England’s squad announced for the upcoming Pakistan series produced very few surprises, but will the balance of the starting XI remain as predictable?
Paul Wood - ARTICLES
The tightening of the ‘Kolpak’ regulations in recent times (the ruling that allows overseas players to play cricket in England without being classed as such) is one reason why many counties may have offered enhanced opportunities to promising youngsters, cricketers that would generally have been expecting a season largely consisting of second XI fixtures.
There are gradually more and more sportsmen (and women) of all levels trying out compression outfits underneath their regular sporting fatigues. With each manufacturer doing their utmost to corner a particular niche in the market, well-known sportswear brand, Canterbury of New Zealand have recently released their new model called the Mercury Compression.
At Lords in the second innings England were wobbling with India doing their utmost to wrestle the momentum from the hosts, and at 107-6 (a lead for England of 295 at this point) the game may not quite have been considered ‘in the balance’ but India were giving themselves a hint of an opportunity. Yet they couldn’t break the Matt Prior and Stuart Broad partnership and the game was soon beyond them.
Champions Nottinghamshire were again the early pace setters in Division One and were the only side with a 100% winning record after their first three games. They looked highly unlikely to maintain an unbeaten record as early as their second game when they conceded a 193 run deficit at Headingley against the much fancied Yorkshire after both sides first innings.
When Kieron Pollard slapped the fourth six of his innings against Holland on Monday, he brought up only his second ODI fifty in 34 matches.
The West Indian is a prized asset when it comes to the Twenty20 competitions, but he has struggled to find the necessary balance between batting instinctively by looking to dominate the bowling, and knowing when to apply a modicum of patience and general cricketing nous.