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Finn must fly

Some say he is 24, with time on his side. Others say his Test career is going sideways

Rob Smyth

July 15, 2013

Comments: 47 | Text size: A | A

Steven Finn won an lbw appeal against Jacques Kallis, England v South Africa, 3rd Investec Test, Lord's, 3rd day, August 18, 2012
Steven Finn: unplayable on some days, inexcusable on others © Getty Images
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Try telling Steven Finn that victory has a thousand fathers but defeat is an orphan. As England celebrated their victory over Australia at Trent Bridge he will have felt if not alone then certainly detached. Finn's relief at victory was probably greater than anybody's - had England lost, he might have been a Fred Tate for the 21st century - but even that will have been overshadowed by the insecurity that surrounds his Test career and his apparently recurring Ashes nightmare.

The final day at Trent Bridge was almost humiliating for Finn. Alastair Cook only trusted him to bowl two of the 39.5 overs, and they disappeared for 25 to get Australia back into a game that they had apparently lost. Then he dropped Brad Haddin at deep backward square leg, a difficult chance but one he would have taken to the grave had England been beaten.

Finn had allowed Australia back into the match once already, with a poor spell to Phillip Hughes and Ashton Agar on Thursday. He went from taking the new ball in the first innings to not getting a bowl until the 29th over of the second. Even allowing for the context - Stuart Broad's first-innings injury and Graeme Swann's early use in the second innings - it felt like a significant demotion. For a bowler there are few things as hurtful as realising his captain does not trust him. The match wasn't an unmitigated disaster - Finn bowled a superb five-over spell on Saturday evening - but it wasn't far off, and his place in the team will be England's main point of discussion ahead of Lord's.

There are two ways of looking at Finn: he is either 24, with time on his side, or he has been a Test cricketer for three years - Jonathan Trott and Graeme Swann, established stars, only began their Test careers seven and 14 months before Finn - and is going sideways. The sense that he has not progressed is most acute in an Ashes series, for Finn is enduring the same problems as on the 2010-11 tour of Australia, when he was dropped for the fourth Test despite being the leading wicket-taker in the series. The reason was simple: he was a walking four-ball. The problem has re-occurred two and a half years later. Finn has been set aside for potential greatness for a few years; his development is taking a frustratingly long time.

In the age of media training, sportsmen are not encouraged to be lavish with the truth, yet Finn recently suggested that he had not developed as he had hoped. His overall career record is fine - 90 Test wickets at 29.40, a lower average than any of his team-mates - yet a more relevant statistic is his economy rate of 3.65. This compares unfavourably to James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Tim Bresnan and Chris Tremlett, who are all between 2.90 and 3.10, although Graham Onions concedes runs at a similar rate to Finn.

That does not fit the ethos of a side obsessed with bowling dry. The peculiar thing is that, on paper, Finn is David Saker's driest dream: he could have been invented by boffins trying to create a parsimonious fast bowler, and when he first arrived as an international player, he cited Glenn McGrath as the bowler he wanted to be.

Increasingly Steve Harmison seems a more relevant point of comparison. Both make the little girl with the little curl seem like the model of equilibrium. Finn's outwardly secure exterior suggested he was a different animal to Harmison, yet increasingly he seems to suffer damaging lapses in confidence. His two overs on the final day against Australia were those of a man whose head had gone. Yet at other times he has been unplayable, most notably during a wonderful spell against South Africa at Lord's a year ago. He has excelled at times in one-day cricket, although he was dropped from the England side during the Champions Trophy.

 
 
The most encouraging thing for Finn is that, generally speaking, he is good at the things you can't teach and not so good at those you can
 

Much of Finn's success in one-day cricket has come from a drive-inviting length, whereas in Tests he frequently bowls too short. McGrath is an obvious reference point for a tall fast bowler, but in some ways Finn is more reminiscent of Jason Gillespie. At his best, Gillespie bowled a much fuller length than almost all new-ball bowlers, allowing the snarling seam movement to do the rest. This is something Finn does not do nearly enough at Test level. It is not possible for Finn to simply change his default setting; Finn needs to train his brain over time.

In the short term it might be beneficial to replace Finn with Bresnan, merciful even, yet it's hard to know how that would impact his confidence in the medium-term, especially as it would be the second time he had been dropped in the middle of an Ashes series. After that spell against South Africa at Lord's it seemed that Finn had left Bresnan in his slipstream forever, and that he would always play when England were picking three seamers. After a decent series against India, he was poor in New Zealand and has not recovered.

Finn shortened his run-up during that tour, which has been cited as the main problem by many; equally significant if not more so, however, is Finn's relative lack of tactical awareness. England, particularly Saker and Anderson, are big on understanding the game and reacting to circumstances. This is one of Finn's weakest points, and was demonstrated again during Agar's innings on Friday.

The most encouraging thing for Finn is that, generally speaking, he is good at the things you can't teach and not so good at those you can. There is no need to panic yet. In Anderson he had a perfect role model. The two are incomparable as bowlers, yet their early careers had a similar arc: a burst of success followed by some lost years as they attempt to understand their game and their action.

Anderson went through some extremely dark times, far darker than Finn is going through at the moment. At Finn's age, Anderson had not been a regular in the team for over three years and had 46 Test wickets at 38.39; at Trent Bridge yesterday he went from extremely good to truly great. Anderson may have been born with a degree of greatness in him, but ultimately he had to achieve it. There is no reason why Finn should not do the same.

Rob Smyth is the author of The Spirit of Cricket - What Makes Cricket the Greatest Game on Earth

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Posted by   on (July 16, 2013, 20:06 GMT)

Finn will play in the Lords Test...of that there is no doubt...

Posted by Stouffer on (July 16, 2013, 15:33 GMT)

I'd leave him out of the next test, but rather than picking Bresnan I'd go with Onions. Onions will bowl it in the channel more often, making batsmen play at balls they'd probably want to leave at Lord's. Forget any extra runs Bresnan might get, we need the 4 best bowlers.

Posted by ArthursAshes on (July 16, 2013, 12:39 GMT)

Finn bowls well for England at Lords, his home ground. Stats show that he picks up wickets, he has one five wicket haul and five times 4 wickets. Not a bad return for playing just 5 Tests at Lords. 29 wickets at an average of around 18.

Bresnan does not compare. 5 wickets for 330 runs at Lords, ave 66.

Onions has 10 wickets for 193 at Lords, ave 19.3. V Australia, 2009 he took 3-91 in the match at over 4 an over.

Bresnan would be the safe option as he would extend England's batting and he might bowl tighter, but the Lords wicket takers are Finn and Onions.

If it were any ground but Lords I suspect Finn might be dropped to find his form in County cricket, but his Lords record and the fact that England are usually fairly consistent in not resorting to knee-jerk decisions after one game. After all, if many England "fans" had their way Bell would have been dropped for this last Test and his match winning contribution would have been lost. England would be 1-0 down.

Posted by H_Z_O on (July 16, 2013, 9:45 GMT)

@Jono Makim Wouldn't cut him loose, he's definitely a future leader of the attack for me. However, I'd leave him out at Lord's for his own good. Your boys, as they've done so often in the past, have gotten in his head. Like Warne did with Bell.

Bell eventually got dropped and came back a much stronger, much better player. It wasn't that he lacked those qualities before, just that he'd begun doubting himself. He himself has said as much.

I think I'd let Finn have a good bowl in County Cricket, try and get him fired up and confident. We've still got 8 more Tests after Lord's, and like last time I can see him being very good on the harder, bouncier pitches in Australia. We dropped him back then because he lacked control, but if he can find it before we go back, it could be a big factor in deciding where the Ashes finally end up.

Posted by H_Z_O on (July 16, 2013, 9:38 GMT)

@Chris_P I don't think too many English fans would argue with you that Finn's not a better bowler than Bresnan. However, right now Bresnan is probably a better bet to give the captain what he really needs; control. The biggest reason Cook kept on bowling Anderson wasn't just his wicket-taking, but the fact that nobody else could give him that control. Finn, for all his attributes as a wicket-taker (and he's a good one) hasn't got that ability.

@Greatest_Game He's Alistair Cook, the greatest captain evar! I'm amazed Cooky doesn't get more criticism for his tactical issues. Fantastic leader and batsman as captain, but his tactics are shockingly bad.

@Int.Curator agree about an injury, but the ball barely swung at TB, conventionally at least. First day aside, it was mostly reverse.

Can't believe people criticising Broad's bowling. Watson and Clarke in the second innings to good deliveries (Finn got Cowan and Watson to loose shots), broke the final wicket partnership in the first.

Posted by Int.Curator on (July 16, 2013, 8:01 GMT)

This article outlines the depth of english cricket bowling. Selecting an injured Broad over Bresnan, Finn , Swann and Anderson. I really can't see theses bowlers getting the job done if the ball doesn't swing for Anderson or he gets injured. It will be a long ashes series for england.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (July 16, 2013, 3:19 GMT)

@ Herbet. Very interesting comments on the height and work ethic of the tall bowlers. SA's tall skinny quick, Morkel, is 6' 5" (same as Broad, 1" under Finn,) yet he is consistently out-bowled by little 5' 10" Steyn. He also blows hot & cold, but has had some time - debuted in 06 - & applied himself to steadily tighten up his game. Even so, he still has expensive & unproductive spells.

Steyn & Anderson & similar in work ethic, skills development, & tactical thinking. Neither had an easy career start & both had to work at their game to reach the heights they have. Both are well disciplined, bowl very accurately, & are very economical.

Interesting parallels - you make a good point.

Posted by Greatest_Game on (July 16, 2013, 2:51 GMT)

I'm puzzled by this talk of Finn's "Finn's relative lack of tactical awareness" I thought it was the skipper's job to be 'tactically aware,' and to put a boot up the arse of a tall bloke who is pitching them too short.

Posted by Chris_P on (July 16, 2013, 0:37 GMT)

From someone on the other side of the fence to England, Finn represents the future. Does any young other bowler have the potential to run through a side? He has an abundance of talent & has to be nurtured, cricket will be the overall winner when he realizes his potential. Almost all good bowlers have taken their time to get to their top. McGrath spent a couple of seasons trundling before he stepped up, Steyn wasn't the success he is now & in Finn, there is something that I believe can elevate him. Sorry, but I don't see that in Bresnan.

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (July 16, 2013, 0:03 GMT)

I guess Finn need to back to his old run up where he was falling over after his delivery stride every 3-4 balls

Posted by H_Z_O on (July 15, 2013, 22:50 GMT)

@Punjabi Munda Ashok Dinda averages 51 in ODI cricket with an economy rate of over 6 and a strike rate approaching 50. He hasn't played a Test.

Finn averages 26.94 in ODI, an economy rate of 4.67 and a strike rate under 35. It isn't even a close comparison.

If we're going to compare an England bowler to Ashok Dinda, it'd be Dernbach, and even he has a better average and strike rate. And despite the fact he keeps getting brought into discussions of the relative bowling depth for England and Australia in Tests, there's almost no chance of him ever playing a Test for us.

Finn has the potential to be world class. After 11 Tests Pattinson has 45 wickets at 24.55 and a strike rate of 45.2. After his first 11 Tests Finn had 46 wickets at 26.23 and a strike rate of 39.7. I'm not saying Finn's better than Pattinson, but he's not a bad bowler either.

His issues are similar to Broad's, bowling too short, and I wonder how much of that is to do with England's desperate desire for an "enforcer".

Posted by landl47 on (July 15, 2013, 22:27 GMT)

Finn is a big unit and needs to get into a good rhythm to be effective. He can't do that in short spells. He also needs to work out how to bowl a length which is most effective for the wicket he is playing on and I'll give him a tip: on slow, low wickets, it's not halfway down the pitch.

He's still a young bowler and needs help. He needs to be told what the captain wants so he can try to deliver that. I blame Cook in part for the awful spell he bowled to Agar and Hughes- Cook should have been in his ear telling him to pitch it up (unless it was Cook's idea to bowl short, in which case Cook is doubly to blame). The spell against Haddin was different- Haddin, who was well-set, decided to have a slog and it came off. Good for Haddin, and in test cricket good players are going to do that to youngsters sometimes.

Finn has a lot of potential. It might be he needs a bit more time to realize it.

Posted by china_cricket on (July 15, 2013, 22:17 GMT)

It's psychological development for Finn, if he's thinking positively. Not a great last day for him, but yes, a spell in county after this next test if he doesn't perform. Agree with other posters who think he'll be back, erm, again.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 21:52 GMT)

I think people are being quite hard on Finn. Seriously, if not fully developing your early potential is his biggest crime then surely we should pointing the finger at Broad who is terribly inconsistent. Has Broad learnt ANYTHING as a test bowler since he debuted?

Posted by Exfactor44 on (July 15, 2013, 20:24 GMT)

I have to say I'm with the runup crowd. Finn has a similar build to Morne Morkel and had a very similar action originally. SA changed Morkels runup and it looked horrendous for ~1.5 years, very unnatural. Finns looks like that now, he is really forcing the placement of his legs and still has no real 'bound' to transition from running to bowling. Seriously, he needs to relax, be left alone and get on with learning to run in again. I don't think we'll see his best until this is sorted out.

Posted by SDHM on (July 15, 2013, 19:41 GMT)

Has to be said England aren't exactly playing on strips that help him - the three we've seen this summer have ranged from relatively slow to painfully slow, and the ones in NZ & India were pretty similar. That said, as Rob points out, what frustrates me most is his complete lack of tactical sense: his insistence on whacking it in short when it's clearly not working being one example. Ironically he never used to struggle with that; when he came into the side he often bowled full tosses trying to pitch the ball up. The action tinkering definitely hasn't helped. A spell back at Middlesex truly nailing his action would help.

Posted by worthingwire on (July 15, 2013, 17:48 GMT)

I think he should get a chance to redeem himself at Lord's. If he nauses that up, then he should be replaced for the 3rd Test.

Posted by josphe on (July 15, 2013, 17:32 GMT)

I think too much is being made of Finn's poor performance in the last match..He is a genuine wicket taking bowler and despite all what has been said about his poor performances he still has an average of under 30 which Jimmy only achieved last match..He is a young bowler and is still learning his trade..I think he is just in a poor run of form and the backing of the management team is just the what he may need to boost his confidence..I also think that going back to Bresnan would be a huge mistake as he is a shadow of the bowler he was a couple of years back..Even after his surgery he hasn't proved to me that he is ready to make his test comeback..If Finn is to be dropped, which i advice against, Onions would be a better option that Bres.

Posted by SoverBerry2 on (July 15, 2013, 17:23 GMT)

The last sentence tells the story. "Anderson may have been born with a degree of greatness in him, but ultimately he had to achieve it.". Finn need to work hard and learn his strengths and weakness. Good Test bowlers like Anderson, Steyn, Zaheer Khan etc. achieved success after the initial burst and fall.

Posted by Chaffers on (July 15, 2013, 17:05 GMT)

The Trent bridge wicket didn't suit Finn, though who wouldn't want a young, tall fast bowler who has accuracy on his side?

His stats at Lords are compelling, 29 wickets at 20 runs apiece and a strike rate of 33.

England would be mad to drop him, they had the tools to beat Australia at Trent Bridge and Finn will be a big part of that toolbox at Lords. His average for the season so far at Lords is a shade under 23 runs per wicket and a strike rate of 47 balls...

Posted by RichardG on (July 15, 2013, 16:52 GMT)

offkey - very few have been batting Finn's corner, regardless of their county allegiances. Bairstow didn't have a great test, but he was our second top scorer in the first innings and stayed with Bell for a decent length of time in the second. He also bought himself some time with his performances against NZ, and he gives us a bit more in the field. The sad fact is, however, that 11 players can contribute with the bat, but only four or five with the ball. And if one of your four is misfiring, then you have to be ruthless. I'd be tempted to keep Finn on at Lord's. The slope tends to work to the benefit of tall bowlers. But if the pitch looks a belter, then Bresnan's ability to plug away at one end while Jimmy/Swann/Broad attack from the other might be the way to go. Australia have a lot of attacking batsmen who don't like getting bogged down.

Posted by offkey on (July 15, 2013, 16:30 GMT)

To RichardG. Vaughan wasn't exactly batting in Finn's corner either but I accept you could be right about Boycott's preference for Onions. For me Baistow had an indifferent match but little was said by this esteemed pair about his shortcomings. I am happy to accede Finn may benefit from a spell in county cricket but personally I would give him one more chance at Lords where theoretically a lot more will be in his favour.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 16:13 GMT)

Finn is ashok dinda of India. Good occasionally but a walking four-runs otherwise. As long as he is in England team they cannot sustain pressure on opposition.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 15:36 GMT)

Your lead comment from Mitty2 defies belief. Finn had pace first innings but the rhythm never looked good. In the second innings, his run up was dreadful, ambling in like a man going out for a morning newspaper. With a change in run up comes a period of adjustment and quite seriously I'd drop him back to county cricket and tell him to bowl his tail off. Someone like Ian Bell reacted very positively when he got dropped back to domestic level not so long back and I think Finn needs it too. An Ashes series is not the place to be trying to get used to a new run up or action.

Posted by RichardG on (July 15, 2013, 14:31 GMT)

offkey: "Professional Yorkshiremen such as Geoff Boycott were all too ready to get on his back no doubt preferring their man Bresnan"

If his pre-Ashes interviews on Cricinfo are anything to go by, Boycs would replace Finn with Onions, as he rates him higher. He may have changed his mind since, but Boycs doesn't change his mind often (and he's often bemoaned England for not playing Onions more). Can you name me any other of these 'professional Yorkshiremen' clamouring for Bresnan to be included?

Posted by offkey on (July 15, 2013, 13:57 GMT)

I felt a bit sorry for Finn yesterday - I just wonder how many First Class Overs he's had this summer. Bowlers need bowling time out in the middle and this Trent Bridge track could almost have been tailor made to negate his attributes. Professional Yorkshiremen such as Geoff Boycott were all too ready to get on his back no doubt preferring their man Bresnan despite the fact the hefty bowling all rounder had a dismal Champions Trophy and averages an unhealthy 66 at Lords. I'd keep Finn in the 11 at his home ground which recently has had more pace and bounce than elsewhere. Anderson is the cricketer he is today as much as a result of his plentiful bad times as well as the good ones.

Posted by arup_g on (July 15, 2013, 13:14 GMT)

Finn deserves another chance. It's not like he bowled THAT badly! He did get Rogers and Cowan in 2 balls in the first innings, and England DID win, so why change a winning XI? He will do fine at Lords too as he has the knowledge of the conditions. Finn is in my opinion more feared by opponents than Bresnan or Onions, purely because he has the ability to generate real pace and bounce. The only other bowler on his level is Tremlett who seems to have dropped off the radar of the selectors due to injury. Also, none of the Australian top order are extremly tall, so Finn will cause real problems if he gets it right. Stick with him and watch him deliver the goods.

Posted by RichardG on (July 15, 2013, 11:54 GMT)

An excellent article. The comparison with Harmison is both accurate and worrying. England continued to call for Harmison for too long, and thus he never really had to earn his place in the team. He just needed to continue being tall and bowling somewhere over 80mph. If Tremlett returns to fitness and form (I've yet to be convinced) then England might be better served leaving Finn to re-find himself in county cricket (much like Anderson did in 2006/07) and be a bit fresher for the tour this winter where he'll get bouncier pitches. As Rob says, all is not lost, but there's still a fair bit for Finn to find.

Posted by TrevorHickman on (July 15, 2013, 11:19 GMT)

Get Tremlett in the squad. He's had a relatively unspectacular return from injury but the Aussies really fear him. I took a trip to the Bradman museum in Bowral recently and there is a full size picture of him blown up on one of the walls. He's 31 so probably only good for the next 9 games against Australia. Would love to see him tearing into their middle order.

Posted by salazar555 on (July 15, 2013, 11:16 GMT)

Finn has the raw tools but he's wet behind the ears, he hasn't put the hard yards in at county level. In the first innings to Agar he was bowling short with 3 slips and no cover for the hook and pull shot. I don't think the pitches are helping him either. Slow, low pitches and not he's even opening the bowling. If he's going to bowl it needs to be on fast, bouncy tracks and he needs to bowl with the new ball. If he's going to be the 3rd seamer and bowl with a ball that's 25 overs old on slow, low pitches then it's not worth picking him.

Posted by njr1330 on (July 15, 2013, 11:10 GMT)

'HERBERT' "why not look for a new Sidebottom?" ...why not try the old Sidebottom?! Brian Clough used to say that England spent 10 years trying to find someone to play the 'Teddy Sheringham' role - but never asked Teddy Sheringham!

Posted by CricketBadger on (July 15, 2013, 10:22 GMT)

I think Finn will come good - very much like Broad, in terms of needing the encouragement to pitch it up fuller rather than firing in the shorter length that gets taken for runs. As a replacement I think Bres might come in at some point as he can keep the scoring down, he may nip out a wicket, but the England bowling relies on drying up the runs, so whoever is at the other end can take the wickets. Amazing display by Englands bowling unit in the first test. First innings, Broad was out and Finn was leaking, second innings, Cook was reluctant to bowl Finn - we took 20 wickets with one arm tied behind our back! Worried about all this talk about Rankin, as a Bears fan I grow frustrated at his 4+ economy in most games - what if he were up against decent batsmen - we might mock the Aussie batting but they'd eat Rankin alive - visions of Watson carting him for 8 an over!

Posted by Romanticstud on (July 15, 2013, 8:52 GMT)

Finn has a lot of good points notably the bowling he did against SA at Lords ... but then when he is off he is notably off ... He needs to learn from Anderson on consistency otherwise he will be swept away with the high tide and never return to the lineup ... with Broad, Anderson, Tremlett and Bresnan already rather stable in the squad and the likes of Panesar and Swann in the spin department it may look rather bleak for the likes of Finn unless he becomes consistent.

Posted by th0mascricket on (July 15, 2013, 8:42 GMT)

I disagree with Mitty2. I think Finn's action is his problem. His run up is nice and smooth, but there's so much going in in the coil and release phase, all arms and bustle, it's never going to be a repeatable action that delivers the ball on a six pence time and time again. The whole thing looks a bit un-coordinated and erratic, to me and the stats bear this out.

Posted by Cyril_Knight on (July 15, 2013, 8:22 GMT)

England will persevere with Finn for a while at least (he may be dropped but will always be in the squads). His natural attributes enable him to bowl wicket taking deliveries regularly. However this masks his inability to bowl to a plan, something of course that England are very big on.

But who can replace him? Who can bowl either these wicket taking balls more effectively or who can bowl to the plans better? Bresnan can bowl to the plan but will not get the wickets. The same for Onions. England like Rankin, he appears closest on both counts but is largely unproven and injury-prone.

When Tremlett was fit and firing and ready to step in it was problem solved, however he is finished. So what happens? Flower and Saker will assess Finn in training. If his head is fixed he will play at Lord's, if not then it will be Bresnan. But will England's attack improve as a result?

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (July 15, 2013, 7:46 GMT)

Please don't compare Finn to the mediocre Ishant Sharma whose average is almost 38. And besides, Finn already has more 5 fers than Sharma having played a lot less matches. But this match illustrates why most England fans still think Finn is a long way from being the finished article unlike the subcontinent contingent who only see highlights or the occasional 3-4 over burst from him and rate him higher than Jimmy. Fans like the flashy stroke maker, the fast bowler who bowls at 90mph breaking the stumps...flashiness gets you on espn sportscenter, consistency gets you in the hall of fame.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 6:44 GMT)

Agreed Finn has an expensive Economy Rate but keeping Averages the same, it only means he has an excellent Strike Rate. He Strike about once every 48 balls which is 8 overs which is fantastic.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 6:39 GMT)

Ridiculous to try and equate Finn with Swann and Trott. Swann and Trott both came into the test team with a decade or so of FC cricket behind them, knowing their respective games inside out. Finn came as a wet behind the ears outstanding natural talent. The guy is still trying to learn his game, he thrives on bounce with a little away swing, neither were on offer here on this dead track and it is only right to expect the senior men in the team to take up the slack with their experience, which the did, team game and all. Cut Finn loose now and its three years wasted, he will be the attack leader in a few years time.

Posted by jr1972 on (July 15, 2013, 5:55 GMT)

@Mitty2, totally agree with your summary of Finn's attributes and the Finn and Broad situation. It's one or the other for me, and at the moment that has to be Broad. Onions would be an ideal choice for Lords.

Posted by Herbet on (July 15, 2013, 5:23 GMT)

Maybe there is something in common between Finn and Broad; their height and their age. Both are very tall, and both came to international cricket very young. So to an extent they have never had to try. They can be very effective by virtue of their height, which they were gifted obviously and didn't have to train for. Now, they have to develop something else, and maybe they don't have the talent. Anderson relies on skill, rather than freakish physical traits. England went years trying to pick bowlers who were as quick as possible, and ended up with dross like Mahmood and Plunkett. Then belatedly Sidebottom got a game. Now we seem to go for skyscrapers like these two, Tremlett and Boyd Rankin. Why not look for a new Sidebottom.

Posted by hotcric01 on (July 15, 2013, 5:20 GMT)

Don't judge him too early.There are no so many bowlers who have good height,pace and bounce like Finn.He needs confidence.Just look what happens in next test at Lord's which is a very good place for him to bowl.

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 5:04 GMT)

Finn is the Ishant Sharma of England. Brilliant sometimes, sub-par generally.

Posted by Snowbadger15 on (July 15, 2013, 4:40 GMT)

Finn should do well on the lords test, his record there is amazing but i agree with mitty2 and that he can be very inconsistent at times

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 3:57 GMT)

England has persisted with Broad even though his initiation in international cricket was a baptism by fire (6 sixes in an over!). Not many teams in the world would have stuck with a player who went through such a phase. And Broad has repaid the faith shown in him. Finn should feel hard done by if English team doesn't back him!

Posted by   on (July 15, 2013, 3:52 GMT)

English have a good bowler in Anderson others are average with Swann not the same as old . Broad is not consistent and over rated. They got away with a weak Aussie team

Posted by browners76 on (July 15, 2013, 3:14 GMT)

I think England should just play Tremlett instead, as a like for like replacement while Finn works himself out. Tremlett probably only has 2-3 yrs cricket in him due to injury problems and would cause Australia major headaches. England need to be pro-active here and not hope Finn comes good, he clearly needs overs under his belt back at middlesex. It's a major frustration for sure, like Caddick or Harmison he has all the attributes to be a world beater, lets hope he fulfills his promise.

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