Tag: Marcus Trescothick

Pakistan’s pretty impressive attack

“They are a pretty impressive attack,” said Marcus Trescothick after Somerset played Pakistan. He had plenty of time to assess the bowlers’ worth because he scored a hundred.

The fact that he is 40 and now bats in glasses due to his deteriorating vision shouldn’t in any way be held against the tourists, because age and eyesight really haven’t made much of a dent. Marcus Trescothick still warrants the description ‘pretty impressive’ himself. He’ll still be able to make hundreds against international opposition when his hearing’s gone and he can’t hear his partner’s calls, while his lack of footwork means that he’ll still be able to punch out that odd, motionless drive after knee replacements.

Can we still call him Banger? It seems a strange name for a middle-aged man. But then it seems ever-so-slightly strange that age should afflict his body without any apparent impact on his ability. Maybe somewhere there’s a painting of a skinny, surprisingly youthful-looking 40-year-old Trescothick whose skills have completely deserted him.

The unpredictable flames of England’s one-day batting

Marcus Trescothick shortly after twatting a cricket ball

It’s funny how things change. Time was, England’s one-day batting started with a bang/Banger and then burnt out. Nowadays they light tinder, wait patiently while the kindling gently crackles and then chuck on some logs which have spent eight months marinating in petrol right at the end.

The first scenario refers, of course, to Marcus Trescothick, who made 133 not out off 129 balls in a staggering run chase against Durham this week. Even Paul Collingwood couldn’t get him out. His robust, thocking straight bat presents a marked contrast to Alastair Cook’s deflections and Ian Bell’s scything cuts, which is what we get now.

At the other end of the innings, things are rather cheerier these days. Morgan, Bopara and Buttler provide increasingly demented sloggery, but there’s a case for saying that Chris Jordan presents the logical conclusion to this. In Bridgetown, he hit four of the nine balls he faced for six. Today, at the Oval, his strike rate slipped from that high water mark, but only to 292 runs per 100 balls.

Then he did some bowling. We like him a lot.

Marcus Trescothick’s international retirement

There’s no point dwelling on it, because he’s never going to play for England again, but there’s a fair chance that Marcus Trescothick is still England’s best batsman. Kevin Pietersen’s record may look a little better, but he doesn’t have to face the new ball.

Marcus Trescothick was so good we invented a word for him. We called him a ‘beeftain‘. That reflects how important we feel he was. He scored huge amounts of runs in all forms of the game and he did it in a way that scares the opposition.

It’s unquantifiable, but that ability to impose himself on bowlers is what’s missing from the current England team. A fifty from Alastair Cook ends as soon as he loses his wicket, but a fifty from Marcus Trescothick sometimes reverberated for overs, sessions or even days afterwards. Arguably his most influential innings was his 90 in the dizzying Edgbaston Test of 2005.

We all know that England won that series, but it’s hard to express how unlikely that seemed after the Lord’s Test. There had been some encouraging signs from the bowlers, but England had been bowled out for 155 and 180. Australia were carrying on as they had been doing for years.

Ricky Ponting won the toss and put England in to bat. Glenn McGrath was missing and Marcus Trescothick went out of his way to point this out. By lunch he was 77 not out and it was clear that England’s batsmen needn’t be hell-bent on survival, they could dictate the terms themselves. Pietersen and Flintoff exemplified the reckless destruction best, but they were just carrying the baton that Trescothick had forged.

Trescothick could wheel out those ‘big hundreds‘ that England need so much right now as well. His two innings against Bangladesh prior to the 2005 Ashes had yielded 194 and 151, but he could do it against more formidable bowling too.

His Test best was 219 against South Africa after England had conceded 484. Normally you lose when you concede that many, but Trescothick helped England to 604 and even found time to thrash 69 not out off 66 balls on the final day to see England to a win.

The same opponents saw him compile 180 at Johannesburg in 2005 – in the second innings, no less. That innings is the forgotten prelude to Matthew Hoggard’s seven wickets on the final day that gave England a series victory.

And for a man who can no longer leave the country, his last Test tour wasn’t too shameful either. Two England batsmen passed fifty in Multan signalling a profound collective Ashes hangover. Ian Bell hit 71 as England countered Pakistan’s 274. Marcus Trescothick hit 193.

For his weight of runs, for how his aggression made opponents step back and for how he just stood still and popped balls to the boundary with his static, reinforced prod, we’ll miss Marcus Trescothick immensely.

Marcus Trescothick’s Twister goes on sale

Marcus Trescothick

‘Right foot… blue’

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