There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby sussexpob » Sun Sep 10, 2017 10:30 pm

Essentially, the series he had was good enough to get more tests.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby westoelad » Sun Sep 10, 2017 10:39 pm

sussexpob wrote:Of course, someone like Steve Smith relys entirely on his hand eye coordination, and he isnt bad.

I am about 30-70 in favour that he doesnt play the end of the series, but apart from the fact I wouldnt have dropped Robson and gave him another 10 tests (and subsequently want ENG to try him again) there is no one. I think they will take Hameed, but he needs to find longer term form.

Certainly there's an argument for Robson but with Angus Fraser an England selector there appears to be an issue about his recall.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby bigfluffylemon » Sun Sep 10, 2017 11:49 pm

sussexpob wrote:Stoneman for me looks like a player who's feet take a while to get moving. Especially early in his innings, he likes to plant his feet before delivery, and rely on his hands a lot. He might struggle with extra bounce and accuracy of Australia, playing away from his pad. When he settles, he picks up the ball better, has decent hand-eye coordination to pick up the ball. But always looks like a vulnerable player early in the innings.


I think there are a lot of players to whom that could be applied. You mention Smith - Warner too, up to a point. Just about any batsman is vulnerable early on.

I'd also be in favour of taking Robson. Not only did he do as well as anyone as an opening partner for Cook, he also has experience on Australian pitches. He could potentially bat at 3.

I think they will take Hameed if he makes late season runs. I am not sure it would be a good idea.

Something is very wrong in the England test set up at the moment. We haven't found any new batsmen who've established themselves in the side since 2013 (Bairstow arguably, since he debuted in 2013 but didn't really make the place his own until 2015). On the other hand, there seems a steady stream of limited overs talent that has given England one of the best ODI batting line-ups in the world. Perhaps I've answered my own question - we're so keen now on producing power hitters that we aren't coming up with batsmen with the discipline or the patience to play high quality bowling in the long form.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby westoelad » Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:14 am

bigfluffylemon wrote:
sussexpob wrote:Stoneman for me looks like a player who's feet take a while to get moving. Especially early in his innings, he likes to plant his feet before delivery, and rely on his hands a lot. He might struggle with extra bounce and accuracy of Australia, playing away from his pad. When he settles, he picks up the ball better, has decent hand-eye coordination to pick up the ball. But always looks like a vulnerable player early in the innings.


I think there are a lot of players to whom that could be applied. You mention Smith - Warner too, up to a point. Just about any batsman is vulnerable early on.

I'd also be in favour of taking Robson. Not only did he do as well as anyone as an opening partner for Cook, he also has experience on Australian pitches. He could potentially bat at 3.

I think they will take Hameed if he makes late season runs. I am not sure it would be a good idea.

Something is very wrong in the England test set up at the moment. We haven't found any new batsmen who've established themselves in the side since 2013 (Bairstow arguably, since he debuted in 2013 but didn't really make the place his own until 2015). On the other hand, there seems a steady stream of limited overs talent that has given England one of the best ODI batting line-ups in the world. Perhaps I've answered my own question - we're so keen now on producing power hitters that we aren't coming up with batsmen with the discipline or the patience to play high quality bowling in the long form.

And how much is that due to playing red ball cricket only in Spring and Autumn?
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Mon Sep 11, 2017 8:38 am

Good point. I wonder if the demise of the Lions hasn't helped in identifying who can step up.

Kevin Shine is currently taking over bowling coach duties. He didn't have a happy time about ten years ago when his tenure coincided with some terrible bowling form (Anderson and Harmison come to mind) and he was quickly replaced by Alan Donald.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby sussexpob » Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:09 am

I dont personally think its a simple case of batters not having the required personality. I am sure it factors in, dont get me wrong, but the point I was making in drawing a comparison between Stoneman and Smith was that they are both reliant on hand doing in the work, and not the feet. That is an increasingly prevalent situation in all culture of cricket, and I do think that is a result of more limited overs styles.

I tend to think batsman of more classic distinctions are about. ABDV is one, Kohli can be quite classic with some strokes off the front foot. Yet, I think players nowadays have had to adapt techniques to stroke make off all possible scenarios, and the key difference is that rather than move the feet to the pitch of the ball, a lot of players nowadays look to set themselves into a balanced generic stance before the ball pitches, and to react to the ball by relying on quick hands, and hand-eye coordination to do the work. Smith likes to stand quite upright before the ball is delivered, sets his body into position, and throws his hands through the line. Its all about having a good, set position from which to play a range of shots from with minimal movement of the feet.

When the ball swings, that can lead to disaster. Probably notable that Stoneman averages 31 in Durham according to the stats I dug up, he struggles more in those conditions and makes more runs on the road it seems. As an opener, its much harder to play that way because in any conditions, you are getting the worst of it. And I am not sure a batter from England playing at home a lot is going to survive with that style. In 4 outs, hes played round the swinging ball twice, not getting his body and hands into position in time. I think it takes a special talent, very quick hands, extra special eye sight and co-ordination, to play with that limited footwork. I am not sure Stoneman falls into that category. Time will tell I guess.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby sussexpob » Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:18 am

Warner is another player, as you mention. I think he is a special case though, people are happy to dismiss him as a slugger, but he does at times have incredible sense of touch in his hands. And he must have amazing core strength and arm strength, because the way he is able to set his feet and plant his weight downwards, keep his head steady, while wrapping his arms and turning through the line... thats not something anyone can do. Its almost like a professional golf swing, hes set up so that his stance is open to anything that comes across him on the off stump or wider, he can free his arms outwards to play into the off side, but when you target his middle and leg stump, he somehow is able to rotate from the same position around his body. Quite how he does it with so much power is anyones guess. He also has quick feet to balls pitched inside the body, when he reads the length he takes a step back and to his leg side, and then opens up the body and hits through the line.

Like I said above, it takes special levels of skill to execute those type of shots.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby westoelad » Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:52 pm

Arthur Crabtree wrote:Good point. I wonder if the demise of the Lions hasn't helped in identifying who can step up.

Kevin Shine is currently taking over bowling coach duties. He didn't have a happy time about ten years ago when his tenure coincided with some terrible bowling form (Anderson and Harmison come to mind) and he was quickly replaced by Alan Donald.

Bayliss is quoted in the Times that a variety of locums I.e. Silverwood, Jon Lewis, Chapple and Welch will share the bowling coaching duties for the coming ODIs and, incredibly, they're looking for an Aussie State coach to do the duties on the Ashes tour. They won't appoint full time
until next summer. It seems then that Shine has been ruled out and suggests to me that whoever they have in mind is under contract elsewhere and not available until next year.
He also said the Ashes squad will be limited to those who've played test cricket in the past 12-18 month. That would rule out Robson or Lyth and confine to Hameed, Jennings and Ballance as the extra batsmen.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby bigfluffylemon » Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:11 pm

Good analysis, sussex.

With Smith, I can't believe his coordination and reaction time. He always looks to me to be a prime candidate for lbw, especially early, but he just reacts too quickly, even when playing across the line. I do wonder though if a technique based on such coordination is doomed to have a shorter lifespan than a more classical player. Smith's only 28, so plenty of time yet, but one wonders if the reaction time starts to fade, even by a fraction of a second, might make all the difference between a run machine and constant early dismissals. Just a thought.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:36 pm

The most like that must be Graeme Smith (though for a time Hoggard did get him lbw for fun) but so often he invited the lbw, but fed off the attempt.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby sussexpob » Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:12 pm

Virender Sehwag relied a lot on hands over footwork, and he's a good example of a player who turned 31/32 odd and started to fall off a cliff. I think he started having a well noted decrease in his level of eyesight, and that was it, he could barely hit a ball by when he came to England in 2011. Aside from a decent series after, he was well under par after that. I think it is a tougher technique to maintain when you are both out of form, or as you get older and a bit slower.

As for Graeme Smith, he actually has a very similar style to Westley, in that (from what I have seen anyway) they both have a closed grip on the bat, and both are quite bottom hand dominant (Smith was extremely bottom handed, Westley not so much). The worry for Westley is that he has shown already classic signs of the lack of control that comes with that style of grip, as such a style will always generally mean you kill balls that drift into the legs, but lead to a noticeable lack of control playing into the offside. Although Westley has played some killer drives so far, he has also had the textbook control problems outside his off when attacking.

Of course, AC was right, as Smith did have the type of technique I alluded to. Apart from his initial trigger movement of coming back and across his stumps, as the bowler releases the ball he freezes in place and has his foot planted. It was that closed grip that negated the lbw, like others who bat like that, he is set up to play into the onside. In fact, in his technical unorthodox approach, he allowed himself to dominate the on side so much, you could crowd people all around the bat but he maintained enough control to find gaps.

I have been negative about Smith, but one area I will give him is his play against spin, and the fact he probably maximised his technique by finding a way to play the ball late. Here is where the real crux is; ability to playing late. Smith hung on the back foot and had the physically power in his body to use that closed face backlift that no one would try ever to emulate. But it worked for him. He could play defensive strokes away from his body because he read the ball well onto the bat when the ball moved. Ok, when the ball really swings the odds on him performing cut much more than others, but that ability to play at the very last conceivable moment turned what was a terrible technique, into a successful and functional one( and the drop catches too).

I go back to Warner, but he has one shot he plays reguarly where he shapes to cow corner smash it, but when he senses the ball isnt there he is able to stop his hands and flick it over fine leg. He is a player that, when on form, can play some strokes incredibly late.

I guess the conclusion is,as long as you form a stance as the ball comes where you are static, head still and watching the ball, then as long as you have the speed in the hands to allow you to watch the ball that fraction of a second more, your hands can move into more positions and make up for a lack of footwork.

Bringing it back to topic though, does Stoneman or Westley have those unique skills? I doubt ut
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby greyblazer » Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:27 pm

Haseeb needs to be picked.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby sussexpob » Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:45 pm

two fifties in 12 championship games isnt the type of form that suggests hes going to do that well
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby greyblazer » Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:22 pm

Jennings was in form during the early season and flopped. Haseeb at his worst is still better compared to the players I have seen who have got the opportunity to play for England in the recent past.
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Re: There may be troubles ahead: England selection issues.

Postby Slipstream » Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:35 pm

greyblazer wrote:Jennings was in form during the early season and flopped. Haseeb at his worst is still better compared to the players I have seen who have got the opportunity to play for England in the recent past.


Agreed.

Stokes will persuade Bayliss to take Jennings and Hameed will miss out. When there was a doubt about Cook's fitness recently, Jennings was back in the picture again.
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