The state of England’s bowling

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You all hate him for some reasonOn the face of it England’s bowling’s strong, but New Zealand’s batting’s been occasionally dire and the last six Test matches have been in home conditions or in New Zealand – which is hardly the land of dust bowls or steepling bounce.

It’s increasingly evident that England can rely on Ryan Sidebottom. Monty Panesar should thrive in most places. The other pair we’re not sure about.

James Anderson will win matches when the ball swings, but when it doesn’t or when that first over goes wrong, he can still be a liability. We reckon he can bowl when the ball doesn’t swing, in which case being assured of his place should calm his nerves. If it isn’t that, then maybe he should spend some time with Matthew Hoggard learning some cutters and slower balls or something.

Stuart Broad’s equally irritating. Clearly a good bowler. Clearly a fixture in the England side for years to come, but not actually taking rucks of wickets. It’s been fine thus far. England have won both series in which he’s played, but he can’t contribute so little with the ball against better batting line-ups.

Andrew Flintoff will want to play when he’s fit. Simon Jones isn’t doing much wrong and nor’s Matthew Hoggard. These are perhaps more reliable bowlers in the short-term and maybe offer more in less familiar conditions, but Broad and Anderson will improve by playing.

Hopefully the two youngsters will sweep South Africa aside with aplomb and we can stop worrying. Who’s got aplomb going spare? Anyone? Can you post it to Peter Moores if you track some down. What’s in that old ice cream tub in the garage? Isn’t that a tub of aplomb? No?


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  1. Well Freddie is only likely to be reliable up until his 17th over of the first test when he rolls his ankle over and England then have 10 men to desperately to be able to crawl to a draw. You’d have to be mad to 1) let him be in a 4 man attack or 2) bat. I half expect a rush back in after all though.

    I could be persuaded if Jimmy has a good ODI series, but right now i still say get hoggy back in for him.

    Looking forward to the rest of todays articles:

    the state of England’s wicketkeeping
    the state of England’s drinks carrying
    the state of England’s cricket bloggers
    the state of England’s cricket bloggers hangers ons photoshopping

  2. Spigot – do you hope that Jimmy has a good ODI series or secretly wish that he cocks it up?

    (I am ignoring your last sentence. For now.)

  3. Well if he has had sort of epiphany and is someone all nice and new and perfect forever more, then I’d learn to love him and his non-personality, but each time it feels like a bad relationship. A guy who’s no good for you but you just can’t stay away from…

    Now picturing him with 3 days of stubble and a string vest on, which is wholly displeasing. I preferred him as a fish.

    Just like i’m happy with a few shabby innings from Cook, Broad is still welcome to make mistakes for a good long while, but Jimmy is meant to be over that stage, and I don’t want to feel cheated by him again. But then he comes round with a box of all gold and before you know it …

    “Show me how you do that trick
    The one that makes me scream” spigot said
    “The one that makes me laugh” spigot said
    And threw his arms around Jimmy’s neck
    “Show me how you do it
    And I promise you I promise that
    I’ll run away with you
    I’ll run away with you”

  4. Has anyone else noticed the resemblance between our latest promising young all-rounder, Stuart Broad, and Australia’s lastest promising young all-rounder, Ellyse Perry? Might they be sisters?

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