September 2009
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Sam Collins: Championship review 2009, the batsmen

September 29th, 2009 by Sam Collins in County cricket, England


Enough. The domestic season is over. Kent and Essex are up, Sussex are down, Worcestershire appear out and everyone else is off for a long kip.

But quickly, before everyone packs up, lets put a quick England-focused filter over the end of season averages from the County Championship.

Today, the batting.

The Good

1st Mark Ramprakash (Surrey) – 1350 runs @ 90.  It’s all been said before.

3rd Jonathan Trott (Warwickshire) – 1207 runs @ 80.05. Demanded his England call-up with his South African accent, consistent form, and excellent conversion rate: five hundreds to four fifties.

4th Michael Di Venuto (Durham) – Of course you need bowling firepower to win the Championship, but having a guy who scores 1,600 runs at 80 doesn’t hurt. Among the other non-Brits Chris Rogers (1461 @ 73.05) and Martin van Jaarsveld (1475 @ 70.23) also had excellent seasons.

5th Marcus Trescothick (Somerset) – 1817 runs @ 75.7. More runs than anyone else in a summer in which the whole country wished things were different.

8th Chris Read (Nottinghamshire) – 1203 runs @ 75.18. It seems that whatever Read does his England career is over. He leads an impressive cast of run-scoring wicketkeepers with England pretensions. Nic Pothas is 9th (816 runs @ 74), Craig Kieswetter 17th (1242 runs @ 59.14) and Geraint Jones 28th (1291 runs @ 51.64). Yet closer to Matt Prior’s heels than all of them at the moment, at least in one-day cricket, is Surrey new-boy Steven Davies, 68th with 952 runs @ 39.66.

The England Hopefuls

12th Michael Carberry (Hampshire) – 1251 runs @ 69.5. Frightening consistency. A pair against Sussex in early June was the only Championship match in which he failed to reach fifty and sparked a run of three hundreds and a double-century in four matches.

14th James Taylor (Leicestershire) – 1184 runs @ 65.77. Only 19, playing for a team at the very bottom of the system, and still good enough to score over 1,000 runs and poll almost twice as many votes as Stuart Broad to be the Cricket Writers’ Club young player of the year. Only six past winners have not gone on to play for England.

25th Rob Key (Kent) – 1145 runs @ 54.52. A run-glut in July masked an appalling start to the season. An opportunity missed to put real pressure on Alastair Cook.

34th Arul Suppiah (Somerset) – 1201 runs @ 48.04. Marcus Trescothick’s opening partner has a sound technique and has attracted good reviews from Taunton. At a time when Alastair Cook is struggling and alternatives are few he is on the rise.

Must do better

43rd James Hildreth (Somerset) – 934 runs @44.47. Perennially promising. Started the season with an unbeaten triple-hundred and a load of headlines but managed just one more century in 15 matches and failed to pass fifty in the last five.

59th Joe Denly (Kent) – 542 runs @ 41.69. Nine matches, five single-figure scores, three hundreds and a single fifty. We know all about his talent but the stats suggest a poor starter who can lose concentration – none of his centuries were ‘big’ ones. Has every shot there is, plays with a thrillingly straight bat but needs to learn to be as decisive in defence as he is in attack. When he has that, expect him to be another Vaughan or Trescothick – a top-order Test star for England who comes with a surprisingly low first-class average. But he better hurry up.

131st Samit Patel (Nottinghamshire) – 712 runs @ 30.95. Failed to score a hundred all season. Clearly affected by his weight-related problems with England, needs to re-focus quickly.

150th Stephen Moore (Worcestershire) – 738 runs @ 27.33. “Stephen Moore is bracing himself for the speculation that will surround his possible call-up to the Ashes squad. Never has Stephen been more ready for full England Test honors (sic). With injuries rife, Bell severely lacking in form and Ravi Bopara proving vulnerable, there is surely no one else who has stated there (sic) claim for a spot with such distinction and, most importantly, form.”
A statement from Moore’s management company after Kevin Pietersen’s withdrawal from the Ashes. Despite a Lions hundred against Australia, on this season’s form Moore’s agent is more likely to win Countdown than his client is to play for England.

171st Eoin Morgan (Middlesex) – 412 runs @ 24.23. Showing how good he is in South Africa at the moment, but a miserable Championship season, albeit one interrupted by stop-start involvement with England. Has already been likened to Neil Fairbrother but needs a strong first-class season next year to avoid being pigeon-holed in the same way.

England qualified batsmen with over 1000 Championship runs (20)

Ramprakash, Trott, Trescothick, Read, Carberry, Taylor, Chris Nash (Sussex, 1298 @ 59), Usman Afzaal (Surrey, 1269 @57.68), Key, Jimmy Adams (Hampshire, 1280 @ 53.33), Jones, Jamie Dalrymple (Glamorgan, 1009 @50.45), Suppiah, Alex Gidman (Gloucs, 1028 @44.69), Gareth Rees (Glamorgan, 1028 @ 44.69), Stephen Peters (Worcs, 1050 @ 43.75), Joe Sayers (Yorkshire, 1103 @ 42.42), Garry Park (Derbyshire, 1059 @ 42.36), Michael Yardy (Sussex, 1046 @41.84), Daryl Mitchell (Worcs, 1022 @34.06)

Tomorrow – the bowlers

Sam Collins is website editor of

Posted in County cricket, England | 1 Comment »

One Response to “Sam Collins: Championship review 2009, the batsmen”

  1.   Jackie says:

    If Ian Bell hadn’t been called up for England duty he would have passed 1000 runs.

    Also no distinction between 1st and 2nd Division?

    The renowned flat pitches of Somerset must have contributed to Trescothick’s runfest.

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