English cricket January 14, 2013

England's limited-overs progress report

Owen Edwards
Issues facing England's short-format cricket include too much differentiating between ODI and T20 players and the below-par seam attack
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Issues facing England's short-format cricket -

1). Too much differentiating between ODI and T20 players: There will always be specialists but, recently, it seems that players are being unnecessarily pigeonholed as specific T20 or ODI players.

There are a couple of examples that jump out here, particularly Ian Bell and Alex Hales. Bell's form since he moved to the top of the order in 50-over cricket has been sensational. His recent struggles in Tests have generally seen him getting bogged down and reigning in his naturally attacking instincts against spin. When the shackles are off, he has looked as good as anyone in the world during the last 12 months and there is no reason why this form can't be transferred to T20 cricket.

Hales has suffered from the opposite dilemma where a very bright start to his T20 international career has not resulted in an ODI debut. After 14 matches he has 418 runs, averaging just shy of 35. Those are impressive stats, especially considering he strikes at 127.43 as well. While Jos Buttler, Luke Wright and Jonny Bairstow have all been trialed in both formats on the back of much less impressive numbers, Hales is still waiting for his chance.

It could be argued that, with Bell, Cook and KP all scoring heavily, there is no room for Hales. But he would be a great addition to the middle order where England have sometimes lacked the ability to clear the ropes.

2). The below-par seam attack: England's fast-bowling stocks have been healthy for a few years now, but there are still significant voids to fill in the shorter formats. James Anderson is a wonderful Test bowler, but he has been unable to spearhead the ODI attack in a similar way.

It's generally considered that the taller, hit the deck bowlers, are more effective than him and Steven Finn has shown this more than anyone. Finn is probably the only seamer to really merit his spot and is justifiably ranked No. 6 in the world.

Tim Bresnan's form has dipped for England and it will be a surprise if he's still playing international cricket by the end of 2013. His superb contributions for England should not be forgotten, especially in the 10/11 Ashes victory, but he doesn't look like replicating those displays.

Stuart Broad has faced a similar dip in form. Hitherto his batting ability has kept him above Graham Onions, Finn, etc. in the pecking order, but patience may rightfully be running out with him. It's worth noting that he averages 12.57 in 93 ODI matches with the bat and just 6.60 in T20s.

A general lack of control and clear gameplan can be attributed to Bresnan and Broad's shortcomings, but they are not the only ones. Jade Dernbach's bag of tricks is a great weapon, but his stats clearly show they aren't enough alone. His 27 ODI wickets cost 36.62 and more worryingly come at more than 6-an-over. His T20 numbers are better, but won't frighten any batsmen around the world. Whether he is genuinely international quality is doubtful.

There is a plethora of seam bowlers on the cusp of the England set up, but none have really shown anything to excite the selectors. Aside from Finn, James Anderson (14th) is the only England seamer in the top 29 ODI bowlers in world cricket, with Broad coming in at 30th. In T20 cricket it is even worse, where England's highest-ranking quick bowler is Broad at 19th. Chris Woakes and Stuart Meaker have both been trialed - the former a rival to Broad's bowling allrounder spot - but neither really impressed. This outlines England's six seam options in current usage, of which only one can really justify his selection.

The positives for England in shorter formats:

1). The run-hungry top-order batting: England's top order looks in great shape. The ODI opening combination of Cook and Bell oozes class and consistency. Although both players struggled to secure their spots initially, they have formed a quality partnership now and do not look like taking a backward step. It could be argued that KP should open after his centuries last winter but England are getting good starts without him doing so and he is the most capable six-hitter when the field is back later in the innings. Bell is able to play the anchor role, the explosive starter or both and Cook is the perfect anchor, especially considering he strikes at 80 as well.

Jonathan Trott's contributions to date cannot be questioned. But whether he is picked or not, whether he becomes a specialist ODI batsmen when playing in seam-friendly conditions or not, it is a rare luxury that England could consider omitting someone who averages over 49 in 50-over cricket.

The waters are a little muddier in T20s, but the signs are still positive. Alex Hales has made the opening spot his own and looks a fine prospect. The statement he made with a 52-ball 89 on his Big Bash debut underlines his credentials and will enhance his reputation around the world. Michael Lumb is a steady performer, but is likely to be usurped by Pietersen at the top of the order in the big matches.

The number three spot poses more questions, but the players are there to answer them. The jury is constantly out on Luke Wright whose international stats are inflated by runs against weaker opposition. Whether he can make the difference often enough against the South Africans, the Aussies etc, is still to be seen.

Regardless of Wright's position, England have the talents of Eoin Morgan to call on and the exciting potential shown by Jos Buttler in the last six months, not to mention Bell who surely deserves a chance in this format.

2). The classy spin bowling: This is a simple one because Graeme Swann is brilliant. He is rated number seven in the world in ODIs and is up at third in T20s. He is a consistent threat, taking wickets and restricting the scoring. His respective economy rates are 4.47 and 6.36, which sets him light years ahead of all of England's other bowlers and his averages are just as impressive.

Swann is the key to England's shorter-format bowling attack. The role of spin in T20 has always been important and England will nearly always look to play two spinners, probably in ODIs too. There are multiple options to support Swann. James Tredwell has been rewarded for years of consistency in county cricket. His recent four-for against India highlighted his ability and there is no reason that he and Swann can't play together. Hopefully Tredwell doesn't get labeled purely as Swann's backup because he is proving that he's better than that.

After these two, Danny Briggs is currently the emerging youngster who has been very effective for Hampshire. After impressing in his first few outings for England, his confidence has taken a knock of late with some poor returns against South Africa last summer and India this winter. However, he is only 21 and time is on his side.

The other left-arm option is Monty Panesar who is a fine Test bowler but, frustratingly, his fielding shortcomings will probably prevent him adding to his 26 ODIs. It should be noted that he performed reasonably well in these with an economy of 4.49, although he only took 24 wickets.

The dilemmas for England's short format cricket:

1). Figuring out who does the wicketkeeping: Matt Prior is arguably the best wicketkeeper-batsman in world cricket, but doesn't play any short format cricket at all for England. With an average under 25 in both ODIs and T20s, not to mention just three half centuries in 62 ODI innings, it is understandable that he lost his place but, considering the degree of his maturity over recent years, a recall is overdue.

Kieswetter's stock has fallen of late. He was first choice in ODIs and T20s for some time, but his block or bash mind-set has drawn criticism and he's been to blame for some slow starts that have cost England dear. His ability to hit a long ball can't be argued with, but it's the balls in between that cause concern.

Buttler's elevation to wicketkeeper in the T20 format is forward thinking move. His keeping looks raw, which is a concern, but he is an exciting batsman and could develop into the role.

2). Allrounders: Avoiding the bits and pieces players. England may have left behind the dour late nineties obsession with 'bits n pieces' players, but the lack of a genuine allrounder still causes problems. Andrew Flintoff was a dream ODI cricketer, but England have not filled that void, while Paul Collingwood left a big hole as well.

The allrounders in the England set-up are currently limited to Samit Patel, Chris Woakes and Luke Wright. But none of them look capable of winning a match with either bat or ball.

Of the three, Patel is top of the pecking order but he is a funny case. For much of his international career he has been picked as a second spinner, often batting as low as number eight. Yet he is really a batting allrounder who averages 39 with bat and ball in first-class cricket.

Does Woakes fit the bill that Bresnan and Broad are failing to? He is a more accomplished batsman, but shoe horning him in at number seven or eight won't solve the seam bowling woes. England have to accept the lack of a genuine allrounder and decide how to formulate a winning side. Is there really any value in sacrificing the quality of their bowling attack by picking numbers 6 to 8 as useful contributors, but not match-winners? Ideally an ODI side has two or three allrounders, but England should consider the merit in picking batsmen to bat and bowlers to bowl in the absence of a Flintoff, a Watson, a Kallis etc.

My teams

ODI 1. A Cook 2. I Bell 3. K Pietersen 4. E Morgan 5. A Hales 6. M Prior (wk) 7. C Woakes 8. J Tredwell 9. G Swann 10. J Anderson 11. S Finn

T20 1. K Pietersen 2. A Hales 3. I Bell 4. E Morgan 5. J Buttler 6. M Prior (wk) 7. L Wright 8. S Broad 9. J Tredwell 10. G Swann 11. S Finn

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Raynoch on February 3, 2013, 13:30 GMT

    You make tghins so clear. Thanks for taking the time!

  • Olli on January 18, 2013, 19:56 GMT

    @Vivian

    Prior is the best wicket keeper batsman in world cricket by far. De Villiers no longer keeps, Dhoni can only plat test cricket and Sangakarra does not keep either. Prior is comfortably the best wicket keeper who consistently bats excellently in world cricket.

  • Ash on January 16, 2013, 21:25 GMT

    Good as far as it goes but the composition of the ODI side surely has to reflect the fact that the next two global tournaments are in England and Australia. Two spinners is a luxury. Trott is ideally suited to batting in English conditions and had a pretty decent record in Australia too. Agree that the T20 and ODI teams should be more alike but why Woakes / Broad in only one of the sides?

  • Josh on January 15, 2013, 18:40 GMT

    @Harsha,

    In test matches, yes. De Villiers isn't as good a keeper and neither is Dhoni for that matter, and they're the only two that come close.

    Batting wise, of those three I'd take De Villiers purely as a batsman but if you accept that the other two are better keepers then what your left with is the following shoot out:

    Prior average vs India in last two series: 58.77 Dhoni average vs England in last two series: 31.61

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 18:04 GMT

    First thing to do is to drop Ishant Sharma.He is consistantly unable to produce even one single full length bal, leave aside yorkersl.Im unsure whether he will be able to even get a county XI batsman out in the current form (which he is in for last 1 year or more).In addition, he is leaking runs like anything(70+ in last ODI).Instead of Ishant, even Dhoni can bowl if it means to fill the overs or maybe someone like Irfan Pathan would be handy.Anyway Ishants overs are all being clobbered and seldom a major wicket is claimed by Ishant in recent performances. Gambhir should be rested till he gets back to form - similarly Rohit Sharma....maybe some chance can be given to Pujara/Murali Vijay/Dhawan Varun Aaron/S.Sreeshant/Umesh Yadav are anytime better choices than someone like Ishant who seldom takes wickets other than that of tailenders... Dhoni proves his critics that he is all time best captain/player that india has ever witnessed...one in the class of Dada

  • Vivian on January 15, 2013, 17:51 GMT

    "Matt Prior is arguably the best wicketkeeper-batsman in world cricket".You've got to be kidding mate....When you have the likes of Dhoni who played a blinder in this innings, how can you ignore such a player? What about Sangakara,AB De Villiers? I can understand that one would tend to support their country players but you've also got to be realistic? What next, Michael Vaughan is arguably the world's best batsman who never scored a hundred?

  • Looey on January 15, 2013, 15:30 GMT

    I think the glaring omission here is in the all-rounder section, where the most promising player is clearly Ben Stokes. A genuine batsman - and hugely powerful to boot - who bowls heavy fast-medium and bowls it well. He can be our Shane Watson and I would hope that the England management are trying to nurture him and not rush things at present.

    The guy who mentioned Toby Roland-Jones may have a point too. I played against him a lot before he broke into the Middlesex team and he is a great prospect. He is probably in the Woakes mould, and although he can bat is not at Woakes's level but he has the potential to be quicker having been a late starter who is now maturing as a pro and he has a superb repeatable action.

    But Stokes is the man who can add Watson/Kallis like balance as a top 6 batter who can potentially bowl 10 overs of seam and allow an extra specialist spinner in the subcontinent.

  • Olli on January 15, 2013, 15:02 GMT

    Bloody article this one, correct on many fronts and I could not agree more with the analysis of Dernbach and Kieswetter; neither of whom merit a place in the side.

    One omission that surprised is the one of Bairstow which the other commenters have mentioned. I think he has been very unlucky in the past few months but I'm sure England will return to him. On the subject of Trott, I've never been convinced with his limited overs role, as it is undeniable that he scores runs, but is a strike rate of 75 good enough coming in at three, so I would prefer Pietersen or some youth any day (the likes of Bairstow, or even James Taylor, the forgotten man).

    Just on today's performance, the middle-order is shoddy with Kieswetter and Patel in there and should be bolstered by Bairstow and Butler. Just looking at Kieswetter and Patel at 6 and 7 makes me feel uneasy.

    But once again, cracking piece.

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 12:40 GMT

    Agree that Buttler is a very exciting prospect for WK.I find it strange that England have stuck so rigidly to Kieswetter over the past few years as he has far too many off matches. Prior seems to be being kept fresh for tests, Davies was never really was given a chance, so the future WK must be Buttler, or indeed Bairstow,

  • Farrukh on January 15, 2013, 11:48 GMT

    Excellent work, enjoyed reading this. Agree with all the arguments presented!

  • Raynoch on February 3, 2013, 13:30 GMT

    You make tghins so clear. Thanks for taking the time!

  • Olli on January 18, 2013, 19:56 GMT

    @Vivian

    Prior is the best wicket keeper batsman in world cricket by far. De Villiers no longer keeps, Dhoni can only plat test cricket and Sangakarra does not keep either. Prior is comfortably the best wicket keeper who consistently bats excellently in world cricket.

  • Ash on January 16, 2013, 21:25 GMT

    Good as far as it goes but the composition of the ODI side surely has to reflect the fact that the next two global tournaments are in England and Australia. Two spinners is a luxury. Trott is ideally suited to batting in English conditions and had a pretty decent record in Australia too. Agree that the T20 and ODI teams should be more alike but why Woakes / Broad in only one of the sides?

  • Josh on January 15, 2013, 18:40 GMT

    @Harsha,

    In test matches, yes. De Villiers isn't as good a keeper and neither is Dhoni for that matter, and they're the only two that come close.

    Batting wise, of those three I'd take De Villiers purely as a batsman but if you accept that the other two are better keepers then what your left with is the following shoot out:

    Prior average vs India in last two series: 58.77 Dhoni average vs England in last two series: 31.61

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 18:04 GMT

    First thing to do is to drop Ishant Sharma.He is consistantly unable to produce even one single full length bal, leave aside yorkersl.Im unsure whether he will be able to even get a county XI batsman out in the current form (which he is in for last 1 year or more).In addition, he is leaking runs like anything(70+ in last ODI).Instead of Ishant, even Dhoni can bowl if it means to fill the overs or maybe someone like Irfan Pathan would be handy.Anyway Ishants overs are all being clobbered and seldom a major wicket is claimed by Ishant in recent performances. Gambhir should be rested till he gets back to form - similarly Rohit Sharma....maybe some chance can be given to Pujara/Murali Vijay/Dhawan Varun Aaron/S.Sreeshant/Umesh Yadav are anytime better choices than someone like Ishant who seldom takes wickets other than that of tailenders... Dhoni proves his critics that he is all time best captain/player that india has ever witnessed...one in the class of Dada

  • Vivian on January 15, 2013, 17:51 GMT

    "Matt Prior is arguably the best wicketkeeper-batsman in world cricket".You've got to be kidding mate....When you have the likes of Dhoni who played a blinder in this innings, how can you ignore such a player? What about Sangakara,AB De Villiers? I can understand that one would tend to support their country players but you've also got to be realistic? What next, Michael Vaughan is arguably the world's best batsman who never scored a hundred?

  • Looey on January 15, 2013, 15:30 GMT

    I think the glaring omission here is in the all-rounder section, where the most promising player is clearly Ben Stokes. A genuine batsman - and hugely powerful to boot - who bowls heavy fast-medium and bowls it well. He can be our Shane Watson and I would hope that the England management are trying to nurture him and not rush things at present.

    The guy who mentioned Toby Roland-Jones may have a point too. I played against him a lot before he broke into the Middlesex team and he is a great prospect. He is probably in the Woakes mould, and although he can bat is not at Woakes's level but he has the potential to be quicker having been a late starter who is now maturing as a pro and he has a superb repeatable action.

    But Stokes is the man who can add Watson/Kallis like balance as a top 6 batter who can potentially bowl 10 overs of seam and allow an extra specialist spinner in the subcontinent.

  • Olli on January 15, 2013, 15:02 GMT

    Bloody article this one, correct on many fronts and I could not agree more with the analysis of Dernbach and Kieswetter; neither of whom merit a place in the side.

    One omission that surprised is the one of Bairstow which the other commenters have mentioned. I think he has been very unlucky in the past few months but I'm sure England will return to him. On the subject of Trott, I've never been convinced with his limited overs role, as it is undeniable that he scores runs, but is a strike rate of 75 good enough coming in at three, so I would prefer Pietersen or some youth any day (the likes of Bairstow, or even James Taylor, the forgotten man).

    Just on today's performance, the middle-order is shoddy with Kieswetter and Patel in there and should be bolstered by Bairstow and Butler. Just looking at Kieswetter and Patel at 6 and 7 makes me feel uneasy.

    But once again, cracking piece.

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 12:40 GMT

    Agree that Buttler is a very exciting prospect for WK.I find it strange that England have stuck so rigidly to Kieswetter over the past few years as he has far too many off matches. Prior seems to be being kept fresh for tests, Davies was never really was given a chance, so the future WK must be Buttler, or indeed Bairstow,

  • Farrukh on January 15, 2013, 11:48 GMT

    Excellent work, enjoyed reading this. Agree with all the arguments presented!

  • John on January 15, 2013, 6:07 GMT

    @jimbond, I don't really know how you can say that ODIs are bleak. Other than their last trip to India, England's ODI results since the last WC have been good. They still need to develop some consistency and they certainly don't look a dominant team but there's no doubt that they've made progress.

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 6:03 GMT

    @Harsha, who would you claim in the best keeper/batsman then? AB de Villiers, whose batting has gone right off the boil since he took the gloves full-time? Sangkarra, who doesn't keep wicket any more and whose batting has improved as a result? The best keeper/batsman isn't just the batsman with the best average who also dons the gloves. The few keepers who do have better batting figures than Prior aren't the keeper he is.

  • Anonymous on January 15, 2013, 5:43 GMT

    The ODI team is a bowler light. One of the guys has a bad day then who do you turn to? Peitersen? It's time Ben Stokes was looked at properly, as for now Patel is doing a good job and his bowling is serviceable. As for Prior, I would just leave him be. He is a wonderful test match player, playing him in all 3 formats keeping wicket and batting could lead to burn out. Go with Buttler in T20 and perhaps Bairstow in ODI's. The one day Lions tour of Australia in Feb could help find some quicks to back up Finn. Maybe Topley or R-Jones will stick his hand up in the next six months.

  • Harsha on January 15, 2013, 5:15 GMT

    Excellent, but Prior, the best WK-Batsman in the World, you are kidding right?

  • John on January 15, 2013, 4:23 GMT

    While I'm a fan of Ian Bell, I'm not convinced that including him is the T20 team is a good idea. I was long a proponent of using him as an opener in ODIs and he has come good in that capacity. Many of his struggles when he was batting down the order occurred when he had to come in and hit from the word go. Opening gives him that little bit of time to get comfortable before looking for the big shots, which he often didn't have batting at #5 or #6. He will also not have that time in T20, even if he's opening, so I'm not convinced that he would be successful. I do agree with playing Hales in ODIs. I think the fact that he's an opener has counted against him but Root was played out of position so why not Hales? While I think Bairstow and Buttler may both be stars, Hales looks more deserving than either of an ODI spot.

  • jimbond on January 15, 2013, 1:47 GMT

    I wouldnt call this really 'progress'. The last match was more an indication of India's developing frailty. England would do well to remember what makes them good in tests. It is largely due to the penetration provided by Anderson's swing bowling, Petersen's ability to counterattack, Cook and Trott's solidity at the top, the constant spin threat of Swann, and the support cast of Bell, Prior and Finn/Onions/other pacers. Most of this is not transferable to ODIs or T20s, and the T20 specialists are nothing great. England's good performances in tests can continue for another year at least as the big five (Anderson, Petersen, Cook, Trott, Swann) retain their form, but ODIs are still bleak.

  • Abdul R. Siddiqui on January 15, 2013, 0:59 GMT

    I agree with the previous comments; you really have made a very detailed and excellent analysis, Owen. With the England line-up, I am always stunned by the differences in Tests and ODIs/T20s; not only is the physical make-up of players completely different, but the whole nation seems to have a different attitude towards the formats. I feel as if English fans still treat limited-overs cricket as a second priority when, really, England has produced some excellent players for the shorter game.

    Of course, England also has the definitive domestic system, I think, so their pool of talent occasionally seems limitless. For that purpose, I don't mind the selectors ultimately aiming towards three different squads, but a good player is a good player and should not be limited to just one format. Besides, regardless of modern pinch-hitting tactics, I wouldn't mind one or two more players in the mold of Trott: batsmen that can anchor an innings as everyone around them gets all slog-happy.

  • Straight_on on January 15, 2013, 0:05 GMT

    Good analysis followed by bizarre teams. Luke Wright batting at seven and one of only five bowlers in T20s? Presumably you're planning on bringing Ian 'Ambrose' Bell on for Wright when his first over goes for twenty?

    And picking Hales, a guy who can hit a long ball at the top of the order but is poor against spin and constantly fails to tick the scoreboard over at five in ODIs?

    Odd. Still, you haven't picked Dernbach or Kieswetter in either team so you get some credit for that.

  • Paul on January 14, 2013, 23:54 GMT

    Very astute article. I think it is difficult to overlook Trott for the ODI team though. His average in ODIs in very impressive and his strike rate is pretty decent too - 75 runs per 100 balls. Might be an idea for England to suggest that he strategically chips straight to mid-on at 40 overs though, when necessary! Currently, he should probably play before Hales in ODIs (not 20/20s of course).

  • purush on January 14, 2013, 23:45 GMT

    Alex Hales is my man, i think he is the next KP for England. England has a very bright future for their team and bowling wise they have anderson, swann, finn, panesar. so i think after south africa, england are the second best team in tests.

  • Neil on January 14, 2013, 22:30 GMT

    I am really baffled by how much Samit Patel is not taken seriously, nearly every cricket writer, seems to assume it is just biding time before he is left out. But he looks to me an international class ODI batsman....since the last world cup he has avergaed over 40 at a strike rate of 95, and he seems to score pretty consistenly at the end of the innings when the pressure is on. When have England had the luxury of that at 7, a spot we have always struggled with....he is not a genuine all rounder as a bowler...he doesnt really have a wicket taking ball. But if he has to bowl ten overs, you will get something like 10 overs 50 runs for 1. Which is not bad for your 5th bowler if other are strong. Ideally Bopara, would get his head together and be able to share a few overs with him. But either way unless you are very lucky, when you pick the all rounder, you make the choice to play to a batting strength or a bowling strength....England will win the WC, through their ability to make big score

  • Philip Kendall on January 14, 2013, 21:59 GMT

    Mark,

    "The Sussex lad" is Michael Yardy; his (mental) health issues have unfortunately pretty much ruled him out of playing for England again.

  • Jamie Slaney on January 14, 2013, 21:27 GMT

    Hi, I agree with all the above and think its well written, but I think the view Luke Wright is not a match winner and doesnt score against the bigger teams is slightly wrong. He made 50 on debut against a strong Indian side in 2007, he has also contributed with wickets and runs against South Africa when we toured there in 2009; and if I am much mistaken, he was due a test debut had it not been for Ian Bell. With his experience of playing in India and Australia, I believe a middle order role in the 50 over team is justified. Granted his bowling as taken a step backward, but he fields wholeheartly and is one of the quickest outfielders. I think opening in the T20s and being the finisher in 50 overs is good enough. I would love to see him given a chance at number 6 or 7 in the test team also but I think he wont as he misses first class cricket for sussex as he plays in the IPL and keeps getting injured.

    Jamie Slaney

  • Martin on January 14, 2013, 21:05 GMT

    I think Azeem Rafiq will debut in a limited overs format within the year.

  • Nutcutlet on January 14, 2013, 20:47 GMT

    (George Dobell will like this!). The allrounder's berth could (& IMO) should be filled by Rikki Clarke. He has got better & better as an all-round cricketer since he last fleetingly appeared for England in 2006 & at 31 yrs old, he should not be considered as on the scrap-heap. He is also as good a fielder as there is to be found anywhere. That he hasn't been recalled to the ranks is nothing short of astonishing.

  • Tom G on January 14, 2013, 20:08 GMT

    A good read, but for me you have fallen into the trap of thinking: Prior scores runs in test cricket, therefore Prior should play in the other two forms as well. Michael Vaughan pointed out on TMS a couple of years ago that Prior is primarily an off side player, and in ODIs bowlers bowl straighter as standard. That is why Prior's ODI record is so weak (and Vaughan's also, according to the man himself). I think Flower/Giles have worked this out by now, so he won't be playing again.

    But you're right, Hales will get his chance before too long. Champions Trophy is at home though, so I doubt we'll play two spinners. Opens the door for Woakes/Bopara. Who knows, one day we may see Ben Stokes as our genuine allrounder. Wouldn't that be something...

    Mark - do you mean Michael Yardy? Unlikely we'll be seeing him again, sadly. Best wishes to him, he was vital when we won the World T20.

  • Lewis on January 14, 2013, 19:42 GMT

    Not saying I have any answers to my questions but for what it's worth, here are my teams (with the next few years in mind)

    ODI: 1)Cook 2)Bell 3)Pietersen 4)Morgan 5)Bairstow/Buttler (wk) 6)Stokes 7)Patel 8)Broad 9)Swann 10)Anderson 11)Finn (Sorry Trott, you can play when Bell inevitably begins to struggle...)

    T20: 1)Hales 2)Wright 3)Pietersen 4)Morgan 5)Bairstow/Buttler (wk) 6)Stokes 7)Patel 8)Broad 9)Swann 10)Finn 11)Dernbach

    The decision on Buttler vs Bairstow to be made based on keeping ability as I think they could both do a job with the bat.

    You might guess from this squad that I really rate Stokes as a potential all-rounder, if he can stay fit. Not such a big fan of Dernbach, but can't really see any quality T20 seamers coming through as pointed out in the article (Topley/Wood perhaps potential left-arm variant but too soon). Feel bad for Kieswetter but he hasn't done enough in my opinion, but I think there is enough quality there for him to be next test keeper after Prior.

  • Lewis on January 14, 2013, 19:28 GMT

    A good analysis of the areas England need to improve in order to be successful in these formats.

    Of course the teams are up for endless debate but I do have some criticisms of your teams.

    First, do we think that Tredwell and Swann, two very similar bowlers, give enough variety to the attack?

    Does moving the position of Alex Hales really give him the best chance to succeed or would a player used to playing in the middle, like Bairstow or Buttler be more effective?

    Can Chris Woakes be an effective limit overs all-rounder, particularly considering his county (list A) record?

    Does Matt Prior deserve yet another chance, despite being consistently poor for England in limited overs games?

    Do we really want Luke Wright bowling 4 overs in a T20 (he seems only to bowl the odd over in Big Bash) and is batting 7th making the most of one of the most sort-after batsmen in the format?

    Jonathan Trott, Joe Root and Samit Patel might feel very unlucky to be left out.

  • Shan on January 14, 2013, 18:19 GMT

    Mark, You may be referring to Yardy who suffered from depression and has not been seen since. His left arm spin was useful in the world T20 in 2010 and he is a decent performer. Hopefully, he will recover soon and play for England again.

  • Atiq on January 14, 2013, 17:47 GMT

    MY team ODI 1. *A Cook 2.C Kieswetter’s(WK)3. K Pietersen 4. I Bell 5.E Morgan 6.Jonny Bairstow 7. J Buttler 8.G Swann 9.S Broad 10.J Anderson 11. S Finn

    As a back up 1. A Hales 2.J Root 3.Benn Stokes 4.S Pattel 5.J Tredwell 6.JW Dernbach 7.C Woakes

    England Should have this team for 2015 World Cup In Aus/NZ M Prior (wk)he is really good for test

  • Tumo on January 14, 2013, 17:23 GMT

    Very harsh to say Chris Woakes didn't impress, 6-45 against Australia (the second best figures in ODI's by an England player) is definitely impressing, think you're well off the mark there. Also showed maturity and ability with the bat, something the rest of the England bowlers lack, and has better control than Bresnan & Dernbach, as well as being less petulant than the latter and more reliable than the former. Worth trying a few other seamers such as James Harris though...

  • Paul on January 14, 2013, 17:19 GMT

    Tredwell ahead of Swann in the batting line-up? That has to be a mistake.

  • Sedders on January 14, 2013, 15:20 GMT

    Finally, someone talking sense!

  • Martyn The King on January 14, 2013, 13:33 GMT

    Phil Taylor throws good darts, pick him

  • Ishrat on January 14, 2013, 12:29 GMT

    Great analysis, you hit the nail on the head when you talk about Jade Dernbach. The guy has too many varieties and can get caught up in his own tricks. To give him the last overs of a match is criminal. Whatever happened to Onions and the other tall hit the deck bowler who was replaced by Bresnan. Yes Matt Prior needs to be keeping wickets in all three formats.

  • Tim on January 14, 2013, 10:36 GMT

    Top article.

  • Mark on January 14, 2013, 10:10 GMT

    Excellent analysis. I would throw Onions into the equation as a wicket to wicket seamer who you can set fields for. Also given the apparent paucity of quality seam bowling why not play an extra spinner. What happened to the Sussex lad that bowled the left arm darts?

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  • Mark on January 14, 2013, 10:10 GMT

    Excellent analysis. I would throw Onions into the equation as a wicket to wicket seamer who you can set fields for. Also given the apparent paucity of quality seam bowling why not play an extra spinner. What happened to the Sussex lad that bowled the left arm darts?

  • Tim on January 14, 2013, 10:36 GMT

    Top article.

  • Ishrat on January 14, 2013, 12:29 GMT

    Great analysis, you hit the nail on the head when you talk about Jade Dernbach. The guy has too many varieties and can get caught up in his own tricks. To give him the last overs of a match is criminal. Whatever happened to Onions and the other tall hit the deck bowler who was replaced by Bresnan. Yes Matt Prior needs to be keeping wickets in all three formats.

  • Martyn The King on January 14, 2013, 13:33 GMT

    Phil Taylor throws good darts, pick him

  • Sedders on January 14, 2013, 15:20 GMT

    Finally, someone talking sense!

  • Paul on January 14, 2013, 17:19 GMT

    Tredwell ahead of Swann in the batting line-up? That has to be a mistake.

  • Tumo on January 14, 2013, 17:23 GMT

    Very harsh to say Chris Woakes didn't impress, 6-45 against Australia (the second best figures in ODI's by an England player) is definitely impressing, think you're well off the mark there. Also showed maturity and ability with the bat, something the rest of the England bowlers lack, and has better control than Bresnan & Dernbach, as well as being less petulant than the latter and more reliable than the former. Worth trying a few other seamers such as James Harris though...

  • Atiq on January 14, 2013, 17:47 GMT

    MY team ODI 1. *A Cook 2.C Kieswetter’s(WK)3. K Pietersen 4. I Bell 5.E Morgan 6.Jonny Bairstow 7. J Buttler 8.G Swann 9.S Broad 10.J Anderson 11. S Finn

    As a back up 1. A Hales 2.J Root 3.Benn Stokes 4.S Pattel 5.J Tredwell 6.JW Dernbach 7.C Woakes

    England Should have this team for 2015 World Cup In Aus/NZ M Prior (wk)he is really good for test

  • Shan on January 14, 2013, 18:19 GMT

    Mark, You may be referring to Yardy who suffered from depression and has not been seen since. His left arm spin was useful in the world T20 in 2010 and he is a decent performer. Hopefully, he will recover soon and play for England again.

  • Lewis on January 14, 2013, 19:28 GMT

    A good analysis of the areas England need to improve in order to be successful in these formats.

    Of course the teams are up for endless debate but I do have some criticisms of your teams.

    First, do we think that Tredwell and Swann, two very similar bowlers, give enough variety to the attack?

    Does moving the position of Alex Hales really give him the best chance to succeed or would a player used to playing in the middle, like Bairstow or Buttler be more effective?

    Can Chris Woakes be an effective limit overs all-rounder, particularly considering his county (list A) record?

    Does Matt Prior deserve yet another chance, despite being consistently poor for England in limited overs games?

    Do we really want Luke Wright bowling 4 overs in a T20 (he seems only to bowl the odd over in Big Bash) and is batting 7th making the most of one of the most sort-after batsmen in the format?

    Jonathan Trott, Joe Root and Samit Patel might feel very unlucky to be left out.