So England’s reign as world number one has come to an end. Over this series we have been thoroughly beaten by a better team. South Africa have batted, bowled and fielded better and deserve to go to number one in the world. However I still believe that had this series been played a year ago, England would have won.
This year we have been guilty of the kind of errors our opponents had been making previously, dropped catches and run outs went a long way to costing England the third test for example. It’s difficult not to wonder what the team spirit has been like with all the bollocks surrounding KP going on. I still feel shocked and disappointed by his disgusting behaviour.
What of the future? I still believe Andrew Strauss is the right man to lead the team. There is talk about his form but it seems to have been forgotten that he scored two centuries against West Indies a couple of months back. He has always handled himself with dignity and genuinely seems to be a good bloke. Overall his record stands up there with the very best, over 7000 test runs with 21 hundreds.
James Taylor came into the side at Headingly where he scored a battling 34 but in this last match he didn’t contribute. Johnny Bairstow looked out of his depth against WI, in fact at the time I wrote “Roach takes the new ball it’s a different matter. Bell is out quickly and Bairstow comes to the wicket. To be frank the youngster is out of his depth and Roach makes mincemeat out of him. If he’s to have a test career he needs to learn to play the short ball”. Well Bairstow has gone away and improved scoring 95 and 51 against the best attack in the world! I expect he’ll be a fixture in the side for many years to come.
The test summer has come to an end, next up is a tour of India but before that the ODIs.