Ian Bell is hopeful that a positive stretch in the Big Bash League with Perth Scorchers will reignite his England International aspirations. Bell will be expected to participate actively for the Scorchers, playing a key role in their top three.
The 34-year-old veteran who has a total of 118 Tests, 161 ODIs and 8 T20Is to his name, has not featured in a test match for England for over a year period.
However, with England’s 3-0 whitewash in the Indian Test series with a non-firing middle order, Bell is desperate to make a comeback into the national side.
He had been left disappointed after he was axed due to failing to score a century in 23 Test innings. He however believes he still has more to give, and having captained Warwickshire through the English county season. Bell is hoping that a standout campaign at the BBL will help remind the selectors of the plethora of talents he possesses. Continue reading →
The Rising Pune Super Giants probably had a little too much of orthodoxy in their top order in this year’s IPL which might have harmed them.
If you look at their opening pair and then, number three and number four in the first half of the tournament, they were all orthodox players.
In the shortest format, sometimes, when you are chasing down a big total or even playing at places where the par scores happen to be pretty high, say in excess of 180-200, you need to score at much higher than a run a ball from start to end.
However, when you go with technical batsmen, they don’t play the boundary shots as often as they should because they over-emphasize on the correctness of the batting.
They don’t even think about the cross batted hoicks and swipes which, from the test Cricket’s point of view, is a very good batting quality, but, in T20 or 50-over Cricket, not so much because in those formats it’s important for you to come up with those shots every once in a while.
With Pune, there was always a lull in their innings in between 6 to 15 overs with the fours and sixes hardly making any appearance and the 15-20 runs that they were scoring lesser in that period were making them lose games as it was only that much of margin that they were losing.
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Mohammad Amir sent shiver down the spines of the Indian fans with his bowling spell in Dhaka last night.
The left arm speedster sent the Indian top order back into the hut with not even 10 runs on the board for India.
The target was however too small for India and they ended up getting it, but, Amir, for a small period of time, had surely lit up the proceedings with his deadly combination of speed and swing.
Bowling in high one forties and swinging the ball back into the right handed batsmen, it was the Amir of old, that teenager who had taken the Cricketing World by storm in the 2009-10 Season.
Amir went for a couple of boundaries in his last over which might have spoilt his figures a little bit, but, for the most parts of his spell, he was unplayable.
Apart from Virat Kohli, there was no one else who could face him with confidence.
He bowled his quota in one go and it’s only when his spell finished, the Indian batsmen started breathing easy.
Amir seemed to be extra pumped up for the occasion. The way he was sprinting, it was evident that the young man was seeking to make a statement that he was back and he was back in full flow. Continue reading →
There are a lot of negotiations being made at the Essex County Cricket Club at the moment with Ronnie Irani, the ex-England all rounder, being give the charge of the Cricket committee, Christopher Silverhood replacing Paul Grayson in caretaker capacity as head coach and Ravi Bopara agreeing to prolong his association with the club finalizing a contract extension recently.
Essex’s last season was far from being a successful one for them. They were hoping to be able to make it to the top flight in the county championship, but, they failed to do so.
They would have made up for that a little bit if they had been able to produce better returns in white ball Cricket, but, they would be pretty disappointed with the fact that they crashed out in Round of 8 in both the 20-over and 50-over competitions as well.
So, it wasn’t tough to guess that there would be some reactions by the top brass at the club. The first person whose position came under the pump was Grayson and eventually, he had to vacate his post by mutual understanding with the board.
According to Bopara, Grayson’s departure is pretty emotional for him as well as some of his teammates as he was a guy who was close mates to almost everyone and his guidance was invaluable. But, it’s always important in life to move ahead. Continue reading →
Jason Roy scored a stroke filled half century at Old Trafford against Australia on Tuesday.
However, he would be disappointed that he could not make it big.
It was for the third time in a row in the series that Roy had got a fantastic start and was looking all set for the three figure score.
He was hitting the ball sweetly and no Aussie bowler was posing any sort of challenge to him.
But, in the 15th over of the game, when England’s score was 86, Roy came down the track to the debutant left arm spinner Ashton Agar and tried to play an inside out shot, but, he got too close to the ball and was unable to open his shoulders freely to get the elevation that was needed.
He ended up just chipping the ball towards the short extra cover at a catchable height, but, with the force of the bottom hand, he had managed to put some power into it.
However, fielding there at that position was Australia’s best fielder Glenn Maxwell who, after fumbling a little bit, completed the catch and Roy was off to the pavilion.
From the team’s point of view though, Roy had done his job already with that knock in which his strike rate was about 140. Continue reading →
The batting position of Gary Ballance is one of the big talks in the English media at present.
There are very few who are backing the Yorkshire left hander to keep batting no. 3 in the ongoing Ashes series.
But, Ravi Bopara reckons the kind of record Ballance has, people should not write him off.
In the words of Bopara, “Gary has shown he has the skills to grit his way through the new ball. If you see his record, he averages more than 50 and he has batted 3 for most parts of his career so far. Australia, of course, is one of the best bowling units and they pose a different challenge, but, still, I would say Gary has it in him to do well against them.”
Bopara himself has also had the opportunity to bat one down in an Ashes series.
When the Kangaroos had toured England in 2009, Bopara was slotted in the top order by the team management because of his brilliant form in domestic Cricket that season.
But, he turned out to be a failure and eventually found himself out of the team towards the end of the series.
His test career never recovered from there.
He played a few test matches after that batting in the lower middle order, but, didn’t manage to establish himself in the team. Continue reading →
There is a misconception in the minds of a few people that Ravi Bopara bats well at the end of the innings and that he is a good finisher.
The reality is entirely opposite to that. Bopara is someone who cannot go hard at the bowling straightaway.
He hits the cricket ball cleanly, that is true, but, only when he plays a few deliveries.
He does not tend to muscle the ball, Bopara. He is more of a timer and that’s why, he needs some time at the crease.
However, in most of the teams which he plays for, he has to come lower down the order.
Even in the Indian Premier League this year, there is the same scenario. Bopara is batting 6 and sometimes even 7.
In the Sunrisers XI, there is a very strong case for Bopara to be pushed up as most of the guys in there are highly inexperienced and some of them are not even capped internationals.
No. 3 is Bopara’s place to bat in T20 Cricket or maybe no. 4, but, not lower than that. He can open as well if the Sunrisers want. Continue reading →