What the Taylor and the Buttler Saw


We don’t get to write the following words very often, so we’re going to savour every last one: England have won a cricket match at the WACA. That’s right folks, we played a match in Perth – so often the graveyard of English hopes – and emerged victorious. Of course, it helped that the opposition was India, rather than Australia, but I’ll take every victory going right now. Why look a gift horse in the mouth? India are still the reigning World Champions after all.

The stars of the show, from our perspective, were James Taylor and Jos Buttler. Both needed a score coming into this match, so their performances were most welcome.

Sometimes it’s hard to know what to make of Taylor. He’s such a scruffy batsman and he can look extremely frenetic on occasion. Having said that, he manipulates the ball into gaps well, generates considerable bat speed when having a thrash, and is a whippet between the wickets. I think every team should have someone like him … just to irritate the purists.

Jos Buttler also played extremely well. Few batsmen managed to master conditions at the WACA today, but Jos timed the ball sweetly. His was an incredibly disciplined and mature knock which should do his confidence the world of good. It was just a shame that he couldn’t quite get us over the line.

As for the bowlers, Mo, Finn and Jimmy bowled nice spells, while Woakes (any ideas for a nickname?) and Broady picked up a couple of wickets. Conditions were helpful for them, but they still did their jobs well.

I think many of us feared that England wouldn’t win a single match in this Tri-series, so to qualify for the final is a decent achievement. Although Australia will probably pulverise us in the finale, I think we’re slowly beginning to see some positive signs. There’s something intangible about this particular England side that I like. Does anyone feel the same?

James Morgan


  • I certainly do feel the same James.
    There is a lot to like about this England side, different players putting their hands up when needed is definitley a positive sign and one we must hope continues.
    Even at 80/5 I was still confident we’d do it, I thought with Buttler & Woakes to bat we’d have enough
    I do wonder what to do with Woakes though, I don’t feel he is a death bowler, but don’t automatically feel he should be dropped. Tredwell would possibly come in but that would mean Ravi would have to play (so we can get some overs if the spinners are getting tonked)

  • What are people’s thoughts on Stokes? Listening to the Aussie commentary, they cannot believe he is not in the side. I very much can believe it given his form in the last few months for England, but at the same time feel he was poorly used. Think he would have felt much more at home in Ravi’s position, and think he is wasted down the order.His innings in the match against Notts (in which Taylor also scored a ton) should have been enough to get him in at 6, and he offers significantly more with the ball than Ravi.

    • The problem in SL was that Stokes was put in the same bracket as Woakes and Jordan as bowling allrounders when he really needs to be in the top order – I’d have him in for Ravi at the moment.

    • Did you see him in SL? 1st-ball ducks and going at 10-11 an over. Totally out of form with both bat and ball. And you’d still have him for the WC?

    • Yes we should in my opinion. So often we would have been the ‘third man’ out of 3. So celebrate the victories I say!

  • he manipulates the ball into gaps well, generates considerable bat speed when having a thrash, and is a whippet between the wickets. I think every team should have someone like him … just to irritate the purists.

    Forget irritating the purists, those are pretty well essential qualities in any good one day batter, whether they have a classic style or not.
    (Note, for example, the Melbourne Stars’ semi final loss, where both Lumb and Pietersen were well set, with a relatively undemanding target in sight, when their partners got terribly bogged down, with predictable results.)

    • Not sure about ‘Scruffy’ but his technique’s stood up to the test of international cricket so far at least. I think the most irritating thing bowlers will find is that he’s incredibly hard to ‘bounce out’!

      JT judges the pace of an innings better than most I’ve seen, time and again for Notts he’s shown a calm head knocking the ball around in the middle overs before upping the tempo when set.

  • Anyone got a spare drop-in pitch?

    Playing one match on that track was bad enough but the Final as well? The balls that dismissed Dhoni and Bell kept fiendishly low then two from Patel leapt at Morgan’s throat – playing a Mitch or two on it could be fun.

    Although the info that they’re using the same pitch for the Final comes from the C9 commentators and if they said that grass is green I’d want a second opinion. Can’t they get Ponting, Gilchrist and Fleming in for Healy, Slater and Brayshaw, preferably by Sunday?

  • What pleased me about today was that at 66 for 5 we didn’t get bogged down as we have done in the past – England have been guilty of playing brainless cricket in ODIs, but Taylor and Buttler played really intelligently, not taking too many risks but keeping the run rate under 4.5 all the way. Previous England sides would have scratched around for 20 overs and then needed 6/7 an over off the last 10 which would have been a nightmare on that pitch.

    I thought some of the praise for Broad was a bit over the top – on a pitch that was difficult, 2 for 56 wasn’t a great return.

    Broad and Ravi are the two worries – don’t understand why Ravi isn’t getting a bowl because that wicket was tailor made for him and I always think he bats better when he has a bowling role. At the moment, I’d seriously consider Treadwell for Broad.

    • I think we have to play Broad. He is a concern and is not really pulling his weight but we need to find out if he is going to come right. Some players never really come back to where they were post surgery. We need to persevere, give him a chance and see how he gets on. Fully fit he is an extremely valuable team member.

  • As we kept India down to a below laptop score of 200 we always had a chance of recovering because the run rate was not too taxing. It would be nice to see a more ruthless performance from our top order batting but hey ho.

    India are a shocking team these days. Away from home they must be the worst of he so called big teams. The idea we are going to be playing them over and over again in the coming years is deeply depressing.

    Have concerns about Bopara. He has just not got going. I am yet to be convinced that Moores is contributing anything to this side as coach. According to some Aussie judges the fielding is average, and we seem to rarely bat as a team unit. Still, we know all these things and in fairness they haven’t had much time to gell together. Can’t see us beating Australia, but then on home turf they are my clear favourites for the World Cup, so it will be no disgrace. At least we are inching forward.

  • I’m happier about this group of players than I am about the management. One of the reasons we have so little strength in depth is that so many promising players have been mishandled in the last year and have gone backwards when they could have been expected to progress. One of the most encouraging recent events for me is the sign of Finn’s potential re-emergence. I’ve been a fan since seeing him early on at Middlesex. He always seemed to me to have ‘Test match opening bowler’ written all over him.

  • Hi everyone. Thanks for your comments. Any ideas on a nickname for Woakes? I’m afraid ‘Woakesy’ isn’t going to cut it. Nor ‘Chrissy’ for that matter. Perhaps we should just invent a name. What about ‘Dave’ (seems random enough).

  • Been impressed with Taylor for a long time. He clearly knows how to play one day cricket. Hard to make judgements on the team given that wicket was poor but it only makes Taylor’s and Buttler’s innings more remarkable.

    Yes, Morgan’s team has revived my interest in England. Broad is a concern. He’s not bowling fast. Something’s not right about Bopara and I hope Ali gives us a good score soon. However, it feels to me that this team really wants to win.

  • Moores hasn’t said much of late…Morgan’s been doing all the talking? If I was a conspiracy theorist I might say there was a “dossier” in the offing????

    • The Irish like to talk and Morgan does it well. Why spoil a good thing by getting Moores on? Long may we be spared.

      I think there is certainly a long term question mark over Morgan.

  • England aren’t going to win this one. We’re an improving side learning how to play ODIs properly for the first time ever, but we just don’t have the consistency or experience needed to beat the top teams yet.

    The big question is: once the WC is over (whatever the result), will the ECB go back to not taking ODI cricket seriously until the eve of the next WC, or will we see a sustained effort to build and maintain a world-beating ODI side over the next 4 years, and then into the future?

  • Michael Clarke made fifty in his first comeback match in grade cricket since his hamstring injury.

    His post-match quote about that Sydney Morning Herald story, ““It’s water off a duck’s back for me. I’ve copped it my whole career so it’s another day, another newspaper sold”, was a bit better than “something must be done”.

    Nicely judged ““I still think we can win it without him, but I’ll certainly prefer to win it with him” from George Bailey too.

    • Good spots, Simon. During the 2013 Ashes I slightly bristled at the constant bigging-up of Clarke over Cook, but I was wrong. Clarke is everything Cook isn’t as a captain, and especially a public-speaker – authoritative, dignified, statesmanlike, mature, worldly, thick-skinned, diplomatic and magnanimous. By contrast, Cook’s rambling self-pity is an embarrassment.

      As for Bailey, his reply – to a very awkward question – was unimproveable: loyal in every direction, and deadly accurate.

  • He does bear an uncanny resemblance to Ryan Gosling (especially from his Mickey Mouse club days) – I’ll leave it to somebody more clever than me to make something of that…..


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