The one thing England need to do to resolve their batting frailty

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Dawid Malan (via ECB)

If England could find three really mediocre batsmen, they’d be a hell of a side.

They’re after a two, a three and a five. Fill those spots with players like Chris Tavaré, Ravi Bopara and – hell, why not – Jos Buttler and together with the runs from their all-rounder surplus, they’d be onto a half-decent thing.

The trick is to be more realistic. Aim lower. Don’t look for great batsmen. Clog your order up with journeymen instead in the knowledge that you’re only filling cracks. The bricks are in place – they merely need securing.

Brendan Nash. Now there was a cricketer. What England wouldn’t do for a batsman of his determined-but-ultimately-somewhat-limited competence.



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  1. I have the horrible feeling that the real answer to at least one of those positions is Moeen (he’d fill more, given the chance, but the laws as currently written don’t seem to allow him to). Could always fit Rashid in to fill the lower-order space this opens up…

  2. I think a partial answer is to have Root at 3. He’s in within a few overs usually anyway!

    1. He absolutely should be. He was doing well there. Plus if he’d stayed at three, Gary Ballance could have batted at five. 29 of Ballance’s 42 Test innings were at three, which was – not to mince words – wrong.

      1. I’d like to see Bairstow given another go at 5 too, Ali at 7 and Woakes at 8. Just need a 2 and a 4 then.

      2. Cook. Hameed. Root. Stokes. Hales. Bairstow. Buttler. Moeen. Woakes. Broad. Anderson.


  3. I feel we should all pause for a moment of reflection at this point. In particular we should reflect that this is not the only test match being played right now, and we should not become so insular in our outlook that we neglect to consider the wider world of cricket.

    Heh heh.

  4. Aside from whichever England players will/won’t/might be, it looks as though quite a few Aussies will be ‘on that plane’ to Australia, only this one is the early flight home.

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