Where do England go from here? Your views

So defeat came as expected. It was a dismal, pathetic and even somewhat comical surrender in the end.

Prior is stepping down (the right decision) but Cook wants to stay on as England captain (probably the wrong one). The ECB are unlikely to make many changes in my opinion, as their fates are intertwined with Cook’s. But something’s got to give, surely?

We’re not going to nail our colours to any particular mast at this point. England’s problems are too complex to jump to firm conclusions now. However, we’d welcome your thoughts on where England could or should go from here.

Is Vaughan onto something by suggesting Eoin Morgan should step up from ODI skipper (in Cook’s absence) to test captain?

Should Bell, Root, or Broad take the job?

And who should replace Prior? Buttler is the obvious choice, but Stephen Brenkley had a leftfield suggestion that kills two birds with one stone: Chris Read comes in as skipper.

It’s a crazy thought, but these are crazy times.

Over to you folks ….

James & Maxie


    • Yes and get rid of the current ECB management. Well I say management but I should use that very lightly indeed. I should put all the blame at their door for the total fiasco that is England Cricket. I am shocked and dismayed by what has happened. I feel disgusted by the treatment of the players since Downton took over. What a PR disaster is this man. In the real world he would have been kicked out long ago. Utterly moronic. Giles Clark money and power grabbing. Bit like an old fashioned colonialist. How does England Cricket survive with such people at the helm? Well clearly it doesn’t. They all ought to be sacked, contract or no contract. It is the ECB who has brought England Cricket into disrepute and of course all the hangers on. Certainly Flower is still in the frame. The management stinks. Cook, et al, is just part of their poor management. Not sure when the ECB Lackeys are going to catch up, I expect they will blame anything and anyone for the failures of this team!

  • Glad to see Prior stepping down if he’s injured. England need to manage Broad and Anderson so they may need to leave one out (though Anderson may of course be banned).

    Two games ago I wouldn’t have picked Buttler but he can keep worse than an injured Prior and has X-factor with the bat. Why not play him?

    As for Cook… It’s admirable that he wants to stay and sort it out – it’s that steely determination that he shows with the bat. But however determined I am, I’m never going to be a test cricketer. He needs to focus on his batting and England won’t be worse off with someone else at the helm. I don’t know who as I don’t know the players but it has to be from within the squad – we can’t have another Chris Cowdery…

  • It has to be Gary Wilson. Bats, keeps, skippers and most importantly went to the right school.

  • Agreed with MV about Morgan, he’s been my choice for a while, and a guy with hugely unfulfilled potential as a batsman and as a skipper. His press interview after the last ODI had none of the usual soundbites and cliches we have come to expect from the well coached England representatives, and he came across as honest determined and different. A man with a good cricketing brain too…definitely worth a punt, after all….what’s to lose???

  • Where to start?

    Cook’s problems are mental and technical. Opponents have worked out how to bowl to him and the lack of runs is leading to a lack of confidence and increased pressure on his captaincy. He’s always been a lead by example captain rather than a tactical genius.
    He needs time to work on his game and get runs but the county season is near the end so the next best thing is to get away completely for six months and maybe the odd net session with Gooch. By surrendering the captaincy now he can take a break and possibley step back into the job against the Windies if no other strong candidate emerges.
    The obvious replacement is Bell with Broad next, Read is a good shout but a new guy coming into a team and ordering round established players could cause disruption.

    If Prior was fit I would have given him a go as captain as it is Butler will take over from him. I think they rushed Prior back but understandably so given they had inexperienced bowlers in Jordan Gurney and Ali in the side.

    The lack of a spinner is a problem that will take a while to solve but if they fancy Kerrigan for the job they might as well play him now rather than wait for The Ashes. Modern isn’t the answer he’s a batsmen and should be used as such. Broad and Anderson are being flogged to death and I can’t understand why one of them wasn’t dropped for Jordan to give them a rest. Also I’m not sure what Stokes brings to the team yet.

    So really we’re looking at Butler for Prior, a replacement for Cook with Lyth the next one of the rank unless they want to move Root up the order. Kerrigan or A.N Other spinner should be blooded now rather than later and Broad and Anderson to be rotated with Jordan possibly Gurney to rest the former and blood the latter.
    Also where’s Saker in all of this? First it’s Finn and now we can’t to seem to bowl the right line and length, he needs to front up and answer some questions.

    The writing was on the wall against New Zealand, McCullum out thought England using his squad well and having plans for each batsmen, the Kiwis pushed England hard. England have been playing Flowers dour attritional percentage cricket for too long and haven’t got a Plan B, Moore’s needs to come up with a new style and it’s not gonna happen whilst the teams in flux but that’s no excuse for not doing the basics.

    Finally and most importantly the bloody KP saga needs to be dropped. He isn’t coming back not while the current management are in charge and they aren’t going anywhere soon. The confidentiality clause was a massive mistake the ECB should have held a press conference and stated their reasons clearly for all to hear. By maintaining this ridiculous silence they simply play into KP’s hands allowing to release a book in the Autumn giving his version of events and making a lot of cash. Regardless of where you stand on the issue it is a poison that that needs to be removed from the game. As anybody who’s seen the Twitter arguments raging back and forth will testify nobody comes out of this episode covered in glory be it fans, ECB, journalists, players or the players ‘media supporters’.

    It shouldn’t be too much of a problem to bring in new players it’s the coaches that should be looking in the mirror.

    • Finally and most importantly the bloody KP saga needs to be dropped. He isn’t coming back not while the current management are in charge and they aren’t going anywhere soon

      Except the problem isn’t Pietersen; it is the management.

      I’m not even sure what ‘dropping the KP saga’ even means.
      Putting him back in the team – or making him disappear off the face of the earth – would not even begin to solve England’s problems.

      The Pietersen affair is a just symptom (albeit an important one), not the cause of England’s problems.

  • Tonight, J&M, I really don’t care.

    I’m hoping a day watching Division 2 cricket tomorrow replenishes the batteries.

  • I find it baffling that Cook goes out of his way to big prior up and say his place in the side is assured only for prior to drop himself a few hours later? Basically anyone who now comes in will know that no matter how well they play, they are just keeping the gloves warm for prior. More terrible management.

  • Shane Warne coach, Kevin Pietersen captain, Jos Buttler keeper, and get Alex Hales into the ODI side. It won’t happen but having people like Peter Moores around the set up will just send England further backwards. Cook is a huge asset as an opener but as captain he’s nothing short of hopeless. I’d drop Bell and tell him to go way and think for the rest of the season about whether he wants to step up and be a senior player or retire from international cricket and let the likes of Adam Lyth and James Taylor play. England set up is too cosy and Paul Downton has been utterly pathetic so far.

  • First off this notion there is no one else is rubbish. There is always some one else. If Cook did resign, are we seriously saying the ECB would turn up at Southampton and say…….. ” unfortunately because there is no one else England will take to the field with no captain.” ……..

    The truth is the ECB don’t want anyone else. And that is at the heart of so many of the problems. Cook is their man ,and his good schooling, good family breeding, and telegenic image (which is good for sponsors. A Prime ECB priority) is more important than whether he is a actually a good captain tactically. And that is before you take into account that Cook is the symbol of the “new era.” The new era that everyone at the ECB has bought into.

    So Cook stays and England will stumble and bumble along. Not that I am a great fan of his, but If I was Peter Moores I would be quite worried that I might turn into the David Moyes figure of English cricket. Following on from a long standing coach ,big changes are needed, but he can’t make them. Watch your back Moores because they will dump you before the golden boy.

    • Well quite. If he tripped on the top step tomorrow and broke his leg, we wouldn’t field ten men + a cardboard cutout of Cooky.

      • I think Giles Clarke would be more than happy to carry out onto the pitch a cardboard cut out of Cook. He would even run on every over and move it about.

        Selvey and Pringle could sit in the press box and tell us how difficult it is to be a cardboard cut out in the modern era. “in many ways Alastair’s cut out is a throw back to a gentler time when cut outs were polite.”

        I think some of the Sky commentators are beginning to turn. They may be under instructions from ECB to be not too critical. (Even warne has toned it down) but they have their own reputations to consider. Lord Gower will hold out to the end,and go down with the sinking ship. But only to magically resurface with who ever is the next captain. (One of the perks of being an establishment toady is there is never a penalty for being wrong)

  • I would love for James Foster to be given a crack at keeper, but he probably doesn’t offer enough with the bat. In light of that, I suppose it has to be Buttler really.

  • Prior is (was?) the best English batsman- keeper that I have seen. However, he was dropped for poor form and then recalled despite not having proven that he had regained form and whilst being under an injury cloud. Predictably, it has not ended well.

    This seems incredibly unfair to Nick Compton who was also dropped for poor form, then made runs in county cricket and yet has been ignored by the selectors. According to Dobell it is because a mysterious “coterie of senior players” don’t like him. Well, “senior players” (and I’m guessing it was Swann, Broad, Prior, Cook and Anderson) shouldn’t get to call the shots, particularly when they aren’t delivering results.

    I can’t help but wonder how unpleasant and childish the England dressing room has been in recent times. KP’s book might prove quite interesting.

    I’m sorry for being off topic but I am almost incoherent with anger.

    • Yes I found the comments about Compton extremely interesting. By all accounts he’s a good pro …. Maybe a bit too South African ;-)

      Thanks for all your comments everyone. Interesting times.

    • Something stinks about the way Compton was treated. Another face that did not fit in. The England set up of the last 5 years seems to have a problem with people who are not “one of us.” (Whatever that is)

      Onions (he would have bowled well on that green pitch on Friday)
      Flynn (he fitted in but they had to mess about with his bowling action)

        • Yes he should. Another character who was not seen as normal, a bit flakey.(and that was before his current problems) Not staunch yeoman material. Some pundit on the radio was trying to claim that England’s win in India was all down to Cook. Not a mention of Monty, Swann, or the Kevin fella who can’t be mentioned.

          It’s worth remembering that for a long time (not now) Gooch was having a say in the dressing room. When he was captain he did not deal well with characters a bit different. Gower and Botham come to mind. If you were not up for a team run back to the hotel after the game, eyebrows would be raised.

  • The continued obsession with Read makes me laugh. The ability to score runs batting at number seven (or higher) is a prerequisite for wicketkeepers nowadays and Read simply doesn’t have it.

    • The ability to score runs when opening the batting is rather more of a prerequisite.
      While I am not in the Read camp, replacing both keeper and captain with one player is not a ridiculous idea. At least we would have a keeper who can do his job – and the possibility of an opener who could do likewise.

      That Read would not be a ridiculous suggestion is a mark of just how deep the malaise has become.

  • This is no time for haste.

    I put it out on twitter that all 5 senior pros could easily be dropped for Sunday, I had replies suggesting they should!
    I settled on two of them (Prior & Broad) well Prior has already gone due to injury and the suggestions are Broad isn’t far away either.

    Personally I feel Cook should get the series, I thought his captaincy was fine in this test and his bowlers seriously let him down on Day 1. Ok he isn’t getting the runs we need but I suppose you just have to hope he clicks in at least 1 innings for us to make a big score.

    I would bring James Foster in for Prior as I feel we need an experienced ‘keeper and Cook also needs a mate.

    Jordan back for Stokes (should never have been dropped in the first place) and Kerrigan in for Broad.

    Oh and the first sacking if there are any should be David Saker. How this man is in a job is beyond me.

    • Agree with this analysis… the wicket keeper selection is not clear cut, I think they were hoping Prior’s limbs would hold out for the summer and give Buttler a full season in the County Champs keeping/batting (correct me if I’m wrong) he hasn’t kept in 1st class cricket consistently up until his move to Lancs this season?

      Re: Chris Read and the chap above who laughed off his credentials, he’s among the very best glovemen in England, captain of the top Div 1 team and averages 45 this season (higher than Buttler, Compton, Kieswetter) if they still don’t think Buttler’s ready to keep in a test then Read would be a great choice to step in for the rest of the series, given the Mike Newell’s new role as selector it could be possible, plus he’s younger than the Aussies current keeper ;)

      • Anyone remember my article criticising the ECB for appointing two selectors currently full time employees of counties? This is why. How can Newell be objective in his assessment of Read’s credentials? If he selects Reid for England, then his main employers (the team which needs to do well for the sake of his main employment and financial security) suddenly loses their captain and arguably most influential player. Yet the ECB say “what conflict of interest?”

    • I agree with that pretty much, actually.

      Now is the time for the carefully considered decision making process that was startingly absent in the wake of the winter’s debacle!

      I agree re Cook’s on field captaincy has improved a little bit, well the fact he occassionally responded on the field, has been a bit better…however his two most senior bowlers seemingly can’t bowl to the fields he sets or they ignore him completely, so still not excactly what you would call an inspiring & instinctive leader or tactical genius.

      Nasser’s rant at the end of play yesterday pretty much said it all; even if he (somehow) starts scoring runs, that isn’t going to magically fix the myriad other problems we face. There is not a single element of Cook’s onfield cpataincy that makes us a better team. A traffic cone would be equally ineffective. But changing mid series is a massive gamble that could make things even worse…although I’m not sure how much worse things can actually get

      Broad is patently unfit, needs some proper rehab on his knee, even if that means he sits out for 3-4 months. He was the one bowler who was consistently decent in the winter and he has looked down on pace all summer.

      On the reaction to Prior’s retirement in all but name, has been an excellent player, has been rubbish for since the NZ tour and shouldn’t have been picked for any of the tests this summer. He deserves whatever plaudits for his past achievements but some of the gushing praise only further serves to underline the point made by George Dobell in his piece…seemingly if your face doesn’t fit in the dressing room, neither does it in the press box.

      Because whilst there was deserving fullsome praise for another recent retiree (this one not voluntary) from general sports writers, the cricket press pack damned with faint praise if they could be bothered to praise at all, most were to busy crowing…about hte departure of our all time leading run scorer in all forms of the game….not through injury or loss of comparitive form at the time…

      It’s hard not to conclude that there is an awful lot wrong with the senior men’s team at the minute, the way it’s run, the players that hang around i nthe set up for a long time, the coaches and some of the people that cover it. The collective in bilty of a group that numbers in the hundred to see what has been so blatently obvious to so many for the last year is reflective of an astonishing level of complacency that it at time hard to believe.

    • “Personally I feel Cook should get the series, I thought his captaincy was fine in this test and his bowlers seriously let him down on Day 1. Ok he isn’t getting the runs we need but I suppose you just have to hope he clicks in at least 1 innings for us to make a big score.”

      Mind boggles! These sort of unintelligent comments do my head in.

  • Since the England players pissed on The Oval pitch, their Test record stands at: Played 9, Won 0, Lost 7, Drawn 2.

    Prior gone, Stokes to go, Cook should go, Jimmy banned, Broad falling apart and Bell horribly out of form – what a mess.

    Moral of the story – don’t piss on the pitch that feeds you!

  • I’d like to see Read in for Prior and captain, Compton for Cook and Onions for Anderson and Jordan for Broad..

    • Now the vice captain has fallen on his sword, I doubt if they will get rid of Cook as well. That would be too much an admission of failure.

  • I thought that Cook’s post match interview was particularly telling. When asked about the shocking performances of the England batsman after lunch yesterday – and what could or should be done about it – he clearly had no idea. Now – given that he apparently has no idea how to fix his own performance it is no surprise that he doesn’t feel able or qualified to critique others. However – that is what leadership is all about… the ability to motivate and inspire others even when you are under-performing yourself. Much has been said concerning Cook’s lack of tactical nous – and I would not disagree with any of it. What concerns me more – though – is that he simply isn’t a leader of men.

    And right now that is what England needs desperately…

  • Would be interesting to see a “Discarded” England XI against the current Team…

    1. Carberry
    2. Compton
    3. Taylor
    4. KP (c)
    5. Bopara
    6. Patel
    7. Bairstow (wk)
    8. Bresnan
    9. Onions

    Looks pretty tasty, and I have probably missed a few!

  • England need some changes
    Moeen ali

    should be dropped

    need i quickie like rankin
    spinner like treadwell
    2 batters, whats wrong with morgan and butler?

    and play aggressive which is england main feature .

    try and next test u will win

    make fast – fast fast picthes not dead… u are not playing in india

  • Can’t help thinking we need to rediscover some old-fashioned batting basics like:
    Watch the ball – even when ducking.
    Move feet to play forward or back.
    Left elbow up, especially early in innings.
    Play straight, especially early in innings.
    Don’t hook till well set … and (dare I say?)
    Play in the spirit of the game.

  • It appears from SkySports that Cookie and Mooresy have been having a chat and they think they can ‘turn things around’ …. blah blah blah

    Cook, the right person from the right family etc ….





    he’s just like any of us ….!!!!!!!!!!

  • I’m quite clearly biased, but if you’re looking for a leftfield option from outside the team, I offer you (once again) Paul Collingwood. Unlike Read and Morgan (both of whom were found out at Test level) he’s done it all for England and worked miracles at Durham, making them much more than the sum of their parts. He’s not been away long from the England set up, but just long enough to have no association with the madness of the last two years.

  • If Stokes is dropped for Jordan or Broad for Woakes, even if the decisions are made for good cricketing reasons, any player dropped will be forgiven for thinking ‘Why me and not Cook?’

    Some inner workings of Cook’s brain were revealed in the post match interviews. On the one hand, Cook guarantees Prior could stay in the team as long as he wanted. On the other, apparently it was not Cook’s place to bollock the bowlers for failing to do their basic job. Pick the bones out of that for hamstringing the selectors and then not taking any responsibility for game management. This is meant to be international cricket not playground fun with your best mates!

    And perhaps Peter Moores, the best coach of his generation, could explain who came up with bright idea of changing batting tactics after lunch to a gung-ho swing fest when the sensible pre-lunch 2.5 runs an over would have won England the game?

    It’s transitioned from bollocks to bonkers! How many times do we have to reference events to the definition of madness? It is all so unbelievably improbable, it must be me that’s gone insane.

    • that’s all very well but Cookie and Mooresy have come up wit a cunning plan to ‘turn things around’

  • Many, many thanks for all your comments, and apologies we haven’t been able to respond to every one.

  • Where do England go from here? The usual embarrasing World Cup and a thrashing in the Ashes next year.

    As the man in the jumper nearly said, cricket is a funny old game and Cook may score a 170 in the next game. Or he will get 16 and 3, England will lose and he will be finished.

  • England really are in a right old mess, sadly a mess of their own making and, it seems, no where to go. The talk of rebuilding the side is being totally hampered by the senior players who simply don’t seem up to it any longer, or actually don’t have the motivation any longer. In Cook, Bell, Prior, Broad and Anderson, the core spine of the side they look completely damaged and being shown up by the youngsters. Broad and Anderson look knackered, Bell is a walking wicket and Cook haunted by the past and fear of failure.

    Time to change (although nothing will)! How about blooding more youngsters and getting rid of the older, more experienced and possibly toxic damaged players?

    Cook, I believe still has a big future, but not as captain. I keep hearing people saying Joe Root cant be captain yet, too young, too inexperienced etc. perhaps that’s what we need? Younger, fresher ideas… look what happened with Graeme Smith?

    Bell should go and so should Broad, for the moment.

    We need a proper spinner, I’ve no problem with bringing in a youngster, although not Kerrigan. My choice would be Adam Riley – back him! The middle order needs a little more flair, James Vince seems like the man to me and I’d stick with Robson for the moment. Sadly Moeen doesnt make it as there are better players, both to bat and bowl. I would keep Stokes and push him up to number 6 where he did well in the winter for England. You do have to question how a wonderful young prospect now bats like a tail ender? What is the message or method from the England coaches? Alex Lees would be standby opener.

    Therefore, my side as follows:

    1. Cook
    2. Robson
    3. Ballance
    4. Vince
    5. Root (capt)
    6. Stokes
    7. Buttler
    8. Woakes
    9. Jordan
    10. Plunkett
    11. Riley

    Anderson and Broad to be rested for the rest of the summer. I would love to see Finn back but probably still too damaged. What are England’s other bowling options?


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