England are taking swigs of Adil Rashid again and it’s made them a better team

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2 minute read

England are also through to the semi-finals. A handful of percussive mid-sized innings and some hearty bowling were enough to dispatch New Zealand.

Jason Roy was still there, continuing his ill-advised experiments with flips and flicks, and Adil Rashid was back. England’s template was therefore pretty much back in place after a brief reversion to darker days for that Bangladesh match.

The home team don’t necessarily expect great things from their batsmen. They really just hope that at least a couple of them will come good and that the rest don’t waste too much time.

Roy is at least fulfilling the second part of that – although with the forced and unforced absences of Chris Woakes and David Willey having grown the team an actual tail, they won’t want too many others to join him. We do however suspect that should Roy revert to trying to hit the ball in front of him, all will be well.

For his part, Rashid gave the team stumpings off wides. A lot of England fans remain suspicious of this kind of thing, but when batsmen find life predictable and predictable is enough that they’ll be able to chase down your score, you need to make things unpredictable.

The range of possibilities when the ball leaves Rashid’s hand is great. And if for some reason Eoin Morgan were to feel that this were disadvantageous on any given occasion, he could always bowl someone else.

Better to have the hip flask in the desk drawer and not quaff from it than to find yourself enduring a difficult day at the office with no perfectly healthy liquid coping mechanism at your disposal – that’s what we always say/slur.


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  1. Contrived/absurd food-or-drink-based analogies for England players are one of the top three things I visit this site for (uninterested cats and hubristic Aussie-bashing being the others). More of this sort of thing!

      1. Perfect! That is magnificent, and he’s also into spooning the verb (i.e. spooned one to cover).

        Someone else was recently removed from the freezer in incremental portions when required, but I’ve Diane Abbotted the exact figure in question.

  2. Dead rubber in the next game. Do England give Willey and Barstow a run out? Or stick with the same XI?

    1. Not sure. Do we really want to see those Aussies getting Willey out, Jonny on or not?

      1. you could substitute deKock out of your fantasy league XI to get Willy in and make Johnny your power player.

    2. Keep it the same and bury the Aussies. There is no value in letting an Australian team get even the slightest sense that England are unprepared for your shit.

      1. I don’t think bringing those two in would weaken the team though. Barstow for Roy would probably strengthen it, as would Willey for Wood/Ball in my opinion.

    1. Hmmm…I thought I was getting autocorrected but it seems I just can’t spell Bairstow. Though it’s now starting to look wrong even when it’s right.

    1. But are they good-Pakistanning or Bad-Pakistanning? Which would make them either good at Bad-Pakistanning or bad at Good-Pakistanning. Good stuff either way.

      From another bat’n’ball sport but relevant:
      “The frustration is starting to show from Nishikori now as he makes another couple of errors. Head thrown back.”

      Bestial roars all round!

  3. Stumped off a wide is one of my favourite modes of dismissal.

    When I had the honour/privilege to have The Tasmanian Devil keeping to my right arm orthodont filth, Taz would occasionally give me a little nod of the head and I’d send one down leg side with predictably hilarious results.

      1. If you need your teeth adjusting, you could do a lot worse than field close to the bat when I am bowling.

    1. Specifically, bowling ‘unpredictable’ ‘best rubbish’ to take wickets.

  4. Saffers A have a player by the name of Rudi Second… thought y’all would like to know this.

    Second’s first-class run of first-class form earns run in the seconds; will we see Second in the First team anytime soon?

    1. Quite simple really, the Indian bowlers didn’t take enough wickets, so they lost the match.

      I’m liking this about ODI cricket – a score of 330 isn’t really defensible unless you take wickets. Any half decent team that makes it to within 100 runs of your score with 10 overs to go and only 2 wickets down is going to win unless you take more wickets.

      1. (Reply to Aditya) So… Umm.. The ICC got it right by creating this 2nd powerplay – 10-40 overs, 4 players in the outfield. Runs & wickets, both for the taking, and how teams manage this balance often determines the match! Wow.

    2. Great stuff. Shame last commentators on TMS didn’t reflect your enthusiasm. Sounded a bit non-plussed to me.

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