Five learning points from Champions Trophy

October 6, 2009

Well, cricket’s Champions Trophy is over and we’ve learned some new things while some age-old truths remain, namely number 1 in my list.

The enigma of the Champions Trophy

September 28, 2009

Before I was based here in Italy, I reported on quite a lot of cricket including the 2004 Champions Trophy and the 2007 World Cup.

More Freelance Flintoffs might serve England well

September 17, 2009

flintoffAndrew Flintoff’s decision to forego a contract with England and set himself up as an elite cricket freelancer has provoked a fair amount of grumbling in the media, with words like “mercenary” and “snub” being bandied about all over the place.

A captaincy masterclass from Strauss

August 22, 2009

strauss1

It can be a dog’s life being a cricket captain: adored and cherished, chastised and deplored in equal measure. If Ponting was the crown prince of captains after the first test in Cardiff, he became the pauper at Lord’s and is now very much in the shadow of Strauss at the Oval.

Ill discipline costs England again

August 21, 2009

flintoffHeard the one about the English batsmen who just couldn’t resist nibbling at balls way outside off stump? It is an all too common occurrence and is the main reason why England fell short of a good first innings total in the deciding Ashes test.

Will England prove too fragile for final Ashes battle?

August 20, 2009

fredIn the end the England selectors kept their calm, remaining cut off from the hyperbole that followed Australia’s demolition of the home side at Headingley, and made just the one change for the Oval, with Jonathan Trott chosen to replace Ravi Bopara in England’s fragile middle order.

England start badly, career downhill

August 7, 2009

straussAndrew Strauss had a bad start to his day when he and his team mates were evacuated from their hotel at 5 o’clock in the morning because of a fire alarm. Unfortunately, that was just the start of a black Friday for the England captain.After days of assessing the fitness of Andrew Flintoff, Strauss and coach Andy Flower finally decided that the inspirational all-rounder could not be risked in a five-day match and it was announced that he was ruled out of the fourth Ashes test.

Battle-weary Australia need Lee fit and in form

August 4, 2009

brettleeAustralia have far more limited options than England when they consider changes to their
battle-weary side for the fourth Ashes test
 starting on Friday at Headingley, with their main hope of fresh impetus resting on the fitness of Brett Lee.

Can England take a 2-0 Ashes lead?

August 3, 2009

CRICKET-ASHES/A stunning day’s Test cricket, wasn’t it? If there was ever any doubt over the status of the longest form of the game then Sunday’s play will have washed away concerns.

Ashes analysis: insipid England fail to keep pressure on Australia

July 31, 2009

CRICKET-ASHES/Whatever momentum England had built up over Australia by scraping a draw in Cardiff and then winning convincingly at Lord’s, slowly ebbed away following an insipid display late on a truncated first day’s play of the third Ashes Test in Edgbaston, as Australia rattled along at almost four and a half runs an over to close the day at 126-1.