My old man reckons Cook won’t be captain by the summer. I’ve bet £20 with him that he will. I know there’s been a bit of chat about him stepping down, but I can’t see him going before he’s done another Ashes, and his form’s not bad enough to push him out. My dad reckons his “eyes have gone”.
He was last year, but that was the first time really. He’s another I’m putting down as “one good season”, but we’ll see. The pitches in the CC were better for spin in general than they have been recently, maybe that will continue.
Rayner is another one for our ludicrously tall spinners club. 6’5" according to wikipedia
That’s what I was going to say. I’m not sure he does anything special but he gets crazy bounce.
Would be interested to see Moeen’s batting av. breakdown based on batting position. Seems like he does a lot better batting up the order, and that he’s therefore wasted at 7/8. I feel like he’s good enough to be a specialist bat and they could get away with picking another spinner, even in English conditions.
I’m pretty sure they said om TMS yesterday that seven is by far his best position. Elsewhere he’s in the 20s
this is from August, but still:
97.16: Ali’s batting average at No. 7 in Tests - the highest by far for any batsman with at least 500 runs in that position - he has made 583 runs with three hundreds and two fifties at No.7. It is also the highest he averages in any batting position. Elsewhere in the order, Moeen averages 23.97, with 839 runs from 39 innings.
Interesting, my memory is extremely faulty. That’s a huge difference as well.
I feel the same about Hameed at the moment tbh, he’s only done it over 3 matches on Indian pitches, but he can only perform on what he’s given, and he should definitely be in there for the start of the summer’s tests, injuries allowing. Jennings, let’s wait and see, but getting another top 4 batsman has been a pain in the arse for ages now.
I think Jimmy is on the way out, I’d probably play him in 2/4 or 3/5 tests, save him for the best conditions for him. Too slow if there’s no help from the pitch. Plus Wood is maybe the reverse, but fragile, so play him in the games that Anderson doesn’t.
Ali definitely has to play at the moment, offers too much with bat and ball to overlook him, and he’s probably enough spinner for most english grounds (maybe stick in rashid as well for oval and old trafford).
Buttler is doing enough to be picked on batting alone. I’d be very tempted to give him the gloves and have Bairstow as a pure batsman at 5.
Cook*, Hameed, Jennings, Root, Bairstow, Stokes, Ali, Buttler+, Woakes/Rashid/Ball/Finn, Broad, Anderson/Wood. Gives you 2 pacemen, Ali with spin, Stokes as an all rounder, plus one more proper bowler, but also gives you 8 proper batsmen (plus Woakes if you go that way).
“It is only the third time a Test side have made 400 or more in their first innings and then lost by an innings”
That’s impressive even for us.
India just unplayable in these conditions