Cricket 2019 - World Cup & Ashes

 
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

I think they will drop Khwaja too.  He gets dropped a lot, because they like dropping him.  Usually to bring back in Sean Marsh.  But IMHO is twice the bat of Head or Wade.  Batting conditions have been extremely challenging, and luck has played as big a role as skill in this series.  The ball has just been moving around so much.  
djf01
Cricket is a sport where you make your own luck. Occasionally there is 'real' luck (e.g. ball nicks the stumps and the bails don't fall off, ball gets caught after deflecting off a seagull) but we're talking about incidents happening less than once per match there.

Very much like Shaun Marsh, Khawaja is either 'on' or 'off' at any time. At the moment he's off, and deserves to be out.

Paine has had a poor series with the gloves, and the difficult batting conditions have shown up his poor footwork.  He's made some interesting decisions as captain, but I don't think any of them were as poor as Ponting in 2005.  But Wade will drop a catch a test.
djf01
If switching to Wade would only produce one dropped catch per Test, that would be an improvement over Paine.

Alternatively, drop both the Tasmanians and bring in Alex Carey who has been in top form in English conditions in all three formats of the game.

Starc for Paine would be a boost to Australia when batting as well as bowling. I would be astonished if he would do worse than Paine's 12.8 runs per innings.

It's taken a ridiculous amount of good fortune ...
djf01
Bad cricket by Australia, not good fortune for England.

... and I dare say a bit of assistance from the TV producers with the DRS, for England just to draw level.
djf01
That's uncalled for.

I have been keeping track of this very carefully, and I'm confident that the DRS is now as fair as it has ever been. Pay attention and you'll notice that there is a clearly defined order of steps which the umpire requests in turn, and which is the same for both sides.

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  djf01 Chief Commissioner


... and I dare say a bit of assistance from the TV producers with the DRS, for England just to draw level.
That's uncalled for.

I have been keeping track of this very carefully, and I'm confident that the DRS is now as fair as it has ever been. Pay attention and you'll notice that there is a clearly defined order of steps which the umpire requests in turn, and which is the same for both sides.
justapassenger

I remember three decisions where DRS was involved, where I think the TV produces attempted to influence the result.

There was a check for a No Ball when Cummins took a wicket, the umpires called to check for a no ball.  But the TV producers kept rocking and rolling the frames just before his foot landed.  From the frames they showed, it looked very likely it was a no ball.  But one more frame on and if he'd landed behind the line, clearly not a NB.  But that frame wasn't shown to the 3rd umpire, despite him asking for it.  In the end he just didn't overrule the on-field decision, and the wicket stood.

When Cummins was batting he given out caught behind.  Behind the wicket adamant there was something, Cummins convinced he hadn't so reviewed.  I heard nothing on the TV effects stump mikes, though some but not all commentators said they did.  The English DRS show a big line as the ball passed the bat.  But .... it showed big lines before, big lines after and big lines in the neighbouring frames.  Volume was at maximum, and it was including all sorts of background ambient noise.

In the 4th innings of the game, Bairstow was given out and overturned on review.  Flatline on DRS.  No snick.  No background noise.  No ripple.  Volume clearly down to minimum, or not at all.  There were two frames from side on showing bat away from ball.  But ... I don't see how it would be possible for the ball *not* to have hit the bat between the two frames based on where the ball was.  Front on showed bat was in line with the ball.  I think it's more likely than not Bairstow hit the ball, and the TV producers helped show no obvious edge on the DRS.

There were other instances too, that don't spring to mind immediately.  But sincerely believe to the limited extent they can, the English TV producers has been "helping" the third umpires make the right decision in this series.  I don't think it's had a material impact

There is no doubt Umpire Wilson has had a poor series.  But IMHO conditions have been hard for the umpires as well as the batters.  Lots of plays and misses.  Lots of tight decisions, and lost of tactical use of the DRS.  I think a lot of his poor performance has been down to DRS undermining his confidence and authority.  But I think some, but by no means all or even a majority, of his decisions were reasonable, perhaps more reasonable than DRS.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

I have no issue with the Cummins front foot call. I saw that one live, and it was Umpire Dharmasena who was telling the producer to go back a couple of frames in order to find the first point of contact. Looking at the earlier frames was actually an attempt to help Cummins, as an earlier contact of a moving foot would have been further behind the line. Correct direction by the umpire, correct execution by the technician, and the correct decision made in the end.
My verdict: Australia got away with bad cricket, if he hadn't been going so close there wouldn't have been any risk of it going the wrong way.

The Cummins caught behind one was a tight one, but the correct procedure was followed and the correct call made according to the regulations. There wasn't enough to show that the umpire's decision was wrong, which is how the system works.
Verdict: tough edge case that is a predictable consequence of the system working on 'umpire is assumed to be right' rather than 'be sure it is out' - I think it was the 'white' faction of ICC full members (England, Australia, NZ, South Africa) which insisted on this.

I didn't see the Bairstow one, but based on how I had seen the protocol followed properly every other time I can only assume it was correct. Maybe bringing back Hot Spot (dropped due to petty disputes over who would pay for it - ICC should have bought 3 complete sets of the equipment) would have helped with that one?

Personally, I think it's time for a couple more modifications to be made to the DRS:
1. No balls to be checked on replays all the time (not just wickets) so bowlers can adjust their run up before having a wicket overturned.
2. Fielding side to be penalised 5 runs for an incorrect referral.
3. Time wasted during incorrect referrals to be added to the referring team's time for the over rate calculation.
4. 'Umpire's call' to include slightly missing the stumps as well as slightly hitting.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I think they will drop Khwaja too.  He gets dropped a lot, because they like dropping him.  Usually to bring back in Sean Marsh.  But IMHO is twice the bat of Head or Wade.  Batting conditions have been extremely challenging, and luck has played as big a role as skill in this series.  The ball has just been moving around so much.  
Cricket is a sport where you make your own luck. Occasionally there is 'real' luck (e.g. ball nicks the stumps and the bails don't fall off, ball gets caught after deflecting off a seagull) but we're talking about incidents happening less than once per match there.

Very much like Shaun Marsh, Khawaja is either 'on' or 'off' at any time. At the moment he's off, and deserves to be out.
justapassenger

I agree with this only up to a point.  Difficult batting conditions are a great leveller.  Most normal players can't survive in conditions where the ball has done as much as it has in the early stages of every Australian innings in this series.  The Bradmans and Steve Smiths can cope, but no-one else can.  Of the top 3, there have been 18 innings and only one 50, and that was by Warner who played and missed without nicking over 50 times.  Unlike the other openers, Warner only got the opportunity to play his 5ths and 6th innings because of his reputation.

Of the 4 players who have batted in the top 3, Khawaja has made the most runs with the unflattering average of 20.  But by comparison, Warner has an average of 13, Harris 13 and Bancroft 11.  Khawaja is the one who's been soaking up the pressure and giving Smith , Labushang the middle order the opportunity to make serious runs.




Paine has had a poor series with the gloves, and the difficult batting conditions have shown up his poor footwork.  He's made some interesting decisions as captain, but I don't think any of them were as poor as Ponting in 2005.  But Wade will drop a catch a test.
If switching to Wade would only produce one dropped catch per Test, that would be an improvement over Paine.
justapassenger

No. IMHO Paine has kept well for most of the series, but there have been patches where it's fallen below standard.  Conditions for wicket keeping have been difficult too, with slow pitches of variable bounce requiring the keepers to stand close yet still deal with a ball moving radically after passing the stumps.

Wade pre-empts too much, when batting and keeping.  This means he tends to miss the unexpected event, like edges.  For the most part Paine has kept well to Lyon, and taken a couple of catches Wade couldn't hope to take.  If Paine is dropped, it should be for Carey, but IMHO the case for that isn't strong enough.

Alternatively, drop both the Tasmanians and bring in Alex Carey who has been in top form in English conditions in all three formats of the game.

Starc for Paine would be a boost to Australia when batting as well as bowling. I would be astonished if he would do worse than Paine's 12.8 runs per innings.
justapassenger

Starc is a bit better than a good lower order hitter.  But as a batter he's not Mitchel Johnson or a Jason Gillespie.  He's certainly no Tim Paine.  Paine hasn't been scoring the runs as he should at #7, and his poor footwork has been exposed in England IMHO.  But that said, he's been occupying the crease and allowing the likes of Smith and Labushange to score runs in a way Starc can't, even if Starc swats a few has a higher average.


It's taken a ridiculous amount of good fortune ...
Bad cricket by Australia, not good fortune for England.
justapassenger

I think Australia played good cricket.  England got 9 down with 72 to win as a result of being outplayed for most of the match, despite having by far the better of the conditions.  They gave themselves a chance by throwing the bat - which was the right thing to do - and got lucky.  It's as simple as that.

Even after the fumbled run out - where the batter, fielder and bowler keeping the non-strikers stumps all panicked to some degree, Lyon followed it up with a corker of a ball that had Stokes plum LBW.  That wasn't choking, or poor cricket, it was just bad luck.

In my view, depending on conditions, I think they should go into Old Trafford with the same team, except Harris makes way for Smith, and UK opens.  If Carey comes into the side, Khwaja should be Captain.  

But neither will happen.  I expect Khwaja will be dropped and Starc brought for Pattinson.  The formula that had Australia look the better team will be broken, and we'll lose.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
I think people are failing to give credit to Paine for what he actually has achieved. With no captaincy experience to speak of, he found himself dropped in at the deep end, and given the job of resuscitating a team which had self destructed because of the actions of Warner and Bancroft, and the lack of action by Smith.
He was deprived of the two best batsmen for a year. He was given the task of restoring Australia's team from a rabid pack where insults and invective were prized, into something like a cricket team. Even now, only one of the two has performed since his return.
I cannot subscribe to the view that he has been a failure as a keeper. His work in taking Lyon, who is the most difficult bowler in the side to keep to, has been excellent.
He hasn't made a lot of runs. Who has? There are six blokes in the team whose job is to make runs, and it is unfair to single out Paine's batting when the specialists have failed.
There is no doubt that the entire team choked in the last Test, and Paine, because of his position, has to wear some of the blame for it. That's his black mark. For the preceding matches he has done a serviceable job for a man without captaincy experience.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I cannot subscribe to the view that he has been a failure as a keeper. His work in taking Lyon, who is the most difficult bowler in the side to keep to, has been excellent.
He hasn't made a lot of runs. Who has?
Valvegear

I agree.  Wade couldn't do that job.  But that said, I think there are times when Paine has had lapses of 15 to 20 minutes where he has kept poorly.  It's reason keepers are often not made captains.  It's a similar deal with bowlers.  If they bowl themselves to exhaustion, they start making poor decisions as captain.


There are six blokes in the team whose job is to make runs, and it is unfair to single out Paine's batting when the specialists have failed.
Valvegear
Perhaps.  But I do think he has batted poorly.  His first class record is poor.  His test career was revived after a moderate score in good batting conditions in a practice match that meant nothing to anyone other than the selectors watching.

I think Paine is a pleasant batsman to watch because of how straight and generally orthodox he plays.  He can be a sweet timer of the ball too, easy on the eye.  

But his batting footwork is very poor.  He lifts his front foot at the point of delivery, and the only movement he can make is to prop forward.  his back foot shots are played from the crease, after making two movements: forward *then* back to get into the correct shape - but not position - to play.  On a really flat pitch where he can get away with playing on the up, this isn't such a problem.  

On the plus side he does fight hard for his wicket, and I think that's a very important attribute for the captain.  But I must say, I don't think his batting has been of an acceptable quality for a wicket keeper.

There is no doubt that the entire team choked in the last Test
Valvegear

I don't believe that is the case at all.  I don't think the team did choke.  It's not like they fell apart and played poorly.  There were half chances not taken.  But they went for them.  England were just lucky.


, and Paine, because of his position, has to wear some of the blame for it. That's his black mark. For the preceding matches he has done a serviceable job for a man without captaincy experience.
Valvegear

Personally, I think the only change for the 4th test should be Smith in for Harris.  

But I think it's the selectors who will choke, and make 3 or 4 changes, and we'll lose.

I think Khwaja will be the one dropped, but IMHO there is a much greater argument to drop Warner.  He took some great catches in the 3rd test.  But Warner also missed some important ones - notably Stokes before he was 60.  But Khwaja will be dropped to retain Harris, because Coach/Selector Langer has a heavy Western Australian bias, as well as a strong "no dickheads" bias, which naturally means a bias against people who aren't "good blokes".

I think soft wickets in the meaningless practice game will see Starc included, and Australia will bleed runs as a result (unless Warner sandpapers the ball for him, then we'll win).  As will Marsh's 50.

I think Cummins will be "rested".

Wade might be dropped for M Marsh, to cover for Starc's loose bowling.

This is the team I'd select for the 4ths test

Warner
Khwaja
Labushang
Smith
Head
Wade
Paine (c) wk
Pattinson
Cummins
Lyon
Hazelwood
Bancroft (12 th)

Starc will come in for whoever bowls the most overs for the 5th test at the Oval, Siddle in the unlikely event it's a greentop.

But I think our best available team is:

Warner
Khwaja (c)
Labushang
Smith
Head
Wade
Carey (wk)
Pattinson
Cummins (vc)
Lyon
Hazelwood
Bancroft (12 th)

But I'm it on taking on faith Carey is a decent enough keeper, *and* the rest of the team will respect Khwaja as captain - something I'd like to believe this team would, but given Maxwell's treatment of him during the world cup I'm not so sure.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
I don't think the team did choke.  It's not like they fell apart and played poorly.  There were half chances not taken.  But they went for them.  England were just lucky.
"djf01"
I disagree entirely; they did fall apart. Why bowl short to Stokes and allow him to free his arms? Then bowlers, for reasons known only to themselves, refused to attack the stumps when Leach was on strike, despite the fact that this method had got rid of Broad. There seems to be a mind set that you bowl short and scare No 11 out. Then an absolute sitter of a run out was missed.  It was a choke to rival Greg Norman's famous effort in The Masters.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I don't think the team did choke.  It's not like they fell apart and played poorly.  There were half chances not taken.  But they went for them.  England were just lucky.
I disagree entirely; they did fall apart. Why bowl short to Stokes and allow him to free his arms? Then bowlers, for reasons known only to themselves, refused to attack the stumps when Leach was on strike, despite the fact that this method had got rid of Broad. There seems to be a mind set that you bowl short and scare No 11 out. Then an absolute sitter of a run out was missed.  It was a choke to rival Greg Norman's famous effort in The Masters.
Valvegear
IIRC they only bowled 11 balls at Leach.  Some were on the stumps, and he kept them out pretty well.  

IMHO they bowled at Stokes much as they bowled at everyone else.  They didn't bowl 20/20 style, but you have to remember, this is test cricket and they needed to get him out, not restrict him to 8 an over.  Slower ball bouncers and yorkers too wise to reach were not used.

They bowled with 8 catching men on the boundary, and for every shot Stokes middled, there were two others which were thick edges that either carried for six, or fell between fielders.  The probability was Stokes would hole out, and he almost did on at least 6 occasions.  

IMHO they bowled the way they did because they kept trying to get Stokes out, as they should have.  And stokes swung like a rusty gate, because at nine down, he might as well have.  There was a slim chance that approach might have come off, but that was a better chance than blocking and grafting out the runs.  It just happened to come off.  Nineteen times out of twenty it wouldn't.

Fortune favours the brave, and Stokes played perhaps the best the innings I've ever seen in test cricket.  But he was lucky.  And Australia didn't play badly, nor did they choke.  

The reason I'm so disappointed in the result, and so disappointed in people accusing the Aussies of choking is with just 2 runs to win, the very ball after the near run out, Lyon most definitely did not choke.  He didn't do a Greg Norman.  He responded with the perfect ball that had Stokes plum LBW.  Other people choked.
  Donald Chief Commissioner

Location: Donald. Duck country.
I choked - on my Weet bix in the morning when I heard the result.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
They bowled with 8 catching men on the boundary, and for every shot Stokes middled, there were two others which were thick edges that either carried for six, or fell between fielders.  The probability was Stokes would hole out, and he almost did on at least 6 occasions.
djf01
Eight catching men on the boundary? ? ? ?  That is the ultimate and quite ridiculous field; it immediately signals to the batsman that we don't think we can get you out.  Bowl him over after over of middle or leg yorkers - I defy him to hit them for six. Throw in the occasional bouncer. Put the odd one on a fourth stump line. In other words; try thinking!  Persisting with short pitched deliveries was madness as Stokes proved conclusively.  Do you really believe that a captain like Benaud, Ian Chappell or Taylor would adopt such tactics?
I think you look at Australia through rose-tinted glasses - patriotism is fine, but temper it with reason. Australia blew it; big time!

Edit: Leach faced 17 deliveries, and should have faced more. It was made too easy for Stokes to keep the strike.
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Looking forward to wed.
  michaelgm Chief Commissioner

Well was fortunate enough to watch the last day in it's entirety.
Record run chase,,,,,,
Could sense something special. No they can't score 359 no no no but,,,
Just wanted a great contest, rewarded in spades.
And the winner is TEST CRICKET.
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

The Great Australian Choke started much earlier on day 4, when Paine and the bowlers gave England the first session after only managing to get one wicket in the first hour. Stokes and Bairstow didn't have to wait until lunch, because the bowlers started serving up pies as soon as the drinks break was done.

If it were not for some poor shot selection, England should have won by four wickets.

It's a pity that the ICC doesn't seem to care about over rates any more, as a suspension for Paine would have solved a massive problem for Old Trafford.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

They bowled with 8 catching men on the boundary, and for every shot Stokes middled, there were two others which were thick edges that either carried for six, or fell between fielders.  The probability was Stokes would hole out, and he almost did on at least 6 occasions.
Eight catching men on the boundary? ? ? ?  That is the ultimate and quite ridiculous field; it immediately signals to the batsman that we don't think we can get you out.  Bowl him over after over of middle or leg yorkers - I defy him to hit them for six.
Valvegear

IMHO, had they bowled two lengths - as you seem to be advocating - *that* would have been panic/choking.

I thought most of the bowlers kept to their usual lengths, or just back of.  Cummins is the exception, as his usual length is short.

Stokes wasn't hitting long hops, he was hacking away at balls too full to safely pull, which is why he missed so many.   But the game circumstances dictated he play the shots regardless.  And he mis-hit a lot more balls than he hit cleanly.

The straight boundaries at Leeds are even shorter now than they ever were, so IMHO a pitch it up strategy wouldn't have worked and all the mis-hits would have gone for six.

Edit: Leach faced 17 deliveries, and should have faced more. It was made too easy for Stokes to keep the strike.
Valvegear


The tactic I thought was questionable was not bringing up the off side field for balls 5 and 6 of the over, giving Stokes an easy single.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
I thought most of the bowlers kept to their usual lengths, or just back of.  Cummins is the exception, as his usual length is short.
"dfj01"
My point exactly. They bowled like programmed robots, and nobody thought outside the square. I repeat my point; I defy anyone to hit middle stump yorkers for six. There's a difference between "pitching it up" and a yorker.
And Lyon; just once, try a slow, looping, thigh-high full toss and see if the batsman makes a hash of it. It was a good enough tactic to get the great Jack Hobbs, then Grimmett did it to Hammond, and similarly Laker got Harvey at Old Trafford in 1956.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Usman Khawaja dropped from 4th Test. Pattinson rested. Starc and Siddle in mix. Marsh unsighted.
  djf01 Chief Commissioner

I thought most of the bowlers kept to their usual lengths, or just back of.  Cummins is the exception, as his usual length is short.
My point exactly. They bowled like programmed robots, and nobody thought outside the square. I repeat my point; I defy anyone to hit middle stump yorkers for six. There's a difference between "pitching it up" and a yorker.
And Lyon; just once, try a slow, looping, thigh-high full toss and see if the batsman makes a hash of it. It was a good enough tactic to get the great Jack Hobbs, then Grimmett did it to Hammond, and similarly Laker got Harvey at Old Trafford in 1956.
Valvegear

Sorry @Valvegear, but bowling two lengths and thigh high full tosses is choking
  justapassenger Chief Commissioner

Looks like Langer has reached the end of his useful work with the team. He's complaining about the Ashes being stolen.

Nobody stole anything Justin. Your team found a million different ways to choke and the other team took advantage.

Heaven help us if Langer and Paine are still in charge next time we play a hard-nosed team like India or New Zealand.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
Sorry @Valvegear, but bowling two lengths and thigh high full tosses is choking
djf01
Not if it's done deliberately, and I didn't say "full tosses" - I said "a full toss."  You try it once. From this, and previous correspondence, it seems you  have a lot to learn about being a little devious in captaincy. Sticking to one length is predictable. When things are tough, the good captain tries the unpredictable; others plod on in their pre-programmed way. I had a bloke in my side who was very useful if a partnership was thriving. I'd give Alec one over ( 8 balls in those days). He had a terrible action and bowled right arm around the wicket. He was erratic but could produce the odd unplayable ball; either a superb off or leg cutter. He didn't know how he did it, but it often happened. It didn't work every time, but he succeeded often enough that it was worth a try.
I quoted you three examples of champion batsmen (Hobbs, Hammond and Harvey) who were completely surprised and dismissed by a slow bowler tossing up a full toss. Obviously you ignored this.
Australia's best captains have been thinkers and willing to take a punt - Benaud, Ian Chappell and Taylor being the best of the post war examples with Benaud the best of them.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
AUSTRALIAN SQUAD FOR FOURTH ASHES TEST:

  • Marcus Harris
  • David Warner
  • Marnus Labuschagne
  • Steve Smith
  • Travis Head
  • Matthew Wade
  • Tim Paine (c)
  • Pat Cummins
  • Nathan Lyon
  • Josh Hazlewood
  • Peter Siddle
  • Mitchell Starc

(one to be omitted)
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
It would be nice if we could clone a mixture of Starc and Siddle - Starc's often unplayable deliveries, with Siddle's miserly economy. I suspect it will be Siddle who misses out.
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Australia won the toss.

Broad has Warner fought behind. Australia is early trouble.
  bingley hall Minister for Railways

Location: Last train to Skaville
Australia won the toss.

Broad has Warner fought behind. Australia is early trouble.
freightgate

Hahaha - should have dropped Warner not Khawaja, but mates is mates Razz
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Harris now gone. Broad again.
  Donald Chief Commissioner

Location: Donald. Duck country.
Is Warner out in the nets with Pattinson, Siddle & Neser firing in balls from around the wicket?   If not  then time for Khawaja to open.

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