England take comfort from pyjamas

February 28, 2012

England flew out of Dubai this morning with their heads held high, with beer in hand after two outstanding victories in the ODI and the Twenty20 series. Getting home from a long tour is always a great feeling, especially when you know that it will be a while until Saeed Ajmal is 22 yards from you.

England’s time in Dubai and Abu Dhabi went in reverse to what we all expected. The number 1 side in Test cricket were trounced in the Test series, yet exceeded all expectations in the shorter format, and Jade Dernbach’s slide after dismissing Misbah told us everything we needed to know about it.

KP’s back

We are all very quick to jump on Kevin Pietersen’s back when he under performs, and says ridiculous things in interviews. However, he deserves nothing but high praise for his achievements at the top of the order for England. Pietersen was Ed Giddins in disguise in the early part of the tour, and come the finish, he was back to his swashbuckling best. It’s no coincidence that when Pietersen is firing, England win matches, and series. He has a special ability to take charge of situations, and deliver knockout punches. So for all you Pietersen haters out there, it looks like he’s here to stay.

Cook’s leads the way

Alastair Cook has does his reputation of taking over the Test match side in the near future no harm at all. He bravely led England to a 4-0 series whitewash in the 50 over matches, and scored two brilliant back to back centuries. Cook is one of the only England players to have mastered all conditions. Strauss, you might need a century in Sri Lanka otherwise the press may start to suggest things. I’m still to be convinced that Cook is the long term replacement for Strauss, but Cook is a cricketer that has done so many things already in his career that have surprised so many, so why not captaincy.

T20 success

Stuart Broad is another England player that will land at Heathrow with a beaming smile. In trying conditions for seamers, Broad bowled his heart out, and with a huge amount of skill. He was always a threat in the Test matches, and continued this into the shorter form. The Nottinghamshire fast bowler has the reigns of the T20 team, and he masterminded an excellent series win having been 1-0 down. His captaincy was intelligent, and with that he is able to think about a broader picture (forget the pun) which will put him in good stead with his cricket.

Morgan axed

Things are not looking rosy for all of England’s cricketers today. Eoin Morgan was delivered the news that his place in the Test team has been taken away from him, as England failed to find a way to involve him in their 16 man touring party of Sri Lanka. Morgan has paid the penalty for a lack of runs in the UAE. If England had won the Test series his place might have been safe, but with a series defeat heads must roll and to be fair Morgan can’t argue with this. Morgan will now head out to the IPL where even huge volumes of runs will not blaze a trail for his re selection. Morgan must do the business in front of 250 fans at Lord’s in division 1 of the County Championship for Flower to trust him again.

It looks as though Ravi Bopara with be given the nod in Sri Lanka. I would personally bat Prior at six and play Samit Patel at seven, giving England three spinning options on what will undoubtedly be a Bunsen Burner in Galle, on March 27th.

Wembley way

All being said, cricket was irrelevant this week because Liverpool won their first trophy for six years. The good old Coca Cola Cup. Carol was worth every penny!

Chris Murtagh 28/02/2012

One Comment to “England take comfort from pyjamas”

  1. Mike
    February 29th, 2012 @ 11:33 am

    I would like Samit Patel in the side…

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