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Thread: Do you know that!

  1. #46
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    It did? How do we know that, then? Were England a team consistently "punching above weight" in the mid-1980s?
    Yes, Botham could still put-in extraordinary performances but is it REALLY worth picking a player for 40 games if he might turn 2 of them on their heads? I say no, myself.
    I have not disputed that Botham was still incredibly talented with the bat between 1983\84 and 1987 - because I've said countless times that ability does not simply disappear. But for whatever reasons, by-and-large he wasn't performing.
    As for the need of the team is greater than the need to maintain averages... fact is, if you're doing poorly (and averaging poorly as a result) the team suffers. A player with a batting-average of 29 and a bowling-average of 37 IS NOT a very good player, however well he's done previously. And as such he's not going to contribute positively to very many matches. As such, it might be an idea to replace him with someone who is, rather than keeping him going because of something he did 5 years ago. No, there wasn't another all-rounder around - there very, very rarely is. Test-class all-rounders are exceedingly rare. But as we've found-out on countless occasions, picking mediocre all-rounders (which fact is Botham WAS from 1983\84 onwards) is in fact worse than picking a specialist.
    England just didnt have depth to be playing without Botham on a regular basis..thats why he was there..and he was without a doubt in the top 11 players in the country eligible to play for England

    As I said earlier, I guess you just had to be there....if you were watching the game at that time, you would be able to put his play into a better context.
    For example...vs WI in 84, Botham didnt hit a hundred, but generally it was only he and Lamb could fairly cocnsistantly face the WI's quicks with any confidence.

    In 85 vs Australia his batting was very handy indeed when it was needed, vs Pakistan in 87, even though the scores were particularly high, his worth to the team was huge.

    Yeah he failed vs WI's in 85, but he battled as well as anyone in that team, when survival was the key as it waas nigh on impossible to score vs that WI's bowling attack on those pitches.
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  2. #47
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    You think I haven't at least watched highlights of some of those series? No, not the same as watching it ball-by-ball, but enough to get a reasonable feel. And whether or not he *looked like* scoring runs in certain circumstances, the fact is HE DIDN'T. No, of course it wasn't easy against West Indies in the 70s and 80s, and 1984 especially, but that was by no means his only failings.
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  3. #48
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    You think I haven't at least watched highlights of some of those series? No, not the same as watching it ball-by-ball, but enough to get a reasonable feel. And whether or not he *looked like* scoring runs in certain circumstances, the fact is HE DIDN'T. No, of course it wasn't easy against West Indies in the 70s and 80s, and 1984 especially, but that was by no means his only failings.
    I dont think many people would consider that Botham actually failed in 84, he contributed more than most could and more than most did.

    Again, what i am saying is that you can watch all the highlight footage you want, but you wont get the context and by that I dont just mean how an innings fits into a match, or how a match fits into a series, I mean how a period of play is appreciated by the people who watch it at the time ...an example of this is something I have mentioned before..Robin Smiths first England match..he scored 30 odd, nothing special...you may have read about it, but you still wont get a feel of how to those who watched it felt that at last England have found a batsman who could take the attack to the WI's..you had to be there!!!!

    Its ok to say with hindsight that Botham should have gone after 1983...you can say that about anyone though,Greg Chappell had a terrible patch in the early 80's then bounced back with a double hundred. At the time, the feeling was Botham could come back next match and take 7 wickets and score a 100...unfortunately it rarely happened after 83, but the talent hadnt disappeared and test selectors werent fortune tellers

  4. #49
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    So they couldn't tell that he was overweight and had attitude problems?


  5. #50
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    So they couldn't tell that he was overweight and had attitude problems?
    Did he have attitude problems later in his career any worse than at the start??? So he smoked a bit of weed, he liked a drink, he played football 24 hours before he was to go on tour, he got into a fight with Ian Chappell and beat the living **** out of some sailor..no-one could doubt his commitment on the filed though

    I dont think weight really had that much to do with it when it came to his batting....he was overweight in 85 when he averaged over 100 in first class cricket and hit 80 sixes in the season....and there were times when he actually lost a bit of weight, but he didnt get the test hundreds...there were times when he struggled when he was in peak condition as well.

    His back injury may have had more to do with it, which apparently he suffered from a lot earlier in his career than many people think

  6. #51
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    that said Richard, I do whole heartedly agree with you that Bothams bowling performances slipping werent to do with him being 'found out'..he just wasnt the bowler he once had been.

    Botham at his peak was occassionally unplayable, in a way Dev could only have dreamt of being

  7. #52
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Now I'm no biomechanist, but weight problems have a massive impact on the back if you're bowling, no?
    Maybe he'd always had a slight problem, yes, I've heard that too, but there's absolutely no doubt from any source I've heard that if he'd been more fit it'd not have caused him the problems it did with his bowling.
    As for the attitude didn't make a difference... an aptitude for a drink and a gamble can be worked around... as Sobers demonstrates... but only if you've got certain other things that aren't going wrong at the same time. Far more often than not, this sort of way-of-life will sort you out in sport. Yes, there are differences with football but equally there is some significance to the number of footballers who had careers interrupted or ruined by similar traits in the early '90s.

  8. #53
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swervy
    Botham at his peak was occassionally unplayable, in a way Dev could only have dreamt of being
    Only occasionally?
    Genuine question?
    From the footage I've seen and the fact he had an average below 21 in all conditions for his first 42 Tests has always suggested to me that it was a bit more than occasional!

  9. #54
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    Now I'm no biomechanist, but weight problems have a massive impact on the back if you're bowling, no?
    Maybe he'd always had a slight problem, yes, I've heard that too, but there's absolutely no doubt from any source I've heard that if he'd been more fit it'd not have caused him the problems it did with his bowling.
    As for the attitude didn't make a difference... an aptitude for a drink and a gamble can be worked around... as Sobers demonstrates... but only if you've got certain other things that aren't going wrong at the same time. Far more often than not, this sort of way-of-life will sort you out in sport. Yes, there are differences with football but equally there is some significance to the number of footballers who had careers interrupted or ruined by similar traits in the early '90s.
    you make out like Botham was an alcky or something!!!!

  10. #55
    Hall of Fame Member steds's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swervy
    you make out like Botham was an alcky or something!!!!

  11. #56
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swervy
    you make out like Botham was an alcky or something!!!!
    Well... you don't have to be an alchy to have a drink problem... all a drink problem to me suggests (and I'm rapidly becoming something close to an expert on the situation as I sink deeper and deeper into the licensing trade) is something that interferes with your fairly regular wellbeing...
    And I'd say that it definately did cause Botham to be a lesser cricketer than maybe he might have been.

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by C_C
    Imran was a far better batsman than Botham or Kapil or Hadlee ever could DREAM of being.
    This is just so off the mark it isn't funny. The suggestion that someone who was a servicable lower order bat and adept at shepharding the tail is superior to someone who was, at his peak, one of the greatest and most devastating batsmen in the world simply because he had a higher average is just laughable, and it's exactly this sort of statistics obsession that is utterly beyond me. I could name 10 Botham innings that are better than anything Imran ever came close to. He did a good job adding some runs on with the tail, especially later in his career, and a couple of times he cracked an easy hundred on a road to boost his team closer to a mammoth total. Botham played some of the greatest innings ever seen. There is no comparison.
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  13. #58
    Hall of Fame Member FaaipDeOiad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SJS
    Of the four allrounders talked off. Botham was the most gifted and, at his best, without doubt the best of the lot.

    As a batsman. He was the best of the lot. Period. If you have seen them bat, you wouldnt talk stats. There was no comparison between him and the others in batting.

    As a fielder. He was one of the greatest all round fielders of al time. Again the other three were simply not in the same league.

    As a bowler. It is as a bowler alone that he could be considered close to the bottom of that impressive heap. Imran and Hadlee were superior bowlers overall (even if Botham had ended his career half way through) but he (Botham) and kapil were not the same bowlers towards the later part of their careers as in the earlier. For Botham this latter part was nearly half his career. One can give various reasons for his bowling declining but the facts remain more or less as stated.

    As an all rounder, its difficult to pick throughout their careers since Hadlee was a mediocre batsman for a long spell and Botham as stated was a mediocre bowler for a long spell. Imran flowered as a batsman much later in his career.

    But if you take them at their peaks and only at their peak period, Botham was the greatest all rounder of the lot.

    The only one who came close to being another Gary Sobers from this lot was Botham in the early part of his career.

    He was a match winner with both bat and ball.

    Imran and Hadlee were match winners with the ball and sometimes won/mostly saved batting situations. Kapil was a pure all rounder and could be a match winner with both bat and ball but was less of a batsman than Botham and far lesser as a bowler than the other two.

    Having watched all four throughout their careers was a great privilege.
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  14. #59
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FaaipDeOiad
    This is just so off the mark it isn't funny. The suggestion that someone who was a servicable lower order bat and adept at shepharding the tail is superior to someone who was, at his peak, one of the greatest and most devastating batsmen in the world simply because he had a higher average is just laughable, and it's exactly this sort of statistics obsession that is utterly beyond me. I could name 10 Botham innings that are better than anything Imran ever came close to. He did a good job adding some runs on with the tail, especially later in his career, and a couple of times he cracked an easy hundred on a road to boost his team closer to a mammoth total. Botham played some of the greatest innings ever seen. There is no comparison.
    While I personally would certainly take '77-'83-Botham over '81\82-'91\92 Imran, I think that's still a little of a disservice to Imran. We are talking about someone who averaged 52.77 in 68 Test-match innings. Now however much you can't take stats as gospel, that is still some achievement and certainly that of one who is a little more than a servicable lower-order batsman.

  15. #60
    International Captain Swervy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    Well... you don't have to be an alchy to have a drink problem... all a drink problem to me suggests (and I'm rapidly becoming something close to an expert on the situation as I sink deeper and deeper into the licensing trade) is something that interferes with your fairly regular wellbeing...
    And I'd say that it definately did cause Botham to be a lesser cricketer than maybe he might have been.
    You say that as if it is absolute fact that Botham had a drink problem!!!!...but then again who am I to argue with someone who works behind the counter in an offy....jeez, my uncle died an alcoholic and my brother in law is about to go into re-hab for it, but I certainly wouldnt call myself an expert in the field..I bow down to your superior knowledge

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