August 22, 2012

English cricket

Strauss faces heat after defeat

Abhishek Mukherjee

Andrew Strauss, with his faulty batting technique, contributed to England's loss of the No.1 Test status through a comprehensive 2-0 defeat against South Africa and an overall unproductive twelve months, writes Geoffrey Boycott in the Telegraph. He also implies his future as England's captain may be in trouble if he doesn't score runs in England's next Test series in India.

Winning generals always get the praise (and he has had plenty of that after winning the Ashes home and away) but losing generals get the sack. That is a fact. Look it up. I am not one of those people who wants to sack him but you can’t play with 10 men, especially if you are losing. You can get away with murder if you keep winning but this is a problem and he has to seriously sit down and look at his technique.

David Lloyd, writing in the Manchester Evening News, calls for Andrew Strauss to step down as England's captain as he believes his "shelf-life" is over.

He is a two-time Ashes-winning captain, he has just played his 100th Test match at Lord’s, he has led England to the top of the world rankings. He could leave now, with the affection of the nation behind him. Everybody has a shelf life and it is better to call it quits rather than go on too long and regret it 12 months down the line.

Let’s face it, if he does decide to stay on – and next year’s Ashes series could be the carrot that encourages him to carry on – he has a hell of a job on his hands to sort out the KP farce.

Although Strauss has been a worthy England captain, his batting should improve to contribute to the team's wins, writes Mike Selvey in the Guardian. Strauss' future as England captain depends upon how he sorts this problem in India, he says.

India may see the rehabilitation of Strauss and the rejuvenation of his team as a threat once more. If that is the case, expect Strauss to take England through the Ashes campaigns. Fail, though, or at least fail dismally, on the most challenging of all fronts for an England team, and on a personal and corporate level it will be the right time to change.

Sarah Crompton, writing in the Telegraph, relives the sad moments of Strauss watching the final stages of the Lord's Test in the balcony stony-faced, probably thinking about his future as Test captain.

On Monday, the talk was all of England’s decline, how a golden opportunity for world domination had been squandered. As he watched and waited, he was very publicly gazing at the possible end of his career as captain. Perhaps of his Test career. A footballer or rugby player can leave the pitch and gather his thoughts for the press conference. A cricket captain has to endure.


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