We’ve accidentally made the case for England to drop Moeen Ali

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We love Moeen Ali. We’d never deliberately make the case for him to be dropped because he’s magic.

What happened was we were writing about Sam Curran and Adil Rashid and how they’re slightly one-dimensional bowlers who work brilliantly within a six-man attack but maybe not so well in a five-man attack when it occurred to us that maybe this applied to Moeen as well. So we checked. And very unfortunately, it looks like it does apply to Moeen as well.

The piece is over at Wisden. It’s about England falling between two stools with their team selection at the minute.

25 comments

      1. Blame WordPress.

        We have no role in the Wisden captions, by the way. That’s one of those multi-person websites with editors and that.

  1. With regards to the actual content of the article, one of the big problems is the lack of any batsmen bashing down the selection door. If you have to pick a guy who is going to probably average in the 30s with the bat, it may as well be someone who can bowl as well.

    1. Yeah, that’s why we think the six-bowler approach might still be best at the minute. At least they have one advantage then.

  2. One-dimensional? That’s more dimensions than certain players have.

    One thing that has struck me about England is how we’ve landed in a bit of a mess by trying to fix things that aren’t broken. Stokes and Bairstow had finally arrived at being a world-class six/seven combination. We now have one batting unconvincingly at three and shorn of the gloves that he’d improved so much in, and the other batting at (sort of) five and looking more use as a bowler than a batsman. We had, in Joe Root, a world-class number four/five, a future England great who was making runs for fun. We moved him all over the batting line-up before restoring him at four, but dogged him with a captaincy he’d shown no great aptitude for with Yorkshire. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and not pissing about with that trio wouldn’t have solved the issues with the top three, but we’d probably be in better shape going into the third test had we just let them be what they’re world class at.

  3. What’s going on with Woakes? Hasn’t really been seen in an England shirt since scoring a Test century. Injured?

      1. Any excuse to keep us from the three-blokes-whose-names-rhyme-with-oakes scenario we’ve been dreaming of for years now. Maybe this summer when we are back to pitches that suit Woakes’ style of bowling…

      2. Last I heard, Stokes, Foakes and Woakes are all injury doubts, so maybe they’ll at least get to carry drinks together?

  4. Did Cricinfo not want stools in the headline because of the reference to defecation? They’ve gone for “worlds” instead which is as satisfying.

    1. Wisden! Don’t credit the rivals.

      It was actually our headline. We thought worlds was better. No idea why.

    2. It certainly did seem like some players were – like a swimmer in a sewer – just going through the motions at times.

  5. I agreed with you, before you posted this.

    But after Moeen’s 2 in 2 this Test, someone pointed out that Moeen has been troubling Braithwaite consistently.

    I rate Brathwaite in some regard as a Test batsman and so in hindsight Moeen’s single dimension has been specialist Kraigg Brathwaite’s wicket taking bowler
    And that is good enough for me to retain him in the XI

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