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The Roar

Nathan Hall

Roar Pro

Joined September 2020









True, to be honest you could say the same about Dilshan and Boycott (who had like 16 opening partners).

Top ten Test opening pairs in history


Food for thought: How to make the Ashes competitive right now

I acknowledge I made a mistake here by having 5 overseas players, to rectify it I would replace Jamieson with Vijay Shankar who happens to share the initials with my closest of friends who happens to be an RCB fan.

Predicting Royal Challengers Bangalore’s XI after the 2022 IPL auction

Well , then David Warner would have been my opener instead of Karunaratne if I solely used the rankings. That being said , the ICC rankings were a factor for me in selecting players with similar numbers but I have looked primary at 2021 numbers in isolation (also even specialised numbers against quality opposition).

The best Test cricket XI of 2021

Agreed, will take note of it next time!

The best Test cricket XI of 2021

Yes, tottally concede my mistake! Perhpas I confused Tim Southee’s vice captaincy of T20Is with Tests. Of course, there were other players who could have easily made the list- it is simply my opinion. I also looked at averages and rankings , which helped me pick my players as most players that you mention were similarly good in terms of this years numbers.

The best Test cricket XI of 2021

Alright, if you want to be pragmatic and challenge my opinion, then here it is. Your graph, as you suggested is valid for Tests and this (opinionated) list was purely looking at the T20Is in the year 2021. If you actually check my Test list, you will find that I have chosen Rishabh Pant as my designated keeper because like you I agree that Butler is a mediocre red ball keeper (and I chose Pant there primary due to his batting at no 6/7).

When it comes to solely wicketkeeping , the best stat (even if not ideal) to compare would be the Dismissals/innings- Jos Butler in T20I’s is at 0.928 and Mohammed Rizwan is at 0.827. What that tells you is they are both equally potent keepers, but based solely on their 2021 T20I performance, Butler becomes the keeper of choice by a small margin. It really does not matter if Rizwan is the keeper either, though as Butler is also my vice-captain, it also makes sense for him to also don the gloves to help set gloves.

Also , this is a completely a hypothetical list that is opinion based. There was no need for that passive condescending tone.

My 2021 World T20 XI

I think technique wise and also in terms of reputation proved by competition from other English keepers (like Bairstow or Billings), Butler is definitely the better option purely in keeping. That being said Rizwan is not a bad keeper but definitely a better T20I batsman for 2021 than Butler.

My 2021 World T20 XI

Pandya has long lost being in contention to play Tests. Right now he is more focused to just get back into the white ball format.

My XI would look something like – Rohit, Rahul, Vihari, Virat, Vihari, Pant (wk), Jadeja, Ashwin, Siraj, Bumrah and Shami.

I do think Gill and Mayank will be used as backup openers until one or both of the regulars retire.

When will Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara score their next centuries?

You make some valid points. I do agree red ball cricket is definitely on the decline in England technique wise. I think Cook’s retirement happened at the same time with England’s cultural shift to white ball cricket after the 2015 WC. Home grown players like Butler , Bairstow and Ali have all modified their game heavily for the white ball

When will England's Test top order sort itself out?

I absolutely agree with that! Maxwell question has always baffled me, while he is great at Australian settings- he still has not produced his money’s worth since the 2014 season in the IPL. Hoping I am wrong maybe this year- but lets see!

With regards to Morris, yes like the previous commentators says he does not even make the South African 1st XI and while he has pace, I just do not see him in the same league as Stokes or Jadeja as an al rounder and definitely not at the level of Bumrah or Archer in the pace bowling department.

Kyle Jamieson can impress, but lets see how he performs after that series against Australia.

Again, as I say in my article- there are many players who missed out but thats just my own opinion on who would do the best this year. Lets see!

Predicting the best performing combined XI for IPL 2021

So Sachin Tendulkar’s longevity and his own extremely high standards make his performance at number 4 mediocre. He has an average of over 44 as an opener which drops to just about 30 as a no 4 position. Whilst he did have some good performances at number 4,it is quite widely known he very much preferred to be an opener and that Virender Sehwag who took the explosive role while Sachin took more of a role to accumulate and build the platform. Much like how Gilchrist was the explosive opener and Hayden was the accumlator.

While Morgan can accumlate,( he is quite very well known for that in his earlier career), yes the English philosophy now is to indeed attack which we can all say he has done a pretty good job with a WC in his trophy cabinet.
Agreed, numbers 3, 5 and 6 have similar roles but with slightly different constraints. Number 3s usually have more of accumulating role (Kohli, Root, Williamson etc) whereas numbers 5 and 6 are going towards of more explosive role (the likes of Stokes, Pandya and Maxwell at those positions are evidence behind it). That distinction of the spectrum between accumulator and the explosive player is still somewhat blurred for number 4, hence the challenge of being the number 4.

The conundrum of the number four position in Indian white-ball cricket

Hi Paul,

While I agree that ICC does give generous grants, if one digs deeper they are usually for essentials like- match fees for players, pitch maintenance and travel for the entire teams (currently an emphasis is also righlty going to the women’s teams). However, a vast source sadly in SA goes to embezzlement which takens talent search a hit .This goes in well with what you say with a poor administration and somewhat archaic structure. One argument would be a rather politically incorrect one, which I did not mention but lets just say having mandatory coloured players may put too much emphasis on diversity rather than finding real talent (that being said, there are brilliant black players in likes of Rabada. Ngidi who benefited from the scheme…) .

The major revenue stream for cricketing bodies these days apart from ICC funding are their domestic competition (where revenue is generated by sponsors and adverts). CA has BBL, BCCI has the IPL, PCB has the PSL and even ECB are now focusing on the Hundred for this revenue stream. Granted , a lot of people have said there is MSL but it lacks the same punch as IPL or BBL while the true profits from them have been questionable.

I have never questioned a lack of talent here (or in the West Indies for that matter), but when you have cricketers like Ab de villiers quitting international cricket for IPL or BBL you get to see a problem. The problem here is a lack of trust between CSA and players, the former has too much political control whereas the latter find lucrative deals elsewhere. One could say this is a problem also between WICB and their players like Narine or Gayle himself of late though I think this is being addressed now.

I hope people realise I am not rooting for South Africa to decline as a cricketing nation, but on the contrary pointing out some red flags that people like CPM refuse to see. The more people see these red flags, the better we can save the great South African brand of cricket.

Is South Africa the new West Indies of cricket?

Hi Cari,
I perfectly understand your comments- good criticisms and all legitimate .

However , here is my defence for my opinions

1. Jos Buttler:- I perfectly agree that it is a very intensive challenge to be a wicketkeeping captain. But as far as wicketkeepings skippers go, you have the likes of Dhoni, Gilchrist and Brendan Taylor are good examples of how they can be successful. de Kock currently captains South Africa and KL Rahul will assume captaincy duties for KXIP along with Dinesh Karthik who already captains for KKR in the IPL. Keepers can work with bowlers to set fields, understand the batsman’s psychology and hence, give them a tactical edge. There is also the fact of other competent keepers in the English circuit on an international level- Jonny Bairstow, Sam Billings, Tom Banton, Ben Foakes and Ollie Popes . So if wicketkeeping becomes too much for him, he can simply hand over the gloves to one of them.

2) Ben Stokes:- I do concede that there might be too much baggage , but he is still is leadership material nonetheless. His prior arrest might be a problem, but he has already led England in a test match so I think he should also be clear on that front. Stokes is an all rounder, and he can lead both the batting and bowling on his day (like Freddie used to back the day).

3)Jofra Archer:- I did mention that would be a lot of nurturing to do. Archer does have a long way to go, but still does not undermine his potential.

4)Joe Root:-Agreed, but as a captain of the Test Team and part of the Fab four, he is still a meaningful contender nonetheless.

5)Tom Banton:- Agreed, has to show more about himself but someone who might have a future here.

Potential successors to Eoin Morgan as England's white-ball captain