4th Test, Day 1

Comments on today’s play below. Will England cap off a fine series or play dead in a “dead rubber”?

Also the Stars meet the Scorchers in the BBL semi and NZ are playing Pakistan in a T20 match as I write. Comments on this and anything else here. …


47 thoughts on “4th Test, Day 1

  1. Tuffers86 January 22, 2016 / 9:23 am

    That James Taylor catch was bloody ridiculous. Incredible.


  2. pktroll (@pktroll) January 22, 2016 / 10:03 am

    Chris Woakes is an adminriable cricketer but he really is neither fish nor fowl. Not quite quick enough despite having increased a yard of pace, gun-barrel straight deliveries despite an original start as a swing bowler. Also not quite a middle order batsman despite his original promise.


  3. Tuffers86 January 22, 2016 / 10:13 am

    Right, I’ve seen enough of Woakes now. Just not good enough.


  4. OscarDaBosca January 22, 2016 / 10:33 am

    Agree, Woakes is the new Irani / Ealham – Bits and pieces personified.


  5. Escort January 22, 2016 / 11:05 am

    Flintoff on big bash commentary taking the rise out of KP for being a show pony. What a hypocrite, his wicket celebrations especially during the 2009 ashes were really modest weren’t they?


    • Arron Wright January 22, 2016 / 11:11 am

      That’s exactly when and why I went off him. Still (2002-08) comfortably top ten material in my favourite England players of the last 35 years, but really not a fan of look-at-me panel-show yet-another-Sky-vehicle celeb Flintoff at all. Low point was when he slagged off Atherton for criticising Cook, and used his lower average against him as if it was conclusive evidence, regardless of the top-class new-ball attacks Atherton had to put up with year after year.


      • Escort January 22, 2016 / 11:19 am

        Your not wrong especially about the Atherton comments.


      • Arron Wright January 22, 2016 / 11:39 am

        Now I’ve mentioned it in passing, I couldn’t resist (and I haven’t made a list for a while, so indulge me…)

        My top 10 favourite England players since 1981 are, in order:

        1. Ian Botham
        2. David Gower
        3. Graham Thorpe
        4. Robin Smith
        5. Kevin Pietersen
        6. Andrew Flintoff
        7. Marcus Trescothick
        8. Michael Vaughan
        9. Graham Gooch – only an imperial phase like that could temper my general feelings about rebel tourists
        10. Graeme Swann

        Honourable mentions just missing out (in alphabetical order): Michael Atherton, Angus Fraser, Darren Gough, Alec Stewart, Andrew Strauss.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sherwick January 22, 2016 / 11:46 am

        Derek Randall played in 1981!!
        Gooch wouldn’t be there as a favourite after his SA shenanigans and what he did to Gower.


      • Escort January 22, 2016 / 1:17 pm

        Here’s my top ten post 1981

        1 David Gower
        2 Mike Atherton
        3 Ian Botham
        4 Marcus Trescothick
        5 Kevin Pietersen
        6 Graham Thorpe
        7 Allan Lamb
        8 Angus Fraser
        9 Michael Vaughan
        10 Jack Russell

        Honourable mention should go to Nasser Hussain, Darren Gough, Graham Gooch, Andrew Flintoff and Mathew Hoggard


    • Benny January 22, 2016 / 5:43 pm

      To repeat a Flintoff quote in interview not long ago “drinking turns me into an idiot”. Do they have booze available in the commentary box?


      • LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 6:47 pm

        I quote it often but Gideon Haigh’s bemusement at the way the media reported on Flintoff and KP in 2009 spoke volumes.


  6. Rooto January 22, 2016 / 11:33 am

    Seems to me that Selvey was tying himself in knots trying to reason out the picking of Woakes over Footitt. All he had to do was say, “I’ve heard they prefer Woakes”, instead of making himself look daft talking about ” they don’t give out caps willy-nilly ” when he’s the walking proof of the opposite.


  7. Sherwick January 22, 2016 / 11:50 am

    From CI: Melbourne Stars have erased memories of their past, where they kept stuttering at the semifinal stage. Tonight, they’ve been clinical and have set up a final date with Sydney Thunder on Sunday. Elation on one side, dejection on the other. Perth Scorchers came into the game, looking to make it a hat-trick of titles, but they bow out of the semifinals following a comprehensive defeat. The man who made the difference tonight – Kevin Pietersen. Took the pressure off the Stars after they lost an early wicket. He was authoritative and the swagger that he’s known for didn’t leave him at any stage.

    Thanks Strauss, Clarke, Cook and Flower.

    Thanks a lot.


    • Zephirine January 22, 2016 / 12:17 pm

      ‘Success is the best revenge.’


    • LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 1:33 pm

      So for all the ignoring him in the promos and so forth, the unspeakable one guides his team to the final.

      It’ll be matches of a poor standard anytime soon.


  8. d'Arthez January 22, 2016 / 12:21 pm

    So the idiot selectors finally picked a specialist opener. Well done.

    Will be interesting to see if Stephen Cook can accumulate a higher aggregate than St. Alastair.


    • Tuffers86 January 22, 2016 / 12:27 pm

      Certainly looking forward to this Cook-off.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Escort January 22, 2016 / 12:32 pm

      He’s three quarters of the way there atm.


  9. rpoultz January 22, 2016 / 12:55 pm

    Outcome of this game really doesn’t matter. If England win this then it is more proof that they are the best side ever. If they lose then well series is already won, nothing left to prove, etc etc.


  10. Andy January 22, 2016 / 12:57 pm

    Amla has trundled his way to 100 (t’other Cook high 80’s). Pretty damn impressive & maybe an indication of what a good batsman can achieve by recognising that the captaincy is not for him (nudge nudge, first Cook).

    He has an average nearing 100 at centurian!

    I know the usual crap about waiting for both teams batting & dead rubbers, but England are looking poor, and it’s becoming a habit. comments suggest Anderson is looking not at it, Woakes is poor etc. Why not try people like Footit…

    I can almost guarantee that we will struggle with the bat, and it will be scoreboard pressure that should have been avoided by england going for teh throat and not just coasting to the end of the series.

    Also, Bairstow has dropped a couple (from the text commentary – I don’t know how hard the chances were). How about we put Taylor back there – seems he can catch everything!


  11. Grenville January 22, 2016 / 1:42 pm

    Breaking news from Agnew: England team and gathered press share a convivial evening at the daily mail’s expense to celebrate Paul Newman’s birthday. Bless.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Sherwick January 22, 2016 / 2:08 pm



    • Mark January 22, 2016 / 2:12 pm

      This a joke right?

      But of course it is true. There is no difference between the England cricket team and the media that cover them.

      I guess it’s time for another media panel lecture on……..How the press works, and how people like us don’t understand their complex job. ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzz


    • rpoultz January 22, 2016 / 3:01 pm

      FFS. This isn’t even a surprise really is it. Might as well just employ Newman, Agnew, Selvey and Brenkley to their media department and be done with it.


    • northernlight71 January 22, 2016 / 5:07 pm

      Top hole. Trebles all round, what?!


      • LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 5:09 pm

        No doubt there’s a really nice reason for this that us outside journalism wouldn’t have a clue about.


      • Benny January 22, 2016 / 5:30 pm

        Presumably the mail will be forking out for several bottles of mineral water?


      • Mark January 22, 2016 / 5:44 pm

        I wonder what they gave him for a present?

        A pipe wrench perhaps……….to fix all the leaks.


      • MM January 22, 2016 / 9:17 pm

        Thanks for the ‘top hole’ NorthernLight71. Haven’t come across one of those in many a year. Glad to see it again.

        A bit of press and Team Waitrose shmoozing will fill the old bulls*it tank up again, no worries.


  12. Andy January 22, 2016 / 2:16 pm

    Amla gone to Stokes….Phew, good job the next man in is rubbish…..


    • Andy January 22, 2016 / 2:17 pm

      well shit, de villiers gone for a duck


  13. Grenville January 22, 2016 / 4:28 pm

    The game is set up nicely. I bloody love test cricket. Just a tuppence, but I think that the worries about the possibility of non big three nations producing great teams is a bit ott. SA. are in transition and have been hit by a rapidly improving england (I wonder if the lessening of influence from Mr Flower, A., might have something to do with that). Even without Steyn, Smith and Kallis they are a good side. NZ are still a pretty good unit. Pakistan are formidable in Asia and, I think, seem to have good talent around to replace Misbah and Younis (Shezad, Azhar, Hafez, Shafiq, Sarfraz, an Akmal or 2 for old times sake could all become bloody good players). Sri Lanka have a big hole in the middle order, but Mathews, the new da Silva and one or two others seem pretty hopeful to me. The big 3 takeover needs taking down, but I see no reason yet to think that it will reduce the quality of cricket outside of the rich boys club,


    • Mark January 22, 2016 / 5:09 pm

      Well I hope your right.

      But I think there is plenty to worry about going forward. The big 3 stitch up means their players can earn good money playing test cricket. There is no need to rush to play in the blossoming private ODI circuses arround the world.

      But it’s not just the money. The reluctance of the big 3 to play the so called lesser nations will only reduce their ability. They are lucky to be granted a 3 test series these days, and they may have to wait many years to play again. Meanwhile there will be endless series between England/Australia/India. If you are a good player from one of the non big 3 do you want to sit arround for years earning little and waiting to play against the big boys or go free lance and earn a good living playing private ODI matches?

      I suggest the system they have come up with will insure that a non big 3 team will struggle to challenge the bigger sides to be in the top rankings. Let’s see what happens over the next 2 years but Iam not holding my breath.


      • Grenville January 22, 2016 / 6:38 pm

        Most of my cricket predictions are rubbish, so this one probably is too. I hope I’m right for the right reasons. I can’t quite believe that the big 3 can manage to play each other indefinitely, but then again, I can’t quite believe that Giles C. exists.

        Liked by 2 people

  14. LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 7:53 pm

    The Cricketer has arrived, and wow. Just wow. Both Henderson and Selfey discuss the Chris Gayle issue, while the regular section “My Favourite Cricketer” has a, frankly, bizarre choice.


    • Mark January 22, 2016 / 8:51 pm

      Ha Ha Ha

      Might as well get Derek and Clive to discuss the Chris Gayle issue.


    • Topshelf January 22, 2016 / 9:22 pm

      That’s funny… I cancelled my subscription after many years – the Public School pull-out was the last straw for me. I quite like Turbervill in it, but Hughes and the cheerleaders became too much to bear.

      Today’s is the first issue that won’t drop on the doormat. But now I’m strangely missing the prospect of the odious Henderson making a pig’s ear out of the Gayle issue!


      • LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 9:26 pm

        Turbervill is the man behind “My Favourite Cricketer” this month.


      • Nicholas January 22, 2016 / 11:08 pm

        Funny thing is, back in 2014 when Andrew Miller et al were made redundant, it was argued that they didn’t need any permanent journalistic staff any more (Swann and Hughes were appointed in under different auspices) – then, funnily enough, along comes Turbervill as it turns out that a magazine does need some writers working for it.

        I’m still holding onto my subscription for now, but the magazine these days isn’t a patch on the Miller or Stern years. It’s even worse now than it was when it was owned by BSkyB (which I *hated* at the time) – and that’s really saying something.


        • LordCanisLupus January 22, 2016 / 11:30 pm

          The thing that saddens me is there is a great cricket magazine out there to be written. Not pretending it’s easy or cost effective.

          Some things just grate. Like a perfectly good article on the history of ODIs which has the annoyance of each year being written as a Friends title. “The one where. …”

          Selvey’s article was nondescript this month. A real nothing. Henderson compared Gayle to Frank Worrell with the obvious results.

          Cheers for the comment, Nicholas.


    • Benny January 22, 2016 / 9:41 pm

      Rather like getting the local painter/decorator to write about Salvador Dali. I’ll give it a miss


    • jomesy January 23, 2016 / 12:27 am

      The whole thing is bizarre – pictures of old men looking young. Roaming editor in chief of whatever has hair in the mag…”nuff said”


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