Monday, August 06, 2007

England’s World Twenty20 Squad

I seem to talk about twenty20 a lot even though I profess to hate the format.

It’s a slow news day in the cricketing world (the crumbling of the Indian domestic league and virtual collapse of the BCCI aside) so it’s all I have to go on.

England, out of feeble-minded desperation, have called some “specialists” into the fold. Those of note being: James Kirtley (Sussex), Darren Maddy (Warwickshire), Chris Schofield (Surrey), Jeremy Snape (Leicestershire), Vikram Solanki (Worcestershire) and Luke Wright (Sussex). (See the full team here.)

Weirdly, Ian Bell, Alastair Cook, Dimitri Mascarenhas and Monty Panesar has been selected for the NatWest series (50 overs) against India but not the World Cup. Who knows why?

The sad thing is, the selectors seem totally unaware that selection is an irrelevant factor in twenty20 matches. Random chance is the chief determinant of the outcome, so doesn’t matter who you pick.

The format is so devoid of skill, that England could have picked an entirely different side, and it still wouldn’t have made a difference. These “specialists” would swing the bat, as anyone would, and their success is subject to the same laws of probability. All we can hope for is a favourable statistical blip.

No. Best not take the format too seriously, and use it to give some young’uns a go. Such as Luke Wright (in the picture). He's only 22 and has made an impression. May as well stick him into the twenty20 format, and let the proper batsmen take a rest.

6 comments:

Tim said...

Sorry but I disagree with you mate. If this format is so devoid of skill then why have the best batsman (Ramps)and best bowler (Mushtaq) in the domestic game done so well in Twenty20?

Of course it's not down to chance; it is a much shorter game, so it can turn on much less, but, as in any form of the game, it all comes down to skill.

The Atheist said...

H'mmm. I'm not sure I like people expressing their opinions. Let alone opinions in conflict with my own.

*sigh*

I suppose these things must be endured.

Well, I have had a little look in twenty20 stats. This year, the leader in the batting averages is some bloke I have never heard of. You can see him here: http://content-uk.cricinfo.com/countycricket2007/content/player/17171.html

Look at that face. A face of a competent batsman? I think not.

Ramps is about 15 from the top. He is a better batsman than all those above him

On the bowling front...well how on earth do you measure success in twenty20 bowling?

Tim said...

That link doesn't work but oh well!

It's a bit of a slog, perhaps, but it's not the lottery it's made out to be; you need bowlers with nerve and variety and batsmen with a method that works and, especially, the ability to score off every ball.

It's a bit like a the last few overs of a one-day innings. Luck sometimes prevails, but over a period of time the best players will consistnecy do best - even if they are Chris Schofield!

Tim said...

Btw, just to make clear: of course I prefer Tests to Twenty20 et al.

The Atheist said...

It's too late for that now! Once you're a turn-coat, you have to accept your new role.

I will forever judge you on that basis.

That comments I made was imcomplete (someone asked out for a coffee).

I'll finish on your blog. Because I'm cool.

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