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DaveJ

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Joined December 2017

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Of course there is a high element of randomness when the ball beats the bat so many times. No one in Australia has a particularly good technique to combat balls aimed at middle and leg and cutting away to slip.. CricViz showed that amount of seam was very high.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

India not English champions?

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

As a couple of commentators said yesterday during the Ashes, Kohli’s commitment to Test cricket has been very important for the game, given he is such a big figure in India. Some people may not like his style – his protests down the stump mike in SA were way out of line – but there was no doubting his passion and commitment. And he has the third highest win % of any captain with 25 or more Tests, behind Waugh and Ponting. Though behind in loss % to some like Lloyd, Richards, Benaud, I Chappell, Strauss, Border and Imran.

Kohli's resignation is a loss to Test cricket

Olivier not in the squad because he took a Kolpak contract in England?

Kohli's resignation is a loss to Test cricket

Head was great but it wasn’t just missing out in Sydney that kept him from a perfect 10. Wouldn’t rate him higher than Cummins. Played close to the worst shot of the series getting bowled by Root in Adelaide and was out to a poor shot for 27 in Melbourne. Pope’s technique wasn’t picked apart by Lyon. He just got out a couple of times, in Brisbane to a ball with surprising bounce, but not as bad a shot as Marnus’s dismissal to Leach when he was set. Don’t know how Boland can miss out on a perfect 10.

Heroic Head, wonderful Wood and brilliant Boland: Every player rated from the 2021-22 Ashes

Yep, much better, though these were a bit too bowler friendly overall, can become a bit of a lottery at times.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

Well everyone said it would favour England in the pink ball Tests and on more seam friendly wickets more like County cricket. It didn’t turn out that way for England, but there’s no doubt these pitches seamed more than in any other series for a long time.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

Not sure what point you’re making in relation to the point I was making.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

There’s plenty in Pope’s game to give you confidence if you’ve seen him previously including that series in England. No one has done better than him over the last four years in County cricket- averaging 69 – and he’s only 24. But he’s been poor in Australia.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

What I find interesting is that they won 3-1 in South Africa two years ago with much the same team, and beat India 4-1 at home the year before that. Pretty much the same bowling lineup. Bess – who didnt do much – instead of Leach, Sibley instead of Hameed, Denly instead of Malan. Pope, Crawley, Root, Sibley, Stokes all did well. They have really declined in the last year or so, but it seems an exaggeration to say they only have two of Test quality over the long term. Certainly four quicks of Test standard, if not first rate in Australia, plus Root, Stokes, Pope and probably probably Crawley. Buttler was of Test quality if not great. Don’t know what’s gone wrong with Pope, but he should be able to perform a lot better.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

To give a sense of how bowler friendly the conditions were, the average runs per wicket this series was 25, compared to a long term average of 31 for Ashes Tests in Australia since 1920. In other words about 25% less than the long-term average, to be taken into account when looking at scores this series. England had four quicks averaging under 27, which in most years would be a fantastic outcome. The only series with lower average runs/wicket were 1950/51, 1954/55 and 1978/79, which was affected by absence of most top Australian batsmen with World Series Cricket plus a few juicy wickets.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Pat's captaincy the 'biggest triumph of all' as England finish 's--t sandwich' tour

No injuries to SA. Didn’t have Jansen yet but had du Plessis and de Kock who were better than their replacements vs India. Most of this England team in the group that beat India 4-1 in 2018. Missing only Cook, Ali and Curran – latter two no great loss in Australia. So job is to explain recent form not asssume they are all useless as most people here are.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

But not sure selection was as big a problem as they say, especially with the batting. Crawley ahead of Hameed or Burns at the start might have helped but he had forced himself out of the team through poor form in England.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

But they do have quite a few England Lions tours.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

Agree on BBL. Pitches here this summer were most England like they’ve ever been. And conditions about the mildest ever across five tests. English county cricket should have prepared them well for seaming wickets. Pope has averaged 69 in County over the last 4 years ahead of everyone else including some very good international players. It’s not all so easy to explain.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

Yet they beat SA 3-1 in SA two years ago with mostly the same players. Against most of the Saffers who have just beaten India. Interesting.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

For all the understandable hand-wringing at home about England’s performance they might think about one thing – a very similar team won 3-1 in South Africa exactly three years ago in conditions that weren’t that different against a strong bowling attack- Rabada, Philander, Nortje, Maharaj. Leading batters were Pope, Sibley, Root, Stokes and Crawley; leading bowlers were Wood, Broad, Anderson and Stokes. So the same system that allegedly created all these problems prior to the 2019 World Cup produced a team that could achieve that great result. So maybe the players aren’t as bad as depicted. Not sure what the answer is, but maybe it’s not as simple as they all think. Can the coach make that big a difference? And they might as well stop hammering Root for batting in Brisbane. Pat would have batted too, and he can do no wrong.

UK View: 'He must resign' - Root wants to carry on but knives are out after 'ghastly', 'pathetic' surrender

It’s interesting. No-one did it before the 80s. They started doing it in Tests I believe to con/convince the umpires into thinking there had been an edge for bat-pad catches off spinners. Since then it has spread like a disease against which there seems to be no immunity. If anyone did this when I played grade cricket in the 80s they would have been asked to pipe down in future, though hardly anyone ever did it. I can’t believe any really professional sports organisations with so-called professional coaches would allow this to continue.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Here's how you can shake the nightwatchman job forever, Scotty

…Yelling at the bowler from mid-off “aim at the stumps” would be another useful addition to the repertoire!

FLEM'S VERDICT: Here's how you can shake the nightwatchman job forever, Scotty

Replay didn’t indicate clearly that Burns nicked Starc. There was a sound on Snicko but looked to be a sizeable gap between bat and ball. We never got to see hotspot. There are often sounds on Snicko when people play shots. To say it was definitely out as Warne and others were carrying on was way over the top. The slips appeal for everything so maybe there was a reason they didnt hear anything.
Boland looks to have one of the better forward defences going around. Doesn’t push the bat in front of the pad, has soft hands and a dead bat, and once or twice deflected balls downwards nicely that were moving away a bit. Ollie Pope could take a lesson – which is strange as he averages more than anyone else in county cricket over the last 4 seasons – fantastic average of 69 in 32 games – against lots of Boland-type bowlers (not as good maybe, but similar paced seamers) on seaming wickets.

DAY 2 REPORT: Wickets tumble as Cummins puts Australia on top of England

Can’t blame Usman or Warner for first innings dismissals. Balls that anyone could have got out to.

DAY 2 REPORT: Wickets tumble as Cummins puts Australia on top of England

That’s because there has been a huge amount of seam movement this summer, way more than previous years.

DAY 2 REPORT: Wickets tumble as Cummins puts Australia on top of England

Don’t think his batting is in a general slump. He’s been pretty good this series and first innings in Adelaide was brilliant. Maybe worried about this game. Looked like a clanger, though as suggested in a second comment I wrote above, I reckon there’s a good chance someone yelling Catch! could have contributed to him snatching at it.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Here's how you can shake the nightwatchman job forever, Scotty

Actually, I think Warner’s drop could well have been an example of someone yelling Catch! and costing a wicket. Watching the replay there was a loud yell of Catch! as it’s heading towards Warner. The ONLY thing that yelling Catch! can do when the ball is heading towards a fielder at slips or in the ring is make them snatch at the ball, which looked like what Warner may have done. Complete amateur hour, even though this disease has become endemic at all levels of cricket. It’s hardly excusable for catches on the boundary too, and I was disappointed to see Cameron Green yelling Catch! when the ball was heading to Boland at fine leg. They’re not really saying “Look out, there’s a ball coming you’re way” but “I want you to catch the ball” or “You’d better catch the ball or I’ll stamp my liddle foot and run home.”

FLEM'S VERDICT: Here's how you can shake the nightwatchman job forever, Scotty

That slips catching was really disappointing. Real amateur hour spacing – would be interesting to know their reasons. “Mitchell Starc wasn’t at his best, but he’s a pink-ball superstar, so he still got a three-for.” No, Starc vs Boland was an excellent example of how luck can affect bowling figures, just as it can determine the timing of batting dismissals from innings to innings. Starc got two wickets from one bad ball and a leg side strangle, and didn’t do much off the wicket . Boland had two catches dropped and beat the bat time and again.

FLEM'S VERDICT: Here's how you can shake the nightwatchman job forever, Scotty

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