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October 2009
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Sam Collins: England must get the balance right in South Africa

October 14th, 2009 by Sam Collins in England, South Africa, Test cricket


For a while I’ve had serious doubts about the balance of this England team without Andrew Flintoff. Before I could put them to paper, Shane Warne beat me to it this morning.

Warney was in typically uncompromising form as he laid into England’s plans to bat Stuart Broad at No.7 against South Africa this winter. Broad is, for Warne, “a decent bowler and a reasonable batsman, just not an international allrounder”. Often caricatured as a provocative Aussie in his Times column, Warne is as adept at pinpointing English weakness in print as he was from 22 yards.

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Posted in England, South Africa, Test cricket | 8 Comments »

Edward Craig: Keep your eye on the ball

October 14th, 2009 by Edward Craig in Champions League

As Mike Yardy and Ed Joyce were rebuilding Sussex’s innings in their second match of the Champions League at Delhi – pushing, nurdling, shoving like the workman they needed to be, it was very easy for the mind and the eye to wander to the cheerleaders who decorate the ground and inspire the crowd.

It is the usual cheerleading stuff – pom-pom waving, legs kicking, hips waggling and shaking – and everyone loves it. They leap onto their podiums at any opportunity: wicket, run, between overs, as the batsman is re-marking his guard and keep everyone alive and moving.

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Posted in Champions League | 3 Comments »

John Stern: England need quality not quantity

October 14th, 2009 by John Stern in County cricket, England


At some point, you’d like to think people will listen. Yesterday on this site, the Sussex coach Mark Robinson voiced the concerns of most of his peers about the volume of county cricket. In this month’s Wisden Cricketer, Sean Morris, of the Professional Cricketers’ Association, urged a less-is-more attitude.

And in the London Evening Standard yesterday Andrew Strauss was saying exactly the same thing. In fact he went further, saying that we need overseas players because otherwise county cricket – with 18 teams – wouldn’t be strong enough and that actually fewer counties would be a good idea. Of course his diplomatic cop-out was “we have to work with what we’ve got”.

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Posted in County cricket, England | 13 Comments »

Edward Craig: Life’s a pitch

October 14th, 2009 by Edward Craig in Champions League

Myself and Jesse Hogan, an Australian journalist who writes for the Melbourne Age (you’d never have guessed from the name), decide to chance our luck and lives by going for a walk round the square at the Faroz Shah Kotla stadium in Delhi.

We pass the armed guards in blue, then the armed guards in brown, then the security officers with a big ‘24’ written on their fronts  – these are the really officious ones. We squeeze between the advertising boards, looking as though we are meant to be there, and stride across the outfield to have a look at the pitch, as though we’ve been doing it all our lives.

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Posted in Champions League | 1 Comment »

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