It’s amazing how quickly team’s performances can turn. Less than two months ago India were supposedly useless, couldn’t field, weren’t motivated, Duncan Fletcher was useless, etc, etc.
Now it’s England that all of a sudden fit that description. I’m not for a minute suggesting that England have become a bad side now in 6 weeks just because they have lost 3 ODI’s in a row. What I am saying though, is that England have been a bit of a shambles and just not good enough on this tour.
I don’t want to single anybody out here, but I think Craig Kieswetter could be the big loser in this series. His technical difficulties with the bat are nothing new, while his performance behind the stumps today won’t have helped his cause either.
In contrast Ian Bell is the big winner, without hitting a ball, Bell’s stock seems to have risen with calls increasing for his return to the 50 over team. I’ve heard various cricketing commentators and pundits saying that he is too good to not be able to get into this team.
At the start of this tour I did call for him to be left out of the middle order for Jonny Bairstow. Why? Because I don’t see Bell as a middle order player. I like a big hitter in the middle order.
At the top of the order is where I would gladly see Bell. No.3 looks the ideal position, but while Trott is scoring runs that seems a no goer.
Kieswetter is wicket keeper and Cook is captain, so that doesn’t leave much room for Bell to come in. But with Jonny Bairstow now in the side England have options behind the stumps, it could be a viable option to let Bell open with Cook and drop Kieswetter and let Bairstow keep wicket.
Despite scoring 98, I still heard plenty of criticism for Trott again today. I understand that his strike rate isn’t the most prolific, but where would the team be without his runs? When we are good enough to do without someone who scores plenty of runs too slowly, then drop him, but at the moment we aren’t.
Onto India and what a leader and finisher MS Dhoni is. I was listening to TMS today and I always knew that if MS was still there at the end then India would win, and so it proved. He truly is a master of the art of this form of cricket.
I also hear people say and read people writing that India are the world champions at this format of cricket, so it is no surprise that they are thrashing England – and yes that is true.
But look at this side and compare it to the one that won the world cup. The difference is astonishing, India must have a hell of a lot of decent ODI players coming through.
I highlighted one of their promising youngsters, Virat Kohli, on my facebook page only last Tuesday.
Only India stepping off the gas can prevent England getting a good series hammering now. Alastair Cook’s team are just not good enough in these conditions, simple as that.