Sunday, 2 September 2007

What now for Simon Jones?

There's an interesting piece on Simon Jones by his former country skipper Steve James in today's Torygraph. Jones, of course, has endured a depressingly truncated season, taking just five wickets in all competitions - and one for 293 in four championship matches.

Many quicks have had some of their best years after 28 (Jones' current age); yet, given the multitude of injuries the Welshman has suffered, it seems possible he will never be a threat again, even at county level. He has lost much of his pace, and, understandably, his runup suggests a man fearful of yet another injury.

With his central contract soon to end, it will be interesting to see where Jones sees his future. According to James, Hampshire is a possible destination. In truth, leaving Glamorgan may be a wise choice: they have been the scene for so many of his ill-fated comebacks that a change of scene could only help. And Shane Warne could have the effect of reinvigorating the man who, fleetingly, was able to deliver reverse-swing at 90mph, and excelled in the 2005 Ashes and the 2-1 victory in South Africa the previous winter.

Yet, either way, it seems highly unlikely Jones will play for his country again. He will need a full season of county action before he can even be considered a candidate; and, equally, England's fast-bowling ranks are bursting as it is. What it will require is tremendous strength of character - and a good deal of luck. Simon Jones returned, spectacularly, from one career-threathening injuy; doing it twice appears, alas, to be proving beyond him.


Richard Lake said...

Character Jones seems to have plenty of, I'm not sure about the luck though.

Even if England's fast bowling cupboard is bursting at the seems, a fit, firing Simon Jones moves to the top of the list. His ability to move an old ball is sorely missed by England and is a great balance to Matthew Hoggard, who is arguably the best new ball bowler in world cricket.

If he is looking to move county, he could still learn a lot from Darren Gough !

River Taff End said...

Believe me guys, I've seen Simon Jones more than most this season and he isn't getting any better.

His run up is more stuttering, and his fielding more reticent than it's ever been.

Patience amongst Glamorgan fans has run out, and many will not be sorry to see him move on.

To be blunt, he's not fit for county cricket at the moment.

I wish him well and, of course, if he recovers the 05 form then that's brilliant but the truth is that he bought a swanky house (£400 - £500k) in St Nicholas in the affluent Vale of Glamorgan and therefore will go where the money is.

If Hants have more money than sense, then I don't blame the guy for going for it.

welshred said...

What has where he lives got to do with it? Its upto him what he spends his money on. Yes, Simon Jones hasn't played well this season but I think he is important to glamorgan and with maynards influence will recapture his form. He's said he wants to go somewhere in the winter to play some cricket, if he does that and comes through unscathed and taking wickets, then his confidence will grow. Trying to get back to fitness in a team which is playing absolutely rubbish is always going to be difficult, especially with the pressure that he should just come back in and bowl 90mph taking lots of wickets. Also, there is no reason to think that someone better than jones will want to come to Glamorgan. Michael Owen had a similar operation around the same time and his comeback and rehabilitation has been similar. I think he could stay as he's said no to Hampshire before and seems very settled in Cardiff. I hope he gets back to close to his best, stays with Glam and plays for england again.

Tim said...

Personally, I think Jones leaving may be best all round, as it could just reinvigorate his career with Mr Warne around.

River Taff End said...

I think where he lives is everything to do with it if he has a big mortgage to pay and a central contract of £150k about to disappear.

If Hants offer £100k, and Glam £20k plus £5k a game, what would you do?

He shouldn't be 'getting back to fitness' in a match environment. He should be fit before he presents himself for selection, and I don't think he'll ever be properly 'fit' again.

I wouldn't pay him £100 let alone £100k on this season's evidence.

Sad but true.