England from 526 to 1000.

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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby ianp1970 » Tue Oct 16, 2018 7:44 pm

Arthur Crabtree wrote:I remember watching the debut of Darren Gough 1994 and being jerked from my gloomy reverie into the consciousness that I was witnessing the debut of the first genuinely exciting pace bowler since Ian Botham in 1977.


I seem to remember watching TV highlights from his debut where they showed the entire first over 'off the reel' as it was so good - could be mistaken though :hmmm

I was definitely at the Oval in the mid-90's when he opened an ODI with 3 successive maidens :gunOur first wicket was a run-out and Atherton scored a century in a relatively comfortable victory :o

Gough was a beacon amidst mediocrity for most of his international career...

PS: Great series AC :thumb
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby sussexpob » Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:56 pm

Arthur Crabtree wrote:Cook picked up nine wickets at Trent Bridge as England wrapped up the series and was named Player of the Match. In the winter he starred in England's 1-0 defeat in Pakistan and after a year in international cricket had 35 wickets in six Tests at 26.1. He would win a further nine caps, taking 17 wickets at 45.5. He faded away. Other spinners would come in and debut in his place, like Eddie Hemmings, and Edmonds and Emburey would return again and again. But none of them would touch Nick Cook in his first year of Test cricket and no one would provoke similar optimism, however brief, until the debut of Phil Tufnell at the MCG in 1990.


Was it Cook who famously got the yips, or was that someone else?

Gough was a beacon amidst mediocrity for most of his international career...


Gough is probably the hardest English cricketer to judge in my lifetime, because its hard to really under-estimate what he meant to the English fans/team in his pomp, but also hard to forget the pretty consistent annoyance with him not managing to fulfill his massive potential a lot of the time. He averaged 30 for much of his 90s stint Id have to guess, and in those days, only a handful of bats maintained 50 averages, and anything over 40 was world class, so it wasnt exactly a wonderful bowling average. Just from the top of my head, the Prasads of the era were rated as utterly terrible with averages in the 35 zone.

Gough's faults seem to be symptoms of this era's struggles; he was overweight, which lead to problems with breaking down. He was never challenged or managed in a way that developed him. He was one-dimensional, and when the ball didnt reverse or conventionally swing, his answer was to pitch the ball up further and further, which often resulted in his econ rate going sky high. He tried adaptations and variations, but when a partnership developed, he threw whole overs of slower balls down, never really using pace variations in a clever way. At the time, it was enough to be patchy, the English cricketing psyche seemed geared towards that. He started as a skillful batter with a few shots, who scored a few 50s quickly, and ended as a trick pony who tried to smack every ball into the stands.... yet the odd slogged 20 got the crowds going, and the site of him smashing the stumps with a wicked yorker gave us all a thrill.

This lack of professionalism seemed to hold back a lot of bowlers, mixed with selectors who sharpened the axes as soon as a bowler sent down a bad ball. Caddick got dropped so many times, you could see every boundary he gave away, a little part of his fragile confidence died. Gus Fraser was a solid pace bowler, but he was always injured, no one seeming to put together the string of injuries might be related to the fact he looked the least athletic person ever to play professional sport. How many times did Dominic Cork bowl in swinging conditions, and rather than bowl to good lengths and with his notable ability to move the ball, instead snarled and swore at batsman, while sending down mid track bouncers in the low 70 mphs?

I think the total lack of coaching/selecting common sense can be highlighted by a comment I once read by Alan Mullaly (I seen David Lloyd once tell it as an anecdote too, so its indisputably true) ..... after a season where he'd been a top county performer, he went on the late 90s Ashes tour. In a team meeting, Lloyd asked for input before the first test about how to bowl; Gough providing a four letter barrage about how they should just knock the Aussies out, a answer he kept on repeating everytime someone spoke..... Mullaly eventually put his hand up to give his view, and at this point Lloyd seemed puzzled..... despite being one test into the series, and having multiple games, apparently David Lloyd hadnt even noticed Alan was on the tour, and was confused by him being there :panic ... which leads to the question of how much actual coaching, interaction and support these players were getting. To not even know you picked a guy, and not even notice him being around.... well, its frankly bizarre, and its no wonder in such an environment, we were utterly rubbish.

Gough always looked better in the short period he played under Hussain and Fletcher, and Caddick also excelled at this period, forming a very good new ball attack in the first year, in 2000. You got the feeling under a proper coach with good ideas, and a good work ethic, a lot more players would have excelled.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:06 pm

sussexpob wrote:
Was it Cook who famously got the yips, or was that someone else?



I think Keith Medlycott was most famous for that. Retired at 26. Toured with Gooch's heroes of 1989 to the Caribbean but didn't play.
Last edited by Arthur Crabtree on Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby sussexpob » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:09 pm

Arthur Crabtree wrote:
sussexpob wrote:
Was it Cook who famously got the yips, or was that someone else?



I think Keith Medleycott was most famous for that.


Ill take your word for it. I know it was some 80s spinner for England, touted as a very decent bowler, but just as he came into international recognition, he developed a problem with being able to let go of the ball, and had to retire.

May have actually been yourself who told me that, on these boards.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:12 pm

From wiki:

At the end of 1991, Medlycott was forced into premature retirement at the age of 26 due to developing a tendency to fail to let go of the ball when bowling, known as the bowling "yips".


Probably have been others but I think he's most closely remembered for it.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:30 pm

Good post about Goughie by the way. I agree with that. Particularly Gough's weight which can't have helped with injury and stamina. It took him 2-3 overs to get up to full speed later on in his career and he couldn't bowl long effective spells so he had few overs at his most dangerous. He bowled a bit more pragmatically towards the end of the career, more defensively when there was no swing. I remember him telling off an interviewer who complained he wasn't bowling fuller on a flat pitch.

Nevertheless, he was England's first proper decent fast bowler to debut for maybe 25 years (Botham was more fast medium) and he had a bit of (on field) charisma to go with it. And he came into the side (from memory with White and Rhodes) as early Ray Illingworth picks, with absolutely no hype at all. The sight of him coming in to bowl on his debut, quick, cocky and with a great action, was unexpected and a bit uplifting.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby sussexpob » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:54 pm

If I was given a time machine, and a chance to bring back any English bowler from my lifetime into the modern era, I'd without question have picked Andy Caddick. I'd be convinced given an uninterpreted start in the national team, and with the right confidence and instruction, he'd have been an all time great; he had everything, bounce, good pace, swing, seam.... when he was on song and had belief, he was unplayable at times.

I remember him being interviewed by Channel 4 coverage in a pub a few years back, and the old cliche questions came out..... "what made you a team player", "what changed your attitude", etc etc..... his answer was pretty basic.... Duncan Fletcher told him to stop being afraid of pitching the ball fuller, and to stop hanging back short on defensive lines. Took a decent coach one conversation to change his career, and he was arguably past his best physically at that point.

Instead successive terrible coaches before this had simply disregarded him as a anti-social mute. I think David Lloyd called him a nerd once, simply because he asked the coach for input on his bowling. Turns out, he was just a bit of shy type, and coaches doing a bad job created the narrative of him being problematic to explain their own short falls in the job.

20 year old, Fletcher in charge, what could have been.....
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:59 pm

I always mention this regarding Caddick but... I opened Steve Waugh's mammoth autobiography in a bookshop and randomly selected a page where Waugh said Caddick was as good a bowler as GMcG, but for the psychology.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:04 pm

Just checked the stats for Caddick before and after Duncan... and they're exactly the same!

Still, you might expect a tailing off at the end, which didn't happen. In fact he ended on a high.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Gingerfinch » Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:19 pm

I think I read somewhere that Cook did get the yips. ironically he always looked to have a smooth action.

Good posts Arthur.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:00 am

Thanks for the response chaps.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/series/1692 ... nd-1983-84

Should have had this one in the worst England Test list. 1984 was a pretty bad year.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Fri Oct 19, 2018 2:16 pm

December 12-15, 1984: Delhi. England beat India by 8 wickets.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/series/1688 ... ia-1984-85

In 1984, rather than ease into their slump with the reluctance of a sickly child at the municipal baths, England plummeted with the sudden vertiginous drop of a tanned Mexican diving off a cliff at Acapulco. They began the year losing series for the first time ever in both New Zealand, where they were outclassed, and Pakistan. David Gower replaced Bob Willis as captain for the 5-0 whitewash defeat that summer to the West Indies, and England had the worst of their draw with Sri Lanka in an end of season game at Lord's where their inexperienced guests compiled 491-7 declared.

England were badly managed, poorly led and indisciplined off the pitch, the latter factor apparently less evident when Ian Botham was missing with injury, as he so often was when England were in Asia. And as he was for the winter tour of India in 1984-85. However... if ever there was a good time to tour India, this was it. They had won only one series in the whole of the eighties, home or away- at home to England in 1981.

And so India won the first Test in Mumbai thanks to 12 wickets from eighteen year old legspinner Laxman Sivaramakrishnan winning his second cap.

With the 13 Tests of 1984 having tallied eight defeats and no wins, England went to the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi 1-0 behind. Traditionally when a side went one down in India back then, the press would claim the call went out to the ground staff around the country to prepare a sequence of draw assured roads. Credit then to England for coming back from a run of results which could hardly have been worse, in such unlikely circumstances. Sivaramakrishnan took another six wickets in England's first innings, but the tourists managed a decent lead, thanks to 160 in his second Test for Tim Robinson and a cautious 74 for Paul Downton. Phil Edmonds and Pat Pocock were the spinners on that tour and match winners with the ball in Delhi.

Everyone remembers the victory in Chennai after New Year which gave England a lead that they would hold onto in Kanpur. At the Chepauk, Gatting and Fowler made double tons and Neil Foster took 11 wickets. It is one of the legendary England Tests in Asia. But the win to level the series in the capital, surrounded by civil unrest after the recent assassination of Indira Gandhi, was even less expected. England had been hopeless against the Indian spinners in the first game but they responded well, particularly through Robinson's maiden Test ton. Rarely for the time, they kept faith in the eleven who lost the previous Test.

In the press, the recently retired Geoff Boycott had commented that only a mad man would give England a chance in India. And well, cricket does sometimes throw up crazy outlier results like this. It's one of the wonders of the game.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Thu Nov 01, 2018 1:27 pm

August 15-20, 1985: Edgbaston. England beat Australia by an innings and 118 runs.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/series/1685 ... gland-1985

The great story arc of 1980s cricket was the fall and rise of the Australian Test team, and 1985 found them about half way between the peak eras of the Chappells and the Waughs. It's always interesting to note how many key players in their resurgence were present in the long lean years between. Of course there was Allan Border, who typically had a magnificent series in their Ashes loss of 1985, but McDermott (who took 30 wickets) and David Boon toured. And Geoff Lawson who survived to win the Ashes again in better times.

So while England were in a decline of their own, they were still good enough to regain the Ashes. There were too many names in the touring party that are suggestive of the great Australian cricketing depression. Geoff Wood, and Andrew Hilditch opened together in all but one Test but struggled badly. Simon O'Donnell and Greg Ritchie were key selections that misfired.

When I think of the hot summer of 1985, I think of England compiling huge totals in the sunshine, and David Gower (who made 732 runs in the six Tests) frequently delivering that **** you of the time by batting in a floppy hat. Mike Gatting had a good series and Tim Robinson promised a great deal which would never be delivered. But my main memory was the emergence of the first putative new Ian Botham. The real thing actually had a good series taking 31 wickets, but his swing had gone and he had lost pace and swing was kryptonite to the Aussies, particularly a poor batting side. The first in a long line of new Bothams was made in his image, with a fat backside, a mullet and a moustache, and he swung the ball away from the bat, though a touch slower than Beefy in his pomp.

This was the Kent allrounder Richard Ellison who was recalled for the fourth Test in Birmingham and took 6-77 and 4-27 to barely any resistance on a batting pitch where Gower made 215, Robinson 148, and Gatting 100*. He seized the deadlocked series thrillingly in the second innings and England bowled the tourists to 37-5, which I watched in a department store in Hull City Centre among a gathering crowd of cricket fans.

Ellison took seven wickets at the Oval in another innings victory, again on a parched, flat track. But he took the Botham tribute a step too far and the rest of his career was ruined by back injuries. He took five wickets the next winter in Jamaica but left the stage after an innocuous performance against India in 1986. Without the swing, he offered no threat and no pace, which was something Botham overcame for a time. Ellison had a good county career, but at international level he came and went in 11 Tests taking 35 wickets at a touch under 30. It was over in a couple of years, but his great summer of 1985 though brief, was gloriously vivid and his recall won the Ashes.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Gingerfinch » Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:05 pm

Hooker Hilditch.

That Aussie side was damn average. Lawson was decent. Never knew why he had such a long run up? McDermott looked promising but maybe looked better, being in a poor bowling set up.
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Re: England from 526 to 1000.

Postby Arthur Crabtree » Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:26 pm

Apparently Hilditch got a ton in that series which I can hardly imagine happening. The only ton from one of their openers.

Him and Graeme Wood used to run each other out quite often.
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