A gradual but inevitable descent into cricket-based loathing and bile.

County Championship 2014: England Watch Vol 5.0

Posted on May 10, 2014 by in First Class, Tests


Partly due to events in Scotland this week, and partly due to the weather, the last week of County Championship matches was the most underwhelming yet this season. With England choosing to take their One Day International squad to Loughborough for nets and drills and presumably powerpoint presentations, there were fewer England Watchees playing for their counties than in previous weeks. Therefore, rather than describe how the leftovers fared (conveniently allowing us to ignore the rare sight of Jonny Bairstow bowling and the even rarer sight of Jonny Bairstow scoring runs), we thought this a good point in the season to look at how the various candidates for New England have done so far. Don’t worry though, we will still point out that Surrey lost again.

This is us laughing at Surrey.

This is us laughing at Surrey.

The Yeahs

GS Ballance (507 runs at 84.50)

AN Cook (485 runs at 69.28)

JM Vince (441 runs at 110.25)

IR Bell (405 runs at 81.00)

SR Patel (405 runs at 40.50, 6 wickets at 41.33)

SD Robson (375 runs at 53.57)

JS Foster (329 runs at 65.80, 14 dismissals)

CMW Read (326 runs at 40.75, 18 dismissals)

MM Ali (209 runs at 52.25, 5 wickets at 22.60)

ST Finn (25 wickets at 19.04)

SC Meaker (19 wickets at 20.21)

JM Anderson (18 wickets at 16.88)

HF Gurney (15 wickets at 26.66)

MS Panesar (14 wickets at 24.85)

CJ Jordan (11 wickets at 19.27)

The most encouraging thing here is that England’s three most senior players have all found some kind of form (although Alastair Cook’s unsettled innings in Aberdeen might suggest otherwise). Gary Ballance, remember, is incumbent in the Test team and it would be harsh to reject him after a high-scoring start to the summer. Steven Finn has chalked up more first-class wickets than anyone else, but general consensus seems to be that he just needs to keep bowling for Middlesex for the time being. Our final observation of those that deserve a thumbs-up is the two evergreen former wicket-keepers still ably scoring runs for their counties. If Matt Prior is ruled out of the first Test, there is certainly a case that one or other of James Foster and Chris Read could fill in. The former last played a Test in December 2002, the latter January 2007.

The Mehs

JHK Adams (297 runs at 49.50)

BT Foakes (279 runs at 39.85)

NRD Compton (277 runs at 46.16)

AU Rashid (266 runs at 44.43, 9 wickets at 36.22)

AZ Lees (262 runs at 37.42)

RS Bopara (260 runs at 37.14, 4 wickets at 46.25)

MA Carberry (260 runs at 43.33)

SM Davies (259 runs at 43.16, 5 dismissals)

C Kieswetter (221 runs at 44.20, 16 dismissals)

JM Bairstow (218 runs at 109.00, 3 dismissals)

JWA Taylor (185 runs at 30.83)

MJ Prior (168 runs at 56.00, 0 dismissals)

JC Buttler (143 runs at 35.75, 6 dismissals)

SG Borthwick (141 runs at 20.14, 3 wickets at 47.00)

LE Plunkett (13 wickets at 33.15)

CR Woakes (12 wickets at 18.75, 67 runs at 11.16)

TS Mills (10 wickets at 24.60)

SC Kerrigan (10 wickets at 27.40)

The players in this group haven’t exactly failed this season, but nor have they really set out a convincing case for being selected. Both Prior and Bairstow have been prejudiced by injury, but Michael Carberry and James Taylor have no excuse.

The Tredwells

TT Bresnan (1 wicket at 61.00, 1 run at 1.00)

V Chopra (190 runs at 27.14)

JC Hildreth (178 runs at 29.66)

EJG Morgan (148 runs at 29.60)

JE Root (63 runs at 31.50)

G Onions (10 wickets at 37.10)

JAR Harris (10 wickets at 41.90)

C Overton (5 wickets at 17.80)

J Overton (8 wickets at 47.62)

JW Dernbach (4 wickets at 78.00)

JC Tredwell (3 wickets at 45.66)

CT Tremlett (1 wicket at 150.00)

Joe Root is harshly included here, because he hasn’t played a lot of cricket. Nor have some of the others, but at least Root seems to be playing reasonably after injury. The alarming thing is that we could easily see four of these players featuring against Sri Lanka, especially if Nick Knight gets his way. Seriously, we know Mooresy and Downtony and Whitakery read 51allout, so we’ll just leave this here: DON’T PICK BRESNAN OR MORGAN OR TREDWELL, YOU FOOLS.

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