VTR Mon 27 Sep 2021, 11:20 am

Not much to add to what others have said. A really good Test player for England from debut in 2014 right through to 2018. Gradually fell out of favour after that, but the form really did start to tail off. Still, for 5 summers he was a key part in an England side that were very hard to beat at home

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Post by kingraf Mon 27 Sep 2021, 11:38 am

Soul Requiem wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:That one test he played in the Ashes 2019 he was utterly diabolical with the ball, his confidence was shot to pieces and there was no chance of him making a positive contribution to the rest of the series.
...
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

To be clear, he finished off with 62 wickets at a bowling average of 28 in his last 14 Tests. Complete and utter desertion of form.

You're going back three years there and that ignores how poor he was in that first Ashes test, it's not overplaying it to say his lack of control in that second innings cost England the game. That combined with his batting being found out meant he was rightfully dropped.

I went back a few years because, you know...

Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings

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Post by Duty281 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 11:52 am

kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings


It wasn't one bad game, it was 17 tests between 2017-2019 where Moeen was batting with an average of under 20 and there was no indication he was set to improve on that - he was brought back recently and continued to average similar. With the ball it may have only been one abject test in Birmingham, but Moeen is a player that relies heavily on confidence and without it he goes to pieces. He lost it in Birmingham. If he'd been picked for further tests in the Ashes he would have been similarly bludgeoned.

I trust you're not being serious about Anderson. Even with his somewhat concerning lack of second innings wickets he's still averaging 23.4 for the year.

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Post by kingraf Mon 27 Sep 2021, 12:11 pm

Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings


It wasn't one bad game, it was 17 tests between 2017-2019 where Moeen was batting with an average of under 20 and there was no indication he was set to improve on that - he was brought back recently and continued to average similar. With the ball it may have only been one abject test in Birmingham, but Moeen is a player that relies heavily on confidence and without it he goes to pieces. He lost it in Birmingham. If he'd been picked for further tests in the Ashes he would have been similarly bludgeoned.

I trust you're not being serious about Anderson. Even with his somewhat concerning lack of second innings wickets he's still averaging 23.4 for the year.


I don't know why you're giving his batting numbers when he literally could have been selected as a specialist bowler given the numbers. The idea that a player batting at #8, as he did in the Ashes gets dropped because his batting hasn't quite been up to par when he averages 23 with the ball the previous year is craziness.

As for Anderson. Him being impotent with the ball is half the reason the India series went 2-1 India instead of England. Fourth Test, with a 100 run lead, and the new ball - James goes 1-83. Second Test with India there for the taking at 15/4 and again with England still in with a chance at 194/7, Anderson claims that 18 years into his international career he got tricked into bowling stupidly by three bouncers at the end of day three and goes wicketless bowling nothing balls.

Also the irony of Anderson averaging 23 for year being good enough and Moeen averaging 23 not being good enough is not lost
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Post by Duty281 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 1:28 pm

kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings


It wasn't one bad game, it was 17 tests between 2017-2019 where Moeen was batting with an average of under 20 and there was no indication he was set to improve on that - he was brought back recently and continued to average similar. With the ball it may have only been one abject test in Birmingham, but Moeen is a player that relies heavily on confidence and without it he goes to pieces. He lost it in Birmingham. If he'd been picked for further tests in the Ashes he would have been similarly bludgeoned.

I trust you're not being serious about Anderson. Even with his somewhat concerning lack of second innings wickets he's still averaging 23.4 for the year.


I don't know why you're giving his batting numbers when he literally could have been selected as a specialist bowler given the numbers. The idea that a player batting at #8, as he did in the Ashes gets dropped because his batting hasn't quite been up to par when he averages 23 with the ball the previous year is craziness.

As for Anderson. Him being impotent with the ball is half the reason the India series went 2-1 India instead of England. Fourth Test, with a 100 run lead, and the new ball - James goes 1-83. Second Test with India there for the taking at 15/4 and again with England still in with a chance at 194/7, Anderson claims that 18 years into his international career he got tricked into bowling stupidly by three bouncers at the end of day three and goes wicketless bowling nothing balls.

Also the irony of Anderson averaging 23 for year being good enough and Moeen averaging 23 not being good enough is not lost

As said, he was dropped because his confidence was shot at Birmingham culminating in that awful second innings display where he was smashed around the ground. If he'd been picked for the next test it would have been the same result. Leach replaced him and put in a decent performance with the ball.

His batting numbers are important because they're part of the reason he was in the side. When his batting fell off the competition from specialist spinners like Leach drew a lot closer.

Moeen also never averaged 23 in a year. His best was 28.09 in 2014. Comparisons to Anderson are absurd considering that Anderson has averaged under 24 with the ball for seven of the last eight years.

And to lay half the reason for England losing two tests out of four v India at a bowler who took 15 wickets at under 25 is also odd. I think quite a few bowlers would like to be that 'impotent' with the ball.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 27 Sep 2021, 2:26 pm

king_carlos wrote:A shame to hear that Mo is retiring. I've always found him an incredibly likable cricketer both on and off the field.

His batting never truly flourished at Test level after his first 3 years where he scored all 5 of his Test centuries. 2016 in particular was brilliant with the bat when he scored 4 centuries and over 1000 runs in the calendar year. His technical deficiencies outside the off stump and especially to the short ball were identified after this however, they are issues that Mo never really addressed hence his batting declining at Test level. He filled every batting position from 1-9 along the way though which no doubt will not have helped him at all.

With the ball he came in as a part time spinner who batted at 3 for Worcestershire, at times Mo bowled some magnificent and match winning spells. His stats tell a good story with a fantastic strike rate but also a high economy and thus a high average. He could put such wonderful flight, dip and turn on the ball which given he came to bowling relatively late makes you wonder what might have been had he trained as a full time spinner earlier in his career.

A huge natural talent and very likable cricketer who always gave his all for the team regardless of the situation. I hope Mo still has a lot to give to England in white ball cricket.


Very well put KC (and others on here) - a real shame his test career tailed off towards the end, but a magnificently fun bat and bowler to watch when he was in form, capable of brilliance (his knock at Headingley in I think 2014 against Sri Lanka, when Anderson was out 2nd last ball of the match to lose was one I'll remember for a long time).

Glad he is focusing on white ball cricket now - as Duty noted, it really was unfair of England this summer to bring him in out of the cold in red ball to play. And he is a crucial player for the white ball sides still, especially in the upcoming t20 world cup!

JDizzle wrote:Cricinfo reporting that Moeen is going to retire from Test cricket.

Will post some stuff on his career tomorrow, which has been one of the more enigmatic ones in recent memory - but the pragmatic take seems to be this is the first domino to fall in people who don’t want to go to Australia with the restrictions this winter.

I did note Dobell posted an article saying that the proposals the ECB had received from the ACB were "better than hoped" - which while not exactly a ringing endorsement, might be a step in the right direction. Either way I think you are right JDizzle (albeit I am not sure some who pull out of the tour will retire like Moeen has)
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Post by dummy_half Mon 27 Sep 2021, 2:41 pm

Agree witht he comment earlier that he probably under-achieved as a batsman at Test level but probably more than made up for that with his bowling contributions, particularly int he first half of his Test career.

Does though show how bare the cupboard was for spinners around 2014, after Swann's retirement, that we ended up with our best Test spin bowler being someone who was primarily a batsman in the County game.

I expect he'll still be there or thereabouts in the white ball stuff for a couple of years, probably up to the next 50 over world cup if he can stay fit and healthy, plus have a decent sunset in the franchise T20 world, where his ball striking and chipping in a few overs with a few wickets make him so useful.

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Post by kingraf Mon 27 Sep 2021, 3:10 pm

Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings


It wasn't one bad game, it was 17 tests between 2017-2019 where Moeen was batting with an average of under 20 and there was no indication he was set to improve on that - he was brought back recently and continued to average similar. With the ball it may have only been one abject test in Birmingham, but Moeen is a player that relies heavily on confidence and without it he goes to pieces. He lost it in Birmingham. If he'd been picked for further tests in the Ashes he would have been similarly bludgeoned.

I trust you're not being serious about Anderson. Even with his somewhat concerning lack of second innings wickets he's still averaging 23.4 for the year.


I don't know why you're giving his batting numbers when he literally could have been selected as a specialist bowler given the numbers. The idea that a player batting at #8, as he did in the Ashes gets dropped because his batting hasn't quite been up to par when he averages 23 with the ball the previous year is craziness.

As for Anderson. Him being impotent with the ball is half the reason the India series went 2-1 India instead of England. Fourth Test, with a 100 run lead, and the new ball - James goes 1-83. Second Test with India there for the taking at 15/4 and again with England still in with a chance at 194/7, Anderson claims that 18 years into his international career he got tricked into bowling stupidly by three bouncers at the end of day three and goes wicketless bowling nothing balls.

Also the irony of Anderson averaging 23 for year being good enough and Moeen averaging 23 not being good enough is not lost

As said, he was dropped because his confidence was shot at Birmingham culminating in that awful second innings display where he was smashed around the ground. If he'd been picked for the next test it would have been the same result. Leach replaced him and put in a decent performance with the ball.

His batting numbers are important because they're part of the reason he was in the side. When his batting fell off the competition from specialist spinners like Leach drew a lot closer.

Moeen also never averaged 23 in a year. His best was 28.09 in 2014. Comparisons to Anderson are absurd considering that Anderson has averaged under 24 with the ball for seven of the last eight years.

And to lay half the reason for England losing two tests out of four v India at a bowler who took 15 wickets at under 25 is also odd. I think quite a few bowlers would like to be that 'impotent' with the ball.

Firstly in the 12 months prior to the first Ashes Test he averaged 23 with the ball. Check your dictionary, a year is 12 months. It's not rocket science.

Secondly, maybe you're right. Certainly given Anderson's record in South Africa, Australia and India, where combined he averages north of 30 at a strike rate of over 66, which is plain shameful for a 'strike' bowler, expecting him to take the tough wickets when the grass has died down and pitch has flattened out probably is a step too far.
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Post by king_carlos Mon 27 Sep 2021, 3:48 pm

At least 606v2 is marking Mo's Test retirement the same way we did most his Test career. With an argument about whether he should have been selected.

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Post by Duty281 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 4:14 pm

kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
kingraf wrote:
Duty281 wrote:
Sadly his test career lost its way in the last few years as confidence and form deserted him

In what world does one bad game outweigh your contribution in the 12 months prior? James Anderson spent this summer getting chance after chance while he produced dud after dud in the second innings


It wasn't one bad game, it was 17 tests between 2017-2019 where Moeen was batting with an average of under 20 and there was no indication he was set to improve on that - he was brought back recently and continued to average similar. With the ball it may have only been one abject test in Birmingham, but Moeen is a player that relies heavily on confidence and without it he goes to pieces. He lost it in Birmingham. If he'd been picked for further tests in the Ashes he would have been similarly bludgeoned.

I trust you're not being serious about Anderson. Even with his somewhat concerning lack of second innings wickets he's still averaging 23.4 for the year.


I don't know why you're giving his batting numbers when he literally could have been selected as a specialist bowler given the numbers. The idea that a player batting at #8, as he did in the Ashes gets dropped because his batting hasn't quite been up to par when he averages 23 with the ball the previous year is craziness.

As for Anderson. Him being impotent with the ball is half the reason the India series went 2-1 India instead of England. Fourth Test, with a 100 run lead, and the new ball - James goes 1-83. Second Test with India there for the taking at 15/4 and again with England still in with a chance at 194/7, Anderson claims that 18 years into his international career he got tricked into bowling stupidly by three bouncers at the end of day three and goes wicketless bowling nothing balls.

Also the irony of Anderson averaging 23 for year being good enough and Moeen averaging 23 not being good enough is not lost

As said, he was dropped because his confidence was shot at Birmingham culminating in that awful second innings display where he was smashed around the ground. If he'd been picked for the next test it would have been the same result. Leach replaced him and put in a decent performance with the ball.

His batting numbers are important because they're part of the reason he was in the side. When his batting fell off the competition from specialist spinners like Leach drew a lot closer.

Moeen also never averaged 23 in a year. His best was 28.09 in 2014. Comparisons to Anderson are absurd considering that Anderson has averaged under 24 with the ball for seven of the last eight years.

And to lay half the reason for England losing two tests out of four v India at a bowler who took 15 wickets at under 25 is also odd. I think quite a few bowlers would like to be that 'impotent' with the ball.

Firstly in the 12 months prior to the first Ashes Test he averaged 23 with the ball. Check your dictionary, a year is 12 months. It's not rocket science.

Secondly, maybe you're right. Certainly given Anderson's record in South Africa, Australia and India, where combined he averages north of 30 at a strike rate of over 66, which is plain shameful for a 'strike' bowler, expecting him to take the tough wickets when the grass has died down and pitch has flattened out probably is a step too far.

No need for the patronising tone, thanks. I thought you were talking about full calendar years. Regardless, Moeen was not dropped because of his bowling average, he was dropped because his batting had fallen apart and because his confidence had gone. The rightness of such a decision was borne out by Moeen not getting involved in FC cricket again to win back his place and how poor he was on his return in 2021.

Not quite sure why Anderson riles you so much, but oh well.

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Post by msp83 Mon 27 Sep 2021, 8:40 pm

A player whom I didn't rate too highly when he came in as the led spinner for England having been a batter who could bowl at county level. A batter who impressed me with an unforgetable innings against Sri Lanka in his very second game, though I was quite wanting England to lose to Lanka, following the KPGate. A player who irritated the hell out of me when he outdid Murali and Warne, when bowling to Indian batters. Then he topped it with some steller batting displays. I started appreciating him more as an all-rounder as he developed into England's number 1 spinner despite making it to the side as a batter mainly. That does take some doing. After Fredye Flintoff and Pietersen He and Stokes are the 2 players who have most made me follow... Unlike the other 3, my appreciation of Moeen, is something that evolved with time, not from the outset.
I was surprised when England dropped him in 2019, considering he was among their best bowlers at that time. Thought he was done at the top level when he took that break. Was shocked when England didn't select him when the alternatives were so unselectable and mediocre.
But here we are, he has called it quits as far as test cricket is concerned. Wishing him all the very best for the rest of his cricketing journey, and beyond.
I don't watch the IPL much. But there are a few players, who make me follow the game on cricinfo. And Moeen, is one of them.

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Post by JDizzle Mon 27 Sep 2021, 9:26 pm

king_carlos wrote:A shame to hear that Mo is retiring. I've always found him an incredibly likable cricketer both on and off the field.

His batting never truly flourished at Test level after his first 3 years where he scored all 5 of his Test centuries. 2016 in particular was brilliant with the bat when he scored 4 centuries and over 1000 runs in the calendar year. His technical deficiencies outside the off stump and especially to the short ball were identified after this however, they are issues that Mo never really addressed hence his batting declining at Test level. He filled every batting position from 1-9 along the way though which no doubt will not have helped him at all.

With the ball he came in as a part time spinner who batted at 3 for Worcestershire, at times Mo bowled some magnificent and match winning spells. His stats tell a good story with a fantastic strike rate but also a high economy and thus a high average. He could put such wonderful flight, dip and turn on the ball which given he came to bowling relatively late makes you wonder what might have been had he trained as a full time spinner earlier in his career.

A huge natural talent and very likable cricketer who always gave his all for the team regardless of the situation. I hope Mo still has a lot to give to England in white ball cricket.

Moeen certainly goes into the frame of the most elegant England batter I have seen - him, Bell and Trescothick would be a free flowing line up. Carlos nails it though, generally an inability to play the short ball and leave well are fatal flaws to a Test cricketer. And so it proved as his career progressed.

I read an article once about how the ECB identified Swann and Panesar as they were the two spinners by far who imparted the most revolutions on the ball in England so I would presume that was one of the key things they liked about Moeen initially. And you could certainly see that in his bowling in some of the balls he bowled. There was nice interview with him today where he said he always felt his best ball could get anyone out, and we have seen him bowl some incredible deliveries - the ball to Kohli last winter a highlight.

I was at Edgbaston for Day 4 of that Ashes test in 2019. And sometimes you just know when someone needs to be taken out of the firing line. We saw it with Ballance in 2015 and even with Sibley this year, where their records suggest they should perhaps gets more time but you can just tell they are shot.

I certainly don't blame Moeen for calling it quits now. Australia have broken many English players in normal times, and if his heart and mind just aren't in it any more then it is best for him to go now. In many ways it might do England a favour in the long run - it will force them to try and properly balance the side instead of taking the almost 'easy' way out and turning, almost unfairly, back to Moeen again to try fix the fact they can't bat.

In some ways, we might see Mo's biggest impact in the next 10 years if he has inspired any young British muslims to take up the game as that is a community that is sorely underrepresented in the cricket pyramid.

In the short time, I just hope they use him right int he upcoming WT20! With his mind cleared, and turning pitches in the UAE which will suit his bowling and more importantly his batting... Maybe this is the winter of Mo. Get him batting three.

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Post by msp83 Tue 28 Sep 2021, 6:36 am

About Moeen-management, they should have a word with MS Dhoni, at CSK they make him feel valued, batted him at 3 in place of Suresh Raina, who has been one of the most impactful T-20 players from India. Moeen didn't do anything significant for RCB earlier, but he has been at the centre of CSK's turnaround this IPL season...
With Malan in though, don't know whether England would be thinking of batting him at 3...


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Post by alfie Tue 28 Sep 2021, 7:06 am

king_carlos wrote:At least 606v2 is marking Mo's Test retirement the same way we did most his Test career. With an argument about whether he should have been selected.

Yes . It is strange how Moeen seems to excite such , sometimes almost "angry" exchanges. (And not just on here). With most players we see disagreements as to their worth ; but not the degree of passion that Moeen seems to stir up. Remarkable for a fellow who , himself , seems such a likeable and easy going chap.

I think it is perfectly reasonable to present arguments each way. Clearly Moeen's overall batting figures are inadequate for Test Cricket (and he was originally selected as a batsman) ; but there are some extenuating circumstances. At one stage he was doing very well , with a number of centuries over a fairly short period. Had he been left alone at say , five ; would he have done better ? (he seems to imply he fancies he might have done , in his recent interview) For my part , I have doubts. He had a couple of glaring weaknesses against good pace bowling and as teams did their homework I think they got his number : Australia really destroyed him in 2017/18 . I think he was better served down the order , playing primarily as a bowler , at which he improved greatly during his time in the Test team.

Room for each-way argument re his bowling too. Strike rate : truly excellent.  Average : fairly ordinary. Economy rate : less than desirable. All made him a match winner in some circumstances but a bit of a liability on occasions. All bowlers have their strengths and weaknesses : Moeen's skill set made him very valuable both on spinning pitches and in support of a highly effective seam battery - but less likely to be much use when either of those conditions weren't met. In short he was human rather than a Warne or a Murali...But  I reckon he was more than worth his place in the England side for most of his time , especially given the paucity of alternatives.

The trouble with that , eventually , was that  - as others have noted - he was a player whose confidence tended to be a little fragile. His batting woes spilled over into his bowling in Australia ; and when the same opponents got at him again in 2019 he was quite logically taken out of the firing line . This need not have been the end for him (his bowling had been fine in home series in 2018 and tours to Sri Lanka and West Indies) but it triggered his decision to take "time out" from the Test scene - I think a sign that that confidence was indeed shot. Some insensitive remarks from Ed Smith , along with the loss of his central contract , didn't help.

And then , of course , his comeback stalled due to an unfortunate Covid incident and the poorly planned "rotation' business in India. I think it is fair to say he has been a bit unlucky once or twice !  But his form in these recent games , and his own admission that he no longer felt he could do himself or the team justice , means that this is a good time to exit the stage.

He has also done the right thing for England in removing any doubts around his selection for The Ashes : the last thing they need in Australia is any players who are less than totally happy with being on the trip. Hope any others who are ambivalent about touring will bite the bullet and withdraw rather than travel with less than full commitment , out of a misguided feeling they are obligated to tour -  as we saw how pointless that can be in 2013 when Trott and Swann both failed to fire and failed to finish.

I shall miss Moeen as he was generally good to watch ; and he isn't too easily replaced in the England team while they are also without Stokes , even if Leach is arguably the superior bowling option these days. But I reckon his timing is best for all concerned ; and perhaps clearing his mind will pay off for him and his team in the Wt20 ...

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 28 Sep 2021, 8:36 am

JDizzle wrote:
king_carlos wrote:A shame to hear that Mo is retiring. I've always found him an incredibly likable cricketer both on and off the field.

His batting never truly flourished at Test level after his first 3 years where he scored all 5 of his Test centuries. 2016 in particular was brilliant with the bat when he scored 4 centuries and over 1000 runs in the calendar year. His technical deficiencies outside the off stump and especially to the short ball were identified after this however, they are issues that Mo never really addressed hence his batting declining at Test level. He filled every batting position from 1-9 along the way though which no doubt will not have helped him at all.

With the ball he came in as a part time spinner who batted at 3 for Worcestershire, at times Mo bowled some magnificent and match winning spells. His stats tell a good story with a fantastic strike rate but also a high economy and thus a high average. He could put such wonderful flight, dip and turn on the ball which given he came to bowling relatively late makes you wonder what might have been had he trained as a full time spinner earlier in his career.

A huge natural talent and very likable cricketer who always gave his all for the team regardless of the situation. I hope Mo still has a lot to give to England in white ball cricket.

Moeen certainly goes into the frame of the most elegant England batter I have seen - him, Bell and Trescothick would be a free flowing line up. Carlos nails it though, generally an inability to play the short ball and leave well are fatal flaws to a Test cricketer. And so it proved as his career progressed.

I read an article once about how the ECB identified Swann and Panesar as they were the two spinners by far who imparted the most revolutions on the ball in England so I would presume that was one of the key things they liked about Moeen initially. And you could certainly see that in his bowling in some of the balls he bowled. There was nice interview with him today where he said he always felt his best ball could get anyone out, and we have seen him bowl some incredible deliveries - the ball to Kohli last winter a highlight.

I was at Edgbaston for Day 4 of that Ashes test in 2019. And sometimes you just know when someone needs to be taken out of the firing line. We saw it with Ballance in 2015 and even with Sibley this year, where their records suggest they should perhaps gets more time but you can just tell they are shot.

I certainly don't blame Moeen for calling it quits now. Australia have broken many English players in normal times, and if his heart and mind just aren't in it any more then it is best for him to go now. In many ways it might do England a favour in the long run - it will force them to try and properly balance the side instead of taking the almost 'easy' way out and turning, almost unfairly, back to Moeen again to try fix the fact they can't bat.

In some ways, we might see Mo's biggest impact in the next 10 years if he has inspired any young British muslims to take up the game as that is a community that is sorely underrepresented in the cricket pyramid.

In the short time, I just hope they use him right int he upcoming WT20! With his mind cleared, and turning pitches in the UAE which will suit his bowling and more importantly his batting... Maybe this is the winter of Mo. Get him batting three.

JDizzle you make an excellent point here highlighted - one of my main gripes from the summer is that we are no closer to knowing if Jack Leach could be a lead spinner in non-sub continental conditions (ie. keep it tight in a first innings on day one, where you need 10-15 overs for 20-30 runs and maybe a wicket from your spinner), because Silverwood went back to the "safety" and "balance" of Moeen.
Not entirely sure finding that out in Australia is going to be the best scenario for Leach either but hey ho...
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Post by msp83 Tue 28 Sep 2021, 10:06 am

With no more Moeen available for test selection, they should give Leach a proper run, even if things don't work out all that great in Australia. Playing 4 seamers and no frontline spinner as they did early in the English season is just silly. Should have picked Woakes and Leach, or Moeen in those tests. Bess is distinctly mediocre at this stage of his career. I read he's trying to develop his batting and turn into an all-rounder rather than a bowler who could bat. If he succeeds, and is his bowling improves, he can be considered later.
Leach hasn't looked like he has Moeen's high range with the ball. But he can bring in some control, and play the contain role better, something Moeen wasn't really good at. Just like Moeen, with all his inconsistencies, was the best available to England for almost the entirety of his career, Leach does seem like the one for now. Give him a proper run... Of course provided he's touring Australia to start with... If he's unavailable, do they go back to Bess? Or who else? Matthew Parkinson? Has Simon Harmer become eligible for England selection?

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Post by guildfordbat Mon 04 Oct 2021, 2:30 pm

Being reported on the BBC and cricinfo that a decision is expected from the ECB this week as to whether the Ashes tour will go ahead.

To my mind, now seems too early to give a green light to the tour. Assuming a decision is made, I therefore suspect it'll be off. We'll see ....

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Post by king_carlos Mon 04 Oct 2021, 3:11 pm

Beeb wrote:An ECB statement read: "The board will decide whether the conditions are sufficient for the tour to go ahead and enable the selection of a squad befitting a series of this significance."

That's a key quote there I think. To me that sounds like many senior players are unhappy with the arrangements offered to them. Whether there can be changes over the next few days to prevent a postponement would then be the question?

Given that Australia haven't played an away Test since the 2019 Ashes over 2 years ago the comments from Tim Paine last week were especially dim. I'd guess that Paine was foolishly trying to light a fire but in reality nonsense like that won't have helped the ECB and CA's efforts in cajoling the England players into yet another bubble.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Mon 04 Oct 2021, 5:47 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Beeb wrote:An ECB statement read: "The board will decide whether the conditions are sufficient for the tour to go ahead and enable the selection of a squad befitting a series of this significance."

That's a key quote there I think. To me that sounds like many senior players are unhappy with the arrangements offered to them. Whether there can be changes over the next few days to prevent a postponement would then be the question?

Given that Australia haven't played an away Test since the 2019 Ashes over 2 years ago the comments from Tim Paine last week were especially dim. I'd guess that Paine was foolishly trying to light a fire but in reality nonsense like that won't have helped the ECB and CA's efforts in cajoling the England players into yet another bubble.

Especially stupid on the back of the postponement of the Tasmania Sheffield Shield match due to Covid concerns too.
With Australia’s current approach to lockdowns etc, i don’t think I’d be up for signing up to 2/3 months in a hotel room in the height of Australian summer for a few test matches either tbh

Sensible thing to me seems to be postpone it and find another time in the calendar to do it in 2022/23
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Post by alfie Tue 05 Oct 2021, 5:11 am

Interested to read comments above. I myself had expressed doubts about the tour some months ago ; but have recently come around to expecting it to go ahead. I may be wrong but I still suspect the ECB wants to proceed and a lot of this last minute hesitation is down to trying to win the odd extra concession and hopes of persuading the majority of England's players to sign up. Guess we will see later this week...

Couple of points . Tim Paine's comments (while not very helpful) really weren't as inflammatory as they appear when taken out of context. Read the whole interview and he is merely expressing his belief that powers above his head - and that of Joe Root - will be making the decisions ; and also reflecting the general expectation here that the tour will almost certainly proceed despite the difficulties. And it is a fairly widespread view : read also a column by the odious Malcolm Conn (who never misses a chance to have a sneer at England) and you'll see that any refusal to make the tour would come as a major shock to Australia. And cause a lot of angry responses.

I have some sympathy for CA in this. They simply can't make too many promises to the ECB because of the impossibility of getting ironclad guarantees from the government. Unlike the UK , Australia doesn't have a national government with full powers to control movements across the country. What might be promised in October could always be undermined by a sudden decision in December by one of the (increasingly twitchy) State leaders to shut down their city at a moment's notice : and the Federal Government would be powerless to intervene. Not like the mayor of Manchester could maroon the visiting Aussies in their hotel at Old Trafford - but the Premier of SA could do it here.
In truth the situation here is generally becoming more open : but (as we saw with the recent Shield game) things are still liable to rapid change. I think everything is likely to be a lot better by December/January - but having lived through months of lockdowns in Melbourne (we still have a blinking curfew here for heaven's sake , two months into our latest "one week , sharp lockdown" !) I am reluctant to suggest anything can be written in stone - or even ink.

India toured last summer without too much angst. I think England can do so too ; but I completely understand some players may be reluctant to take on another bubble wrap situation - especially straight after the World t20 show. Will mean a long period away from normal family life ; so I suppose we may see absentees. The question for management is how many , no ? We already know Stokes surely isn't coming (which is a real shame but not directly connected to this issue) but I would be very surprised if Root were to pull out.  Apart from him I don't think any single individual coming or not will really make much difference ;  so provided withdrawals are limited to one or two regulars they can presumably field a respectable squad. As the ever polite Conn says , whoever they send they're likely to get flogged so the Aussies don't care. Would love to see that shoved back down his throat by a team including a lot of young and keen players (bit like the injury ravaged Indian outfit last year) though I probably wouldn't be betting the house Smile

I really hope they do manage to sort things. Apart from anything else I can't stomach the thought of reading Aussie media stuff along the lines of  "spineless Poms chicken out of tour " for the next however many months...

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Tue 05 Oct 2021, 7:38 am

https://twitter.com/espncricinfo/status/1445260123857829888?s=21

Can barely sort out how it’s going to work for their own players, let alone English ones. What a shambles

“The Ashes starts on 8th December whether Nathan is here or not” - I presume is Paine’s reply…
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Post by GSC Tue 05 Oct 2021, 12:50 pm

Don't know how feasible it is, but would it not be sensible to hold the ashes provisionally across 2/3 venues so players are insulated from regional variations in restrictions?
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