Just a few quick thoughts about yesterday’s ODI. I won’t go into too much detail because I imagine most of the games will follow a similar pattern. I’ll be repeating myself before I know it.
Essential the game went exactly as many of us had anticipated. Just call me Mystic Morgan. I didn’t quite expect England to sink to 14-3 – that’s bad even for us – but I wasn’t at all surprised that we struggled.
England have a very inexperienced team in these conditions. The UAE and the subcontinent are different worlds for many of our younger players. Teething problems are inevitable.
Our batsmen don’t get to practice on these types of wickets, against good spin bowling, back in England. It’s going to take time to adapt – and even then, plenty of players simply won’t be able to make the transition. That’s just the way it goes.
England have struggled to rotate the strike, and attack quality slow bowlers, in this part of the world for as long as I can remember. I don’t see why this team should be any different – at least initially. Bayliss will help them to adapt but it will be a slow process.
On a positive note, Eoin Morgan and James Taylor played really well. If only the same could be said about our openers. Roy got a good ball, but played slightly across it. Meanwhile Hales looked like a rabbit in the headlights. The shot he was out to – a tentative push at a ball he didn’t need to play at – demonstrates precisely why he should never open in test cricket. It was as ugly as it gets I’m afraid.
As for the bowling, maybe I’ll leave this until another day. Let’s just say it was about as penetrative as dildo made of jelly. This is going to be a recurring theme (the bowling, not dildos). At least Topley showed some promise by picking up three wickets though.