Posted by: tootingtrumpet | June 26, 2011

The Final Over of the Day – England vs Sri Lanka T20I

Samit Patel - slow on the turn... would you believe?

Ball One – It’s “Crisis, what crisis?” for T2o cricket, as every seat is filled for the first of England’s two T20Is of the summer. Under glowering skies after a dank morning and with Wimbledon on free-to-view television, the ECB will be pleased with the public’s response. That it costs less than 50 quid to bag a seat, also plays a part in the turnout. “Slaying the golden goose” may be a cliche, but, like many cliches, it’s a cliche because it’s true.

Ball Two – So Ian Bell cannot get into a side that finds a place for Michael Lumb? Surely Bell is not overly fatigued and he’s in the form of his life – anyone’s life – so it’s shame that the full house were deprived of the chance to see a master-batsman at work. One can’t help asking oneself whether Ian Bell would have played the shot Kieswetter played to hole out to mid-off. Two years ago – maybe. Now – never.

Ball Three – Posting close fielders for the new ball might be seen as an indulgence, but it’s amazing how often the ball flashes through an orthodox second slip position. With Morgan hitting everything else out of the middle, the edge off Lakmal that Mahela Jayawardene would have swallowed had he been standing where he has stood for years in Test cricket, proved expensive.

Ball Four – Quite why Sri Lanka, World Cup finalists just a few weeks ago, are so determined to feed KP’s and Morgan’s strengths, is hard to fathom. In the 11th over, Thisara Perera bowled five full tosses, three of which went for six. Surely an international bowler should not be as off-beam as that?

Ball Five – With only 120 balls in an innings, details really matter. Samit Patel needed to get the dive out to regain his ground, didn’t, and was gone for a duck. There was a moment in The Ashes when Jonathan Trott dived and was in by the very tightest of margins. The incident was highlighted as an example of the standards Andy Flower sets for England. Not for the first time, Samit’s standards were lower than his team’s.

Ball Six – Sanath Jayasuriya was a controversial selection for this match, but justified himself with a canny spell of bowling, revealing himself to be the only MP who is content not to spin.

Gary Naylor, whom you can tweet at @garynaylor999 and find at Cricket On Five, and



  1. Given his need to change his slacker reputation, there couldn’t have been a worse way for Samit Patel to get out. I like him as a cricketer but he needs to do something very special to convince the leagues of doubters.

    RE: Ian Bell. While there is sometimes a case for picking specialists, Bell’s current form has to make him an instant pick in any format for England.

    Ravi Bopara looked out-of-touch and low on confidence, especially in comparison with the effortless Morgan.

    • All true RS – continuity in selection must occasionally give way to common sense I feel.

      Morgan’s IPL sojourn did him no harm!

  2. Stuart Broad as captain. This’ll be fun. I would have thought England would be better off telling him he’ll be dropped if he doesn’t stop the hissy fits and berating his team mates for no good reason.

    Maybe he’s got loads of tactical nous and the respect of his team mates – I don’t watch enough to know whether or not it’s as bad as it looks. But even if he has those things, he just doesn’t have the temperament. He’ll cost England a lot of games, but the odd lucky win will be hailed as genius.

    • GM – He’ll have to change, that’s for sure. But there’s plenty of captains who didn’t look right before assuming the post – Nasser Hussain was certainly one and he did brilliantly!

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