What can England take from the South Africa tour?

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This was a good bitA lesson in momentum: South Africa will take momentum from winning this last Test handsomely. England will take momentum from drawing a series they truthfully expected to lose. Everyone’s a winner. Such is momentum in cricket.

England can take quite a lot of pride after winning the one-day series, saving two Tests against the odds and recording one of their great away wins. Ideally, they would also take Morne Morkel, but he’s far too big to fit through the thing that lets you know whether something can be hand luggage or not.

What they mustn’t take is the positives. Take the negatives for once, you cherry-picking bastards. If all you take is positives, you end up as lazy and self-satisfied. Take it from someone whose whole ethos is about seeing the worst in everything.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


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  1. Things to take from this series:-

    – Crap 1st innings batting from England.
    – No tactical awareness at all. In 3rd and 4th tests England didn’t need to force the pace and throw wickets away, as in control of series at time.
    – Daryl Harper for comedy value, he must stay on the elite panel to give TV pundits something to talk about during boring series.
    – Confirmation that Stuart Broad is not a number 7, whacking Australi around in a lost cause no longer qualifies as being an all-rounder.
    – Confirmation that England still have a problem at Number 3, Trott gets a century batting at 5, so England make him bat No.3 in his next tests, leaving Pietersen and Colly hiding down the order.
    – Confirmation the ICC is still a shambles with their statements about snickogate, and the fact that the technology varies as to what the host broadcaster uses.
    – A ray of hope looking forward to the Ashes, from what I’ve seen of Australia against West Indies and Pakistan, England have a chance down there.

    Things missing from the series:-

    – A statement from Geoff Miller saying these blokes (who keep failing wtih the bat) are the best players in the country so we are going to stick with them.

  2. totally unrelated by must be mentioned…

    “I have been welcomed into the bosom of India as a brother.” says Mathew Hayden!

  3. When England fail at football the manager is blamed. Not a word about the coach and captain being at fault. Strategy? Tactics? We were outmanoeuvred and outthought. We only needed a draw to win the series, they needed to win the game to even draw level. Do we put pressure on them to set a score? Rain is forecast every afternoon.
    1. On a result pitch set up for SA’s bowlers our catastrophic decision is to put our team in.
    2. Same result pitch, same bowlers, so captain attacks the first ball of the match. Out first ball.
    3. Nos 2,3,4 all attack ball. All out.
    4. Bell and Colly put a partnership together in defiance of the advice of the coach presumably to attack at all costs to preserve British honour for drawing at Centurion and Capetown. But they conform 2nd innings.
    5. Bottle quotient highly valued. Brains? None. Coach says we have to attack to beat their score. Build an innings?
    Disaster. Plenty of negatives there. Don’t blame the troops.
    King Cricket are you to blame? Gung ho preferences?
    Who is going to teach Prior to bat defensively?

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