Sunday, 12 July 2020

Cricket returns!

One of the most disturbing things about this most surreal spring has been the lack of cricket but with things apparently improving the test series against West Indies was rearranged and all of a sudden it was here, albeit played without fans.

It was a surprise that Stuart Broad was left out of the eleven, I find it bizarre that a man with 485 test wickets can be left out in home conditions.  Thinking back to the first test in Barbados last year when the same player was left out and England were hammered.  At the time I described this non selection as arrogant and after two days of this test match I was thinking the same.

To be fair England's 204 on first innings was not enough and the deficit of 114 could have been much worse.  This was down to poor batting from England and good bowling by Jason Holder in particular.  I still think had Broad played then West Indies would have found scoring much more difficult.

England's second innings was much better with good scores from all of the top order, newcomers Sibley and Crawley in particular.  Just when England were threatening to take the game away West Indies fought back and ripped through the middle order.

The last day, Archer scored some valuable runs and England set West Indies 200 to win.  I'd have backed the home team at this point, especially after Archer had helped reduced WI to 27/3 but the middle order got stuck in. There was a bit of a wobble towards the end but West Indies hung on to deservedly win by 4 wickets.

Post mortem.  Broad should have played ahead of Wood in this game, it's fucking obvious really, another arrogant selection.  Wood is great but pick horses for courses, this was Southampton not Sydney.

Joe Denly is a very likable character but has played fifteen tests and not improved, this must be his last test.  I love watching Joss Buttler bat but he too has not delivered in test cricket.  We keep being told he's a 'game changer' but I can't ever remember him changing a game?  It's about time Ben Foakes got another chance.

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