CategoryPlayer Spotlight

Chris Woakes: You Don’t Know What You’ve Got Until It’s Gone

Today Michael Wood pays tribute to one of England’s finest, if least exciting, team men of recent times. As our white ball bowlers book their neck massage appointments after getting carted into the stands during the ODIs series, the absence of England’s “Mr Dependable” was painfully obvious to all. Oh how we missed the beautifully boring Chris Woakes to kill the Indians’ fun. I love Chris Woakes but let’s admit it. He’s about as exciting as renewing your car insurance...

The Underrated Utility Of Joe Root

England’s loss in the first ODI was the latest by-product of England’s approach to playing this format of the game. All-out attack needs to be persisted with, Morgan reasoned, even in the face of reason. This approach almost took them out of World Cup contention in the group stage. But they ended up winning the tournament playing with the same approach anyway. Morgan’s men must be on to something. But there is one qualm to be had with him, which he cannot truly do anything about at the moment...

An Ode To Eoin

Today we welcome Simon Begley back to TFT. As an Irishman living in England, he’s only got good things to say about our white ball captain. And who can blame him? Sometime around 2004, a young Surrey player told me about a wonderful left-handed batsman from our home country. Gary Wilson – who would himself later captain Ireland and Surrey – reckoned he was better than Ed Joyce. At the time, Ed was scoring county runs for fun and had qualified for England. According to Gary, this kid was...

Mark Wood: the fast bowler with wheels and a GPS

Us Indians are infatuated with pace. It’s just not about the cricket either. We’re always looking for ways to get done with things done without breaking a sweat—a task even tougher to accomplish when you factor in the humidity of the subcontinent. But it suits us better when the going gets slow. The country’s bureaucracy has a fascination for delaying proceedings. It’s not always about corruption or incompetence either. It’s a reflection of our ethos. If cricket’s a reflection of society, then...

Is Alex Hales Too Good To Ignore Forever?

He’s got England’s highest ever T20 international score, the second most runs, the third most caps, and the fourth highest average. So surely there’s a strong case for recalling Alex Hales before the T20 World Cup? After all, winning this tournament seems to be the ECB’s top priority in 2021. Jack Swaby looks at the arguments … It has been almost two years since Alex Hales was dropped from the England set-up after testing positive for recreational drugs. White ball...

Ishant Sharma: The Slow-Burning Superstar

Today we welcome new writer Matt Carter to TFT. He looks at the career of one of England’s chief tormentors this morning … There were minimal reasons to smile for India during their first test defeat at the hands of England a few weeks ago. However one rare moment of joy was provided by Ishant Sharma claiming his 300th Test wicket. Ishant’s journey to that tally has been a turbulent one. Debuting in 2007 there was ample talk of him being the superstar fast bowler India had long...

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