It is only a week ago that Bell steered England home after three quick wickets, including Cook's and Pietersen's, had fallen. Not the most impressive knock by any standards, but still.
Bell averaged 30 against the Saffers in the summer. Not good! But not extremely bad either. Averaging 30 in a series now and then is simply what happens to any good batsman. And that's what Bell is: a good batsman. Not a great one. the great batsmen average over 50 and have fewer blips.
And do England have an alternative? England can do with Bell at 5 for a long long time! Since no single batsman, apart from Baby Joe today, hasn't been able to secure the #6 spot since Freddie figured out he was more a boxer than a cricketer, there is nobody competing for his place!
Last edited by Pup Clarke; 13-12-2012 at 02:21 PM.
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Waiting for th inevitable article after this series from Cricinfo about how Bopara is sitll a really good option.
#J.Hobbs; #L.Hutton; #D.Bradman; #V.Richards; #G.Sobers; #A.Border; #A.Gilchrist; #K.Miller; #I.Khan; #S.Warne; #M.Marshall;
How long will India persist with Ashwin and Ojha as test spinners ? Thought Chawla and Jadeja did good jobs.
Some attritional stuff today and fair play to the poms for gutsing it out. Saw a bit of it, reminded me a little of that Delhi pitch that just didn't bounce that much but not as bad. Then reverse swing and a bit of turn, it didn't look easy.
Ian Bell was the major disappointment for me today, was really hoping he could come up trumps in this Test and dispel any fears of his place becoming under increasing threat. As I've said on previous occasions I'm a big fan of Bell, he is one of the most attractive batsmen to watch in world cricket, but I realise that doesn't guarantee Test runs.
I don't necessarily go along with the thoery that he cannot score runs when the team needs them most, and he can succeed in trying conditions, but not with the kind of consistency that means his place in the side never comes under serious scrutiny.
I did think after a few breakthroughs in the last couple of years that he really could kick on and become one of the world's very top batsmen, but he has failed to live up to those expectations so far and his struggles in Asia cannot be understated and are no coincidence. For someone with his talent, I would have expected him to learn lessons from the past and certainly improved his play in that part of the world if not necessarily conquer it.
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But England would introduce 3 newish batsman together instead of relying on Bell's experience to pull through. But then there is the other thought that he just isn't scoring runs so what does it hurt to put fresh blood into the team.
It seems the option of Prior at 6 has also fallen by the way side with Broad and Swann's batting regressing recently.
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