West Indies v England, 3rd T20, Barbados March 12, 2014

The Bell tolls for England

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Ian Bell could use the final T20 match in Bridgetown as an unexpected audition for World Twenty20

Match Facts

March 13, Bridgetown
Start time 1400 local (1800GMT)

Big Picture

There could hardly be a greater gulf in expectations as West Indies and England meet for the last time before they head to Bangladesh for World Twenty20. West Indies have done enough to encourage expectations that they can put up a powerful defence of the trophy they won in similar conditions in Sri Lanka 17 months ago, whereas England's chances are held to be as poor as those of the football team heading for their own World Cup in Brazil in a few months' time.

England, after five successive T20 defeats, could turn to an unlikely saviour. Ian Bell has not played a Twenty20 international since January 2011, but expectations are high that he will take part in England's final warm-up match, even if his coach, Ashley Giles, has warned that he is not quite ready after being with the squad for only a few days.

England have been overcome by West Indies' greater weight of stroke in their defeats in the first two matches of this three-match series, and Bell, a slight figure with no penchant for six-hitting, is not about to change that, but he is regarded as one of England's most skilful players of spin, and that talent is in short supply.

We must wait to see whether Bell, called up to replace the injured Joe Root, can make good use of his experience -- almost 100 Tests and approaching 150 ODIs - in the shortest format, but for all his ability, his inclusion after being ignored so long seems to illustrate England's desperation for any sort of stability at the top of the order rather than a conviction that they have alighted on a new super-powered approach.

Form guide

(completed matches, most recent first)
West Indies WWWLL
England LLLLL

Watch out for

There is an ebullience about Darren Sammy, West Indies' captain, which wins approval from the neutral supporter. His unbeaten 30 from nine balls at Kensington Oval on Tuesday settled the second T20 and barring a reversal of fortune in the final encounter has ensured that he will lead the squad in Bangladesh in hearty frame of mind. If his batting can be potent, his bowling is vulnerable and his fielding inconsistent but West Indies have responded to his leadership in this form of the game.

What are we to make of the form of Alex Hales as he prepares for Bangladesh? Hales has had a disappointing six months, his rating for a time as the No 1 Twenty20 batsman in the world is hard to credit, and it is far from certain that Chittagong's slow turners will suit him. He showed hints of a return to form on Tuesday, but if England are to regain confidence in their top order, his resurgence would be the easiest way to achieve it.

Team news

With the series already won, it would be a surprise if West Indies gambled on the fitness of Sunil Narine for the final match. Far better to rest him for the matches that matter. Johnson Charles and Andre Fletcher are still awaiting a chance in the top order and, as well as the top five have played, there must be a temptation to rest Dwayne Smith and give one of them some match time.

West Indies (possible) 1 Chris Gayle, 2 Dwayne Smith, 3 Marlon Samuels, 4 Lendl Simmons, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 7 Darren Sammy (capt), 8 Andre Russell, 9 Krishmar Santokie, 10 Ravi Rampaul, 11 Samuel Badree

Moeen Ali did not bowl in the second match and did not cover himself in glory with the bat; he seems the obvious man to stand down if England give Ian Bell a run. That switch might also lead England to strengthen their bowling by substituting Ben Stokes for the struggling Luke Wright. It is only conjecture, but now that the series is lost, why not give Chris Jordan a first international appearance in his native island? It would seem churlish not to.

England (possible) 1 Alex Hales, 2 Michael Lumb, 3 Ian Bell, 4 Eoin Morgan (capt), 5 Jos Buttler (wk), 6 Ravi Bopara, 7 Ben Stokes, 8 Tim Bresnan, 9 James Tredwell, 10 Chris Jordan, 11 Stephen Parry

Pitch and conditions

More of the same: a decent pitch for T20, with a hint of turn and uneven bounce, and boundaries that seem to shrink when West Indies are batting.

Quotes

"We'd be naive and stupid to think that probably every team we come up against is not going to open up with spin against us.''
Ashley Giles, England's one-day coach, braces himself for the inevitable during World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.

"He has been sitting on the sidelines but everytime he gets an opportunity he takes it. He's given the selectors a headache."
Darren Sammy, West Indies' captain, on the claims of Krishmar Santokie for a regular spot in the side.

David Hopps is the UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 20:22 GMT

    @Vinod_Fab on (March 13, 2014, 12:27 GMT) I've been wanting Buttler up the order for ages but today he and Morgan (Buttler in particular) looked out of sorts. I like the idea of our most powerful batsmen being given time to get in. Buttler and Morgan are different to Wright/Hales etc in that they have deft touches in them too

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 20:13 GMT

    @Rally_Windies on (March 13, 2014, 13:12 GMT) Sammy often seems to contribute something with bat or ball and sometimes both , from the games I've seen him involved in. I dont follow WI cricket so cant comment on him hiding away but he was responsible for finishing the game the other day and the ODI match WI won , he dried up the runs when England were cruising. Maybe there's more than just coincidence in dry periods happening when Sammy bowls? If he is in a "shouldn't bowl"category then surely batsmen would get after him more? Even if he comes into the attack when the runs are drying up he still usually keeps it dry judging by the stats.

  • on March 13, 2014, 18:10 GMT

    india will win the cup as there is no hope of them doing so....

  • indianzen on March 13, 2014, 16:36 GMT

    WI are serious contenders for cup this year as well. Aussies vs WI and Ind vs Pak will definitely be a fun to watch...

  • Lord_mac on March 13, 2014, 16:25 GMT

    @Asma Aziz - not the case. Building a side around a one-man maverick is not the way to go. You recall the games that Pietersen won, but have totally forgotten all the games he lost by playing a silly shot at the wrong time - which is why Bopara has a better average - and has taken wickets as well. Pietersen didn't fail "once or twice", he failed most of the time. Go look at the figures.

    Secondly, Pietersen's game is based on very fast hand-eye coordination and risky stroke selection, not conventional technique. Why is this significant? Because as he gets older, he will decline faster than those whose fundamental technique is superior. That decline is already in evidence in all three departments of the game. We've had the best of Pietersen, it was great to watch, but while we might have got another year or two out of him, sooner or later he'd have to go, and he's accelerated that process by being a difficult person to have around.

  • tutorial on March 13, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    @Kitten Sammy's batting average in t20i is12 maybe 13 now scene the last game, Sammy had the opportunity to bat and bowl before Russell in both games and choose not too, in my view he's hiding.

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:49 GMT

    Well, well, Pieterson should have been in the team. Those who are saying, England has a great future post-pieterson, giving reasons like Bopara performed better and so on. Well, on paper, Bopara might look better but no one , let alone Bopara, has the guts and strokes of Kevin. He is indeed a match winner and not performing once or twice does not change that status at all. Just like in Asia Cup final, Jaywardne though out of form, played awesome. You can never rule Kevin out. He will always be missed and Team England do not stand a chance at World T20 without him.

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:39 GMT

    @Hira. Yes the west Indies batting order could be shuffled. However Samuel's position is perfect. You really don't want him to come in thinking about having to swing. Samuel's role is to stabilize the innings and he's doing that just fine. With regards to Sammy. He is not an exceptional captain but he works for now. The fact is that the regions best captain will not get picked. That's Jamaica's captain. He's head and shoulders above anyone else. If Sammy is ward his critics of his bowling must improve. Also fletcher should not be in the squad his present form does not qualify him a place. However I'd be happy if he proves me wrong

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:37 GMT

    Santokie has given the selectors headaches ? What he has done is to shame them for not choosing him earlier. He has been our best t20 bowler for the past 3 years and they have consistently gone with Tino Best, Shannon Gabriel and others.

    Santokie is a smart bowler and I expect him to do very well.

  • liz1558 on March 13, 2014, 15:27 GMT

    England going nowhere fast. Bangladesh will be another humiliating experience for a weak, dispirited and inexperienced side. England's footballers have more chance in Brazil. All pain and no gain until a decent coach takes over. Giles is probably a good backroom support, but he doesn't have the gravitas of Flower or Fletcher. Players only have faith in a coach add long as he gets the results. Nothing has looked good for Giles since the semi final of the champions trophy.

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 20:22 GMT

    @Vinod_Fab on (March 13, 2014, 12:27 GMT) I've been wanting Buttler up the order for ages but today he and Morgan (Buttler in particular) looked out of sorts. I like the idea of our most powerful batsmen being given time to get in. Buttler and Morgan are different to Wright/Hales etc in that they have deft touches in them too

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 20:13 GMT

    @Rally_Windies on (March 13, 2014, 13:12 GMT) Sammy often seems to contribute something with bat or ball and sometimes both , from the games I've seen him involved in. I dont follow WI cricket so cant comment on him hiding away but he was responsible for finishing the game the other day and the ODI match WI won , he dried up the runs when England were cruising. Maybe there's more than just coincidence in dry periods happening when Sammy bowls? If he is in a "shouldn't bowl"category then surely batsmen would get after him more? Even if he comes into the attack when the runs are drying up he still usually keeps it dry judging by the stats.

  • on March 13, 2014, 18:10 GMT

    india will win the cup as there is no hope of them doing so....

  • indianzen on March 13, 2014, 16:36 GMT

    WI are serious contenders for cup this year as well. Aussies vs WI and Ind vs Pak will definitely be a fun to watch...

  • Lord_mac on March 13, 2014, 16:25 GMT

    @Asma Aziz - not the case. Building a side around a one-man maverick is not the way to go. You recall the games that Pietersen won, but have totally forgotten all the games he lost by playing a silly shot at the wrong time - which is why Bopara has a better average - and has taken wickets as well. Pietersen didn't fail "once or twice", he failed most of the time. Go look at the figures.

    Secondly, Pietersen's game is based on very fast hand-eye coordination and risky stroke selection, not conventional technique. Why is this significant? Because as he gets older, he will decline faster than those whose fundamental technique is superior. That decline is already in evidence in all three departments of the game. We've had the best of Pietersen, it was great to watch, but while we might have got another year or two out of him, sooner or later he'd have to go, and he's accelerated that process by being a difficult person to have around.

  • tutorial on March 13, 2014, 16:19 GMT

    @Kitten Sammy's batting average in t20i is12 maybe 13 now scene the last game, Sammy had the opportunity to bat and bowl before Russell in both games and choose not too, in my view he's hiding.

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:49 GMT

    Well, well, Pieterson should have been in the team. Those who are saying, England has a great future post-pieterson, giving reasons like Bopara performed better and so on. Well, on paper, Bopara might look better but no one , let alone Bopara, has the guts and strokes of Kevin. He is indeed a match winner and not performing once or twice does not change that status at all. Just like in Asia Cup final, Jaywardne though out of form, played awesome. You can never rule Kevin out. He will always be missed and Team England do not stand a chance at World T20 without him.

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:39 GMT

    @Hira. Yes the west Indies batting order could be shuffled. However Samuel's position is perfect. You really don't want him to come in thinking about having to swing. Samuel's role is to stabilize the innings and he's doing that just fine. With regards to Sammy. He is not an exceptional captain but he works for now. The fact is that the regions best captain will not get picked. That's Jamaica's captain. He's head and shoulders above anyone else. If Sammy is ward his critics of his bowling must improve. Also fletcher should not be in the squad his present form does not qualify him a place. However I'd be happy if he proves me wrong

  • on March 13, 2014, 15:37 GMT

    Santokie has given the selectors headaches ? What he has done is to shame them for not choosing him earlier. He has been our best t20 bowler for the past 3 years and they have consistently gone with Tino Best, Shannon Gabriel and others.

    Santokie is a smart bowler and I expect him to do very well.

  • liz1558 on March 13, 2014, 15:27 GMT

    England going nowhere fast. Bangladesh will be another humiliating experience for a weak, dispirited and inexperienced side. England's footballers have more chance in Brazil. All pain and no gain until a decent coach takes over. Giles is probably a good backroom support, but he doesn't have the gravitas of Flower or Fletcher. Players only have faith in a coach add long as he gets the results. Nothing has looked good for Giles since the semi final of the champions trophy.

  • kitten on March 13, 2014, 14:54 GMT

    @tutorial 'Sammy doesn't have what it takes to be captain, he should be demoted, Sammy also needs to improve his batting and bowling so he can be consistent,'...

    As a matter of fact,Samm'ys batting stats for the recent ODI vs England are as follows: 1st ODO 61 runs, 2nd ODI 3, 3rd ODI 24....1st 20/20 DNB....2nd 20/20 30 runs in 9 balls...won the match for WI, and the series. Also bear in mind he bats low down the order, so does not have much time to get set. While I agree his bowling is not up to the mark, I fail to understand what the writer means by his batting, and his captaincy. He has just been instrumental in taking his team to a series win....what more can he do? Stats should always be checked before making comments. WI are on the right track as far as the 20/20 format is concerned, and let's worry about that for the moment in view of the current approaching WC in BD. Incidentally, I am not a WI supporter, but I like to see fair comments.

  • Lord_mac on March 13, 2014, 13:49 GMT

    When are these endless rambles about Pietersen ever going to stop? He's hardly played a T20 game for ages, so it's nothing new that he's not playing. We were eighth in the T20 league table before Pietersen was sacked, not as a result of it.

    And as far as ODIs are concerned, Bopara has a better record over their respective last 50 games than Pietersen, so if that doesn't put it into perspective, nothing will!

    Focus on the future, not the past. It will take time, but there will be a post-Pietersen future. The English pool of talent is not without potential.

  • Rally_Windies on March 13, 2014, 13:29 GMT

    these people keep blaming the England top order...

    but I suspect the middle and lower order would fail just as miserably against Badree ...

    The problem is the Entire NATION of ENGLAND's problem against good leg sin ...

  • Rally_Windies on March 13, 2014, 13:12 GMT

    @ JG2704 ,, Brutal Annalist is correct.... Sammy Seriously should not bowl .. If you watch his stats you may find reason for him to be an allrounder ..

    but if you watch actual games, and watch the way Sammy abuses his captaincy to bowl in the dry patches at tail enders and only ever completes his overs in low scoring games ...

    You would come to the conclusion that his stats do not actual represent his actual bowling ...

    In High scoring games with no injury, Sammy has made Simmons bowl 4 overs to "spare" himself the indignity of going for plenty runs .....

    I was disgusted when Sewag made the odi 200, that Sammy refused to bowl himself in the game even though he was fully fit........

    Sammy is a good lower order power hitter...

    But his bowling sucks .....

  • tutorial on March 13, 2014, 13:07 GMT

    Sammy doesn't have what it takes to be captain, he should be demoted, Sammy also needs to improve his batting and bowling so he can be consistent, the problem with the west indies is, when a player does well in one out of ten games he's consider a "great" player and thats why WI cricket is spiraling downward....Samuels is a class in the team who can play proper cricket shots.

  • on March 13, 2014, 12:57 GMT

    Thx cricinfo to post my comments. I well really like Sammy to have a look at the batting order. He have the 3rd t20 to make the adjustment. Go WI go all the way. I hold WI to win the world t20 for the second time.

  • rock_kamran on March 13, 2014, 12:55 GMT

    I think this eng management is non-sense. First destroyed probably their most talented young seamer finn, and then sacked KP

  • wirus on March 13, 2014, 12:37 GMT

    Eng have assisted WI in this series by not being able to get enough boundaries. In order to defend their title WI need to look seriously at batting positions, tactics and psychology. Bopara has them under his thumb at the minute and that sort of thing needs to be looked at. WI have to make use of the good starts they have been getting but it will be interesting to see what happens when the openers go cheaply. In this last match they should give others exposure by bringing in Fletcher and Charles for Gayle and Smith (who have both done well) and Cotterel and Millar for Rampaul (not so good) and Badree (great job). It would be great to see Cotterel bowling fast and taking a few wickets and to see Fletcher and Charles minus the wktkeeping burden.

  • on March 13, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    I totally believe all this comments made about Samuel. He should not be coming at 3 especially when WI have a good start. He can not rotate the strike.W I batting order Gayle, Smith, Bravo,Simmons ,Russell , Sammy , Samuel , Ramdean, then the bowlers.

  • Vinod_Fab on March 13, 2014, 12:27 GMT

    @JG2704 .. What about idea of having Morgan 1st drop, Jos 2nd drop and Bopara,Wright and Stokes to follow.. In that way,if Hales and Lumb flops then we'll have Morgan and Jos to steady the run rate with Bopara to consolidate and then again Stokes to act as catalyst at last..!!.. Batting still looks solid IMO but bowling a tad sloppy.. Tredwell looks good,broad will come back hard.I don't like the aspect of keeping bresnan as all rounder as he is not giving his best in bowling,so bring back either Jimmy or Finn or Jordan.. Bell can concentrate on ODI's and Test Matches,T20's doesnt seems to do good for his future..!!.. Either way we are missing one champ in this line up and that too in all the three formats and we all know who is that....!!!!!!..

  • Juiceoftheapple on March 13, 2014, 12:23 GMT

    Such is the woeful form of Hales and Wright, and our inability on spinning pitches, and the frequency that our lack of control fast bowlers are put to the ropes we need a huge re think. Remember Yardy, Collingwood, Sidebottom and Kieswetter when we won. Really difficult bowlers to time the big strokes off, guys in form, now we have only Bopara and Tredwell to do a containing job, and the rest will get spanked. Surely Trego in for Wright. And the ommission of Patel is rediculous. A fast bowler with a bit more teeth and pace like Jordan is clearly a good thing. If we dont take a different approach to picking guys who can only smash apart seam bowling, and spray it about fast bowlers, we are going to get anhilated in Bangledesh. Only Morgan, Buttler, Bopara, Tredwell, Broad and Lumb should be anywhere near the squad at the moment.

  • gimme-a-greentop on March 13, 2014, 11:08 GMT

    I've seen Sammy be either mind-blowingly good in the field (has taken a fair number of really amazing catches) or totally woeful (think dropping Sehwag on his way to ODI 200). "Inconsistent' doesn't really adequately describe those two extremes. As a neutral spectator, I think he is a slightly underrated player. He achieves above the level expected of him, like NZ in World Cups.

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 10:08 GMT

    Being as they say the pitch is said to be the same as the last few games and our pacers have been the most expensive - I find it absolutely baffling that they'd consider bringing in an extra pacer who always goes for runs in SF games. I was going to say by dropping Ali you lose a spin option but then again - and I didn't notice this at the time , probably due to the amount of baffling play from our side - they didnt even use him as a bowler. For me Bell comes in for Wright and if Stokes comes back in it's for Bresnan although maybe Jordan deserves a go

  • SamWintson92 on March 13, 2014, 10:00 GMT

    My teams for 3rd T20I:

    WI XI: 1 Gayle 2 D Smith 3 Samuels 4 Simmons 5 DW Bravo 6 Sammy (C) 7 Russell 8 Ramdin (WK) 9 Cotterel (Give him a go dropping out of form Rampaul) 10 Badree 11 Santokie

    ENG DUMPING KP XI: 1 Bell (Drop Lumb. Lumb's very ordinary in T20 with an overall average of around 24 plus 2 bad t20s this series) 2 Hales 3 Moeen (Persist with him as an allrounder. He will be useful with his doosra spin) 4 Morgan (C) 5 Buttler (WK) 6 Bopara 7 Wright 8 Bresnan 9 Tradewell 10 Parry 11 Jordan (I like Dernbach for his yorker & back of the hand slower ball. But can't tust him as he can easily loss the match in an over)

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 9:58 GMT

    @Patchmaster on (March 12, 2014, 23:26 GMT) Re Ballance - In the 4 ODIs he played in the same side as Bell , Bell outdid him on the average by over 8 and SR by over 12. Trouble with Kieswetter - and this from a Somerset fan - is that especially at world level - he is boundary or nothing most of the time and we get enough of that from guys like Hales,Lumb and Wright. At least Bell brings something different to the side. A year ago Bell would be one of the last players I'd have gone with but just like with the ODI line up of recent times I feel we had too many accumulators at top , I wonder if we maybe have too many of the same at top of the T20 line up

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 9:45 GMT

    @BRUTALANALYST - You start your post with the word seriously then go on to say that Sammy should never bowl. The guys ER is just over 4.5 in ODIs and just under 7 in T20 - and that after his last 2 overs went for a combined 29. His economy started the rot in the ODI game we lost. I'd go as far as to suggest that there aren't too many pace bowlers out there who have a better ER in the world - let alone in the WI. Add in the fact that he is extremely dangerous with the bat and a great leader and I think you have an indispensible player. Samuels -T20 ave is just over 30 /SR of just under 130. I'd say that 's pretty good going. Add in his contributions with the ball and again you have an excellent player. You look at someone like Gayle and he often starts slow and is possibly the worst runner between the wickets but you wouldnt question his place in the side. Obviously he is not as dynamic a player as yer man Carberry who averages just less than 22 @ SR 62.79 in ODIs but then who is?

  • jackiethepen on March 13, 2014, 8:52 GMT

    Horribly out of form in the last games he played, Patchmaster? Exhausted maybe after the Ashes but he still managed to be the second highest run scorer after Morgan and averaged 42 in the 5 ODIs. Bell was dropped for no reason by Flower after performing well in t20 against Australia in 2011. If he had remained in the t20 side he would have been an asset by now. Ask the ECB why England players can't play t20 for their Counties. They won't give them a window. It is a ridiculous situation for England batsmen especially ODI players who sometimes have to play in a shortened game through weather i.e. Champions Trophy Final. Bell put himself up for IPL this year because he wanted experience of the form. It's ludicrous that he is then criticised for not playing t20. If Kieswetter was a better bet than Bell then he would have been in the side already. Bell was brought out as cover for injured Hales/ Morgan. If he plays today it's because the top order has been so bad.

  • cricketdebator on March 13, 2014, 8:41 GMT

    I totally agree with the comments made by BRUTALANALYST. The points raise are those I have been thinking as well. Samuels seems to lack the skills needed in rotating the strike, an as such is upsetting the momentum gained from the top. A definite cause for concern, and one which needs to be address pronto.

  • BRUTALANALYST on March 13, 2014, 5:28 GMT

    Seriously Samuels 28 from 35 balls after Gayle and Smith's rocket start should be of immediate concern if W.I are serious about defending their title ! It was same story in the first game to he wasted about 7 overs before taking Dernbach for 20, luckily after being dropped off the first ball but he needs that intensity form ball1 you can't be wasting so much time. Ironically the guy that won the World Cup final will see W.I leaving first round if he is to stay at 3 and bat like this cos Sammy is not going to be able to hit 30 from 9 balls every game. Similarly Sammy should never bowl, his role as "The finisher" and leader are good enough he shouldn't feel he has to bowl himself. I think Gayle is going to have to stand up and give an over or 2 because Sammy is just ripe for the picking.

  • BRUTALANALYST on March 13, 2014, 5:16 GMT

    Samuels is actually the weak link the way he is playing right now opposition should look to keep him in, every time after Gayle and Smith's blazing start he has given the momentum right back to England. Even that 40 in first game which went towards his MOM was poor, W.I should have really got 190 min ideally well over 200 with the start they had and only reaching 170 with 3 down given the batting power and depth was weak, V's stronger opposition would likely not have been enough. Think half of that 40 came form 5 balls v Dernbach ! I have no idea why Simmons doesn't come at 3 he usually opens so it's more natural for him and he's better at finding the boundary. I'd also put Bravo at 4 ahead of Samuels as he's a better batsman and again can rotate strike far easier. Samuels is only good when he goes into hitting every ball mode and should be used like Sammy at the end of an innings so he doesn't have the opportunity to waste so many balls and give the momentum back to the opposition.

  • on March 13, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    England should take a chance to james anderson in bowling department

  • Pontiac on March 13, 2014, 3:07 GMT

    Sammy's /fielding/ inconsistent? He's actually very good when he isn't carrying an injury and merely better than average when he is.

  • Patchmaster on March 12, 2014, 23:26 GMT

    Could England have prepared any worse for the WT20 ? Surely even the minnow nations have been more organized than this ? Our latest solution is to pick Ian Bell ? Are you kidding me ? Horribly out of form in the last games he played, and widely considered NOT to be a T20 player. There has to be someone that's worth more of a punt on than this ? I'd so much rather see someone like Gary Ballance (who scored well last season for Yorkshire) get the nod - at least it would be investing in the future, rather than grasping at straws form the past. What about Keiswetter ? He was man of the match in the last WT20 - surely he's a better bet than Bell ?!

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  • Patchmaster on March 12, 2014, 23:26 GMT

    Could England have prepared any worse for the WT20 ? Surely even the minnow nations have been more organized than this ? Our latest solution is to pick Ian Bell ? Are you kidding me ? Horribly out of form in the last games he played, and widely considered NOT to be a T20 player. There has to be someone that's worth more of a punt on than this ? I'd so much rather see someone like Gary Ballance (who scored well last season for Yorkshire) get the nod - at least it would be investing in the future, rather than grasping at straws form the past. What about Keiswetter ? He was man of the match in the last WT20 - surely he's a better bet than Bell ?!

  • Pontiac on March 13, 2014, 3:07 GMT

    Sammy's /fielding/ inconsistent? He's actually very good when he isn't carrying an injury and merely better than average when he is.

  • on March 13, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    England should take a chance to james anderson in bowling department

  • BRUTALANALYST on March 13, 2014, 5:16 GMT

    Samuels is actually the weak link the way he is playing right now opposition should look to keep him in, every time after Gayle and Smith's blazing start he has given the momentum right back to England. Even that 40 in first game which went towards his MOM was poor, W.I should have really got 190 min ideally well over 200 with the start they had and only reaching 170 with 3 down given the batting power and depth was weak, V's stronger opposition would likely not have been enough. Think half of that 40 came form 5 balls v Dernbach ! I have no idea why Simmons doesn't come at 3 he usually opens so it's more natural for him and he's better at finding the boundary. I'd also put Bravo at 4 ahead of Samuels as he's a better batsman and again can rotate strike far easier. Samuels is only good when he goes into hitting every ball mode and should be used like Sammy at the end of an innings so he doesn't have the opportunity to waste so many balls and give the momentum back to the opposition.

  • BRUTALANALYST on March 13, 2014, 5:28 GMT

    Seriously Samuels 28 from 35 balls after Gayle and Smith's rocket start should be of immediate concern if W.I are serious about defending their title ! It was same story in the first game to he wasted about 7 overs before taking Dernbach for 20, luckily after being dropped off the first ball but he needs that intensity form ball1 you can't be wasting so much time. Ironically the guy that won the World Cup final will see W.I leaving first round if he is to stay at 3 and bat like this cos Sammy is not going to be able to hit 30 from 9 balls every game. Similarly Sammy should never bowl, his role as "The finisher" and leader are good enough he shouldn't feel he has to bowl himself. I think Gayle is going to have to stand up and give an over or 2 because Sammy is just ripe for the picking.

  • cricketdebator on March 13, 2014, 8:41 GMT

    I totally agree with the comments made by BRUTALANALYST. The points raise are those I have been thinking as well. Samuels seems to lack the skills needed in rotating the strike, an as such is upsetting the momentum gained from the top. A definite cause for concern, and one which needs to be address pronto.

  • jackiethepen on March 13, 2014, 8:52 GMT

    Horribly out of form in the last games he played, Patchmaster? Exhausted maybe after the Ashes but he still managed to be the second highest run scorer after Morgan and averaged 42 in the 5 ODIs. Bell was dropped for no reason by Flower after performing well in t20 against Australia in 2011. If he had remained in the t20 side he would have been an asset by now. Ask the ECB why England players can't play t20 for their Counties. They won't give them a window. It is a ridiculous situation for England batsmen especially ODI players who sometimes have to play in a shortened game through weather i.e. Champions Trophy Final. Bell put himself up for IPL this year because he wanted experience of the form. It's ludicrous that he is then criticised for not playing t20. If Kieswetter was a better bet than Bell then he would have been in the side already. Bell was brought out as cover for injured Hales/ Morgan. If he plays today it's because the top order has been so bad.

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 9:45 GMT

    @BRUTALANALYST - You start your post with the word seriously then go on to say that Sammy should never bowl. The guys ER is just over 4.5 in ODIs and just under 7 in T20 - and that after his last 2 overs went for a combined 29. His economy started the rot in the ODI game we lost. I'd go as far as to suggest that there aren't too many pace bowlers out there who have a better ER in the world - let alone in the WI. Add in the fact that he is extremely dangerous with the bat and a great leader and I think you have an indispensible player. Samuels -T20 ave is just over 30 /SR of just under 130. I'd say that 's pretty good going. Add in his contributions with the ball and again you have an excellent player. You look at someone like Gayle and he often starts slow and is possibly the worst runner between the wickets but you wouldnt question his place in the side. Obviously he is not as dynamic a player as yer man Carberry who averages just less than 22 @ SR 62.79 in ODIs but then who is?

  • JG2704 on March 13, 2014, 9:58 GMT

    @Patchmaster on (March 12, 2014, 23:26 GMT) Re Ballance - In the 4 ODIs he played in the same side as Bell , Bell outdid him on the average by over 8 and SR by over 12. Trouble with Kieswetter - and this from a Somerset fan - is that especially at world level - he is boundary or nothing most of the time and we get enough of that from guys like Hales,Lumb and Wright. At least Bell brings something different to the side. A year ago Bell would be one of the last players I'd have gone with but just like with the ODI line up of recent times I feel we had too many accumulators at top , I wonder if we maybe have too many of the same at top of the T20 line up

  • SamWintson92 on March 13, 2014, 10:00 GMT

    My teams for 3rd T20I:

    WI XI: 1 Gayle 2 D Smith 3 Samuels 4 Simmons 5 DW Bravo 6 Sammy (C) 7 Russell 8 Ramdin (WK) 9 Cotterel (Give him a go dropping out of form Rampaul) 10 Badree 11 Santokie

    ENG DUMPING KP XI: 1 Bell (Drop Lumb. Lumb's very ordinary in T20 with an overall average of around 24 plus 2 bad t20s this series) 2 Hales 3 Moeen (Persist with him as an allrounder. He will be useful with his doosra spin) 4 Morgan (C) 5 Buttler (WK) 6 Bopara 7 Wright 8 Bresnan 9 Tradewell 10 Parry 11 Jordan (I like Dernbach for his yorker & back of the hand slower ball. But can't tust him as he can easily loss the match in an over)