View Poll Results: Steve Harmison for the first Test?

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  • Yes, in for Onions

    10 19.23%
  • Yes, in for Broad

    12 23.08%
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    24 46.15%
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    6 11.54%
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Thread: Steve Harmison

  1. #46
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Uppercut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    The Filth have comfortably the better bowling. But the Gash have the batting. Might be quite good to watch.

  2. #47
    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    Harder to argue with that than Don Quixickinson's claim that GBH was never Test class

  3. #48
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    Come on Richard, you have to admit that he was Test class in 2004.
    For the first 7 Tests and 3 months of it, yes - I'm never quite sure whether such a short time counts as "Test-class" TBH. Usually goes down more as "flash in the pan" in my book.

    Let's remind ourselves - in the last 6 Tests of 2004 Harmison did nothing of note except knock-over West Indies' house-of-cards at The Oval. In the other 5 Tests he averaged 48.29. In the first 3 Tests of 2005, meanwhile, he would have taken 0 wickets (for plenty) in each had South Africa declared a few overs earlier.

    That suggests that his improved accuracy of early-2004 was indeed a flash in the pan.
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  4. #49
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredfertang View Post
    With Flintoff, Anderson, Broad and Swann I think we can afford to take a flyer on a bloke who has won matches in the past and looks like he might just be in the mood/form to do it again
    "Let's give ourselves a very strong chance of playing with 10 men on the tiny outside chance that we might have 11-and-a-half".

    Is essentially how I think that thinking translates TBH.


  5. #50
    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    "Let's give ourselves a very strong chance of playing with 10 men on the tiny outside chance that we might have 11-and-a-half".

    Is essentially how I think that thinking translates TBH.
    Yes something along those lines but not quite that extreme - at the end of the day he does have 200+ test wickets

  6. #51
    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    For the first 7 Tests and 3 months of it, yes - I'm never quite sure whether such a short time counts as "Test-class" TBH. Usually goes down more as "flash in the pan" in my book.

    Let's remind ourselves - in the last 6 Tests of 2004 Harmison did nothing of note except knock-over West Indies' house-of-cards at The Oval. In the other 5 Tests he averaged 48.29. In the first 3 Tests of 2005, meanwhile, he would have taken 0 wickets (for plenty) in each had South Africa declared a few overs earlier.

    That suggests that his improved accuracy of early-2004 was indeed a flash in the pan.
    We don't see eye to eye on this (although there's as usual a good deal of truth in what you say). I'm not getting sucked into this again! I was just picking up on your slight exaggeration that Harmison was "never, ever Test quality" when even on your own analysis he was in early 04.

  7. #52
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredfertang View Post
    Yes something along those lines but not quite that extreme - at the end of the day he does have 200+ test wickets
    Quite a few of which have come against Bangladesh; 40-odd more of which came in those 7 Tests in early-2004.

    In 48 others he has 145 wickets (and by my reckoning about 40 of these were gimmes - either tailenders or wickets just before a declaration). How does this possibly impress anyone?
    Last edited by Richard; 03-07-2009 at 03:20 PM.

  8. #53
    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    Picking up on the point which Richard and Fred are chewing over, one thing about Harmison is that even when he's bowling close to his worst he doesn't get slapped around and usually escapes with un-embarrassing figures. Usually because the batsmen can't reach the ball, obviously, but nonetheless while he can be something of a waste of space when he's bowling badly, he's not a liability in a Devon Malcolm sort of way.

  9. #54
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    We don't see eye to eye on this (although there's as usual a good deal of truth in what you say). I'm not getting sucked into this again! I was just picking up on your slight exaggeration that Harmison was "never, ever Test quality" when even on your own analysis he was in early 04.
    Let's look at this another way: was Bob Massie Test-class in 1972? Or was he merely enjoying a flash-in-the-pan?

    It isn't unfair to suggest someone can be Test-class over a period, however short. But I tend to view it as requiring a year or so of "being" to actually represent a "shift". Which, as I say, Harmison did not have.

  10. #55
    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    The trouble is, well as I see it anyway, is that looking at the whole series objectively, on a man to man comparison we're not quite as good as the crims so if we play it with a straight bat (pun intended) then we'll get beaten - Harmison at the top of his game might change that

  11. #56
    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    Quite a few of which have come against Bangladesh; 40-odd more of which came in those 7 Tests in early-2004.

    In 48 others he has 145 wickets (and by my reckoning about 40 of these were gimmes - either tailenders or wickets just before a declaration). How does this possibly impress anyone?
    I said I didn't want to get sucked into this, but what the hell.

    As for the tailenders point, you can do this to any bowler's stats because all bowlers' stats are improved by tailend wickets. Harmison has shaken and dismissed his fair share of top-order batsmen.

    As for deleting his best figures from the equation, you're getting dangerously into the slightly Stalinist territory of historical purification.

    If you delete Murali's 500 best overs, and you remove his tailend wickets and his wickets against minnows, he'd probably have an average like Ian Salisbury's.

  12. #57
    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    Let's look at this another way: was Bob Massie Test-class in 1972?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    Or was he merely enjoying a flash-in-the-pan?
    No. But even if he was, it wouldn't necessarily mean that he wasn't Test class.

  13. #58
    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    I said I didn't want to get sucked into this, but what the hell.

    ....... Mr Z this sort of thing is happening more and more often - are you losing your steely courtroom countenance?

  14. #59
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fredfertang View Post
    The trouble is, well as I see it anyway, is that looking at the whole series objectively, on a man to man comparison we're not quite as good as the crims so if we play it with a straight bat (pun intended) then we'll get beaten - Harmison at the top of his game might change that
    Australian underperformance (the like of which we had with Gillespie and - post-injury - McGrath in 2005) is in my view rather more likely than Harmison over-performance.

    In such circumstances, England need to have their best team available to have a chance of capitalising.

  15. #60
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaremba View Post
    Yes.



    No. But even if he was, it wouldn't necessarily mean that he wasn't Test class.
    Fair enough then - you view being Test-class as a little different to how I do. Simple difference of opinion never hurt no-one.

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