The omission of Adil Rashid, a leg spinner, from the upcoming tour of Bangladesh may well have left a few people scratching their heads.
The England management have, in my opinion, handled him badly over the past few months, sending out mixed signals which can’t be helping the young mans confidence.
What has changed in the time since the original touring party to South Africa was named, to the retaining of James Tredwell in the ODI squad after he was called up as cover for Graeme Swann?
After naming the Bangladesh touring squads, without him in it, Andy Flower said “I think it will do him a lot of good to go back and play a lot of cricket for Yorkshire and to work out his own game, to work out what works for him, to understand his game better, and to come back into the England side, whenever that might be, a more knowledgeable and tougher cricketer.”
That would suggest that Flower thinks he is not ready for international cricket just yet and doesn’t even really know his own game yet.
Did they not notice this on the tour of the West Indies last year? If not then maybe during the Natwest series or Champions Trophy?
He was messed around during the English summer, performing well in the first Natwest series game against Australia, only to be dropped for the next match.
He was then given just one over in the Twenty20 captained by Alastair Cook in South Africa, went for 25 runs and was then basically dumped from the tour with hardly any chance of redeeming himself.
In my opinion he has been badly treated by the England management.
It dosen’t take a rocket scientist to work out that he is only a young kid still learning his cricket, as Flower has now suggested. So why then was he dragged out of the Yorkshire side during the summer to sit on the sidelines? When they are now saying he needs to play more cricket.
Why was he named in the England squads to tour South Africa if he basically wasn’t ready? He ended up in the development squad, where he should have been in the first place, but only after a humiliating demotion.
Another option could have been to play abroad during the English winter, like Monty Panesar has.
I don’t doubt for a minute that Andy Flower and Andrew Strauss want Rashid to succeed, it would be great for England to have a leg spinner who can bat. I also don’t doubt that they are doing what they now think is best for him by sending him on the Lions Tour and suggesting he then plays a full season for Yorkshire.
What I do doubt is the way they have handled him over the last 12 months, by all means take him on a tour to have a look at him, as they did in West Indies. But why have they only just seen now what they should have seen during the West Indies tour?
Let him learn his cricket and go back to the familiar surroundings of Yorkshire, England have a promising cricketer here so lets not ruin him before he has even started.