England ODI team triggers outlandish pronouncement

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We once overheard one man say to another man: “I gave you the money and you ate the money.”

True story.

The background is that we were in a restaurant in Goa on Christmas Day. It was early evening and the proprietor was already absolutely shit-faced. A customer was buying a crate of beer off him to take away and when he handed over the cash, the sozzled restaurateur placed the rupee notes into his mouth. He then ate them.

A few moments later, having apparently forgotten that he had done this, he once again asked for payment. This elicited the immortal line above.

This is very high on our list of the most unlikely things we’ve ever heard a person say. However, a new addition to that list came earlier today when some dark, rarely-used part of our brain persuaded our mouth to utter the words: “England are actually quite good at one-day cricket.”


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


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  1. You can guarantee that England will be quite good at one day cricket for about 3 years, until 6 months before the world cup they will drop a couple of senior batsmen in the middle of a slump, key bowlers will get injured, Ben Stokes will punch another locker, and then suddenly another world cup where the entire team has played less ODIs than Virat Kohli on his own.

  2. That’s a cracker of a story. I was expecting the punchline to be less literal. In fact this is one of those things that made more sense metaphorically before being revealed it was literally, physically true.

    England’s number 7, 8, 9 and 10 tail-enders are Moeen Ali (one Test century – highest 108 not out, two ODI centuries – highest 128, highest first-class score 250, List A score 158), Chris Jordan (highest first-class score 92), Adil Rashid (ten first-class centuries – highest 180) and David Willey (two first-class centuries – highest 104*, two List A centuries – highest 167, one T20 century).

    Obviously FC isn’t totally relevant to ODI but in some ways you get a more rounded picture of just how well someone down the order can bat if needed, because they get more opportunities to do so – and those opportunities are more than a cameo. Whatever stats you look at (except perhaps the ODI ones) that’s pretty seriously impressive as a tail-end.

    As someone who has this math seared into his memory, it’s nice to think England could pull a Bichel’n’Bevan job on someone at some point. Though probably not match Bichel’s bowling record that day… 6-31 for Colly vs Bangladesh remains England’s best ODI figures, not quite up there with 10-0-20-7 except that Colly managed a maiden.

    Incidentally, am I the only one who thinks Chris Jordan is in the wrong place in the order? And that Willey, who is very capable swinging the timber, is too low?

    1. Jordan too high or too low? I think there’s a case for arguing everyone from numbers five to ten are batting too low, but that just shows the depth of batting. Willey, Ali and Rashid are all top six bats in limited overs.

      It’s beginning to seem as though England don’t actually have a batting order as such, and that after the top three it’s more a case of who happens to be padded up.

      1. I’ve long felt a rigid batting order is stupid in ODI so I’ve been glad to see some flexibility… I think it might be a T20 effect perhaps? I am surprised there is so little flexibility in test batting orders – even when batting quickly to set a target, quite seldom is a big hitter promoted (I think England are tempted to show more flexibility with Buttler on the team). And something more exotic like keeping a LHB and RHB padded up so that left/right combinations can be maintained, or alternatively players of complementary styles, I can’t recall even being trialled.

        I think Jordan should probably be below Willey/Rashid; if they simply want a big hitter in that position I wonder if Willey and Jordan should swap.

      2. We do wonder whether Jordan’s currently being given a bigger opportunity to prove or disprove his worth.

      3. Think that’s quite possible actually – one problem with lower order batsmen is that you only get to see what they can really do, in the kind of situation where you wish you didn’t have to.

        (Which is one reason I don’t entirely discount the first class stats, as they get more of a chance to strut their stuff there.)

  3. Stop it with all this positivity. England’s place in limited overs cricket is to be on the poor side of average. This is how it’s been for my entire life (apart from one Twenty 20 cup final blip and the odd Texaco Trophy shock) and it’s how it should always be.

    All this talk of long, powerful, batting line ups, canny bowlers, astute captaincy and supportive management is just wrong. Please make it go away and bring back the nineties.

    1. OK

      1990s ODI England (from):

      MR Ramprakash
      DL Maddy
      CJ Adams
      MP Maynard
      GD Lloyd
      SJ Rhodes
      RJ Blakey
      RC Irani
      CEW Silverwood
      ID Austin
      JE Benjamin
      IDK Salisbury
      SD Udal
      AP Igglesden

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