Friday, 1 December 2006

England miss a trick... or two!

The idea touted by England behind their selection for the second Test is that there will be variable bounce and reverse swing on this pitch later on.

Two key problems lie behind the selection of Anderson therefore. He bowled poorly and expensively at Brisbane and will not extract the bounce that Mahmood gets. Mahmood hits the deck hard and at pace and will get more variation in bounce therefore than Anderson. So too would Liam Plunkett.

Secondly, Mahmood is a proven reverse swinger of the ball, where as Anderson is more of a conventional swing bowler. The higher the pace, the more reverse swing you get and Mahmood bowls over 5mph faster than Anderson. He also bats of course, a key factor in Fletcher's selection policy it seams, well for Spinners at least!

So surely it should have been Mahmood who lined up for England yesterday night at the expense of Anderson, if of course England truly believe their own reasoning! If not then surely it should have been Monty who is capable of 5 wicket hauls on fifth day pitches against the best players of spin.

Monty and Mahmood could even have played in the same team to cover both the possibility of a corksrew wicket and an up and down track, at the expense of Giles and Anderson, without demonstrably weakening the batting.

Now though we have to wait and hope that the Australians get themselves out against the likes of Anderson and Giles, rather than vice versa. One can only hope that England haven't missed a trick, or two on what is currently a very flat and slow paced track.

Chris Pallett

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