Thursday, 23 November 2006

Fletcher and Flintoff have f~**&^*d up and I am furious

Fletcher’s crimes:

Woefully inadequate preparation of our strike bowlers
Pathetic handling of Trescothick
Picking Flintoff as Captain. He may be the best player on the pitch and a genuine inspiration, but that does not make him a Captain. The Captaincy will do nothing but dilute and suffocate the very flair that makes him so dangerous. Flintoff leads by being ‘mates’ with the players and it doesn’t work.
Failure to stand up for English cricket and throw the recent ICC Champions trophy to the dogs, in favour of a proper build up to this series in Australia.
Over reliance on injured players coming straight back to the team without form. Giles, Flintoff, Harmison, Anderson all fit that bill. There is even talk of Vaughan playing in later tests even though he has not played since the last Ashes series.
Staggering decision to pick Giles over Panesar for this Test just because Giles MIGHT score a few runs. If you are looking for a bowler who can slog some runs, try Mahmood, who scored 46 runs just three days ago.
The team decision this morning told the Aussies that we have no confidence, and if you do that you might as well stay at home.

Flintoff’s crimes:

Conspiring with Fletcher to allow the above list of crimes to takes place
Preference for Giles over Panesar and Mahmood over Anderson. Panesar must have burst into tears when he saw Pieterson being asked to bowl spin.
Failure to react to what the pitch and the batsmen were showing him in the first session. Harmison did not bowl that well but ball after ball went flying through extra gulley, yet he never once plugged the gap.
Flintoff didn’t think today and he didn’t manage his bowlers. He lost control early, had no plan and chased the game for most of the day.

If this is the tone of the series then Flintoff can only expect to go the way of our last cricketing great – I.T. Botham, and England will come home empty handed.

Make Vaughan Captain again, crutches and all.


Paul Linford said...

Wouldn't disagree with much of that, Richard.

Strauss should have been captain. Posh gits usually make better captains, though I suppose Closey and Illingworth are exceptions.

Don't know what they could have done about Trescothick, but Fletcher did seem keen to dispatch him very quickly once the problem had returned. And I was dismayed that he was replaced by an untried player like Joyce. They should have replaced like with like and sent for an experienced pro like Butcher or Ramprakash.

Collingwood's nurdling style of play is not suited to had Australian pitches and should not have been chosen for this tour in the first place in my view.

The selection of Giles over Panesar is a joke, and just sent out the message that we were trying to shore up our batting. The history of Test cricket shows that stuffig the side with batsmen rarely works, because those at the top order think there's always someone else to come in and get the runs.

I would not be in the least bit surprised to see Vaughan back as a player for the Third Test, but not as Captain. I don't think even Fletcher would do that to Fred.

Middle & Off said...

indeed...indeed..indeed...I suspect Fred will step down shortly...should have left it to Strauss....

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Anonymous said...

Hear Hear Paul...Ramps for me should never have been dropped. Had he remained in the side he would be captain now. He has done so well at Surrey especially last season. And he is the most techically correct batsman that this country has ever produced, only second in the world to steve Waugh. The dancing thing was a bit silly though!