Let’s examine the Ian Bell fact. You know the one: he only scores hundreds when someone else in the England batting line-up has already made one.
This has just happened against South Africa. Alastair Cook was first and then Ian Bell outstripped him with 141. Let’s just say that the above criticism does not apply today. Ian Bell can’t help what happens before he comes to the crease and he can’t do much more than make a hundred, so today he’s done very well.
So save the Ian Bell fact. Save it for when he fails. That’s when it means something. It’s not the hundreds he does score that are the problem, it’s those he doesn’t score. A second hundred in an innings is actually pretty handy and puts England in a far better position to go for a win.