Monday, 23 June 2008

Lancashire v Derbyshire

Well and truly gubbed by the Red Rose again.

I can't believe that in two matches against them in the 20/20 we only took one wicket. Vincent is a decent player but Loye is nothing special and after a more encouraging batting display the bowling was, without the injured Charl Langeveldt, pretty toothless.

To score 150 at Old Trafford is good going and full marks to Wavell and Pipe for a battling partnership that at least made a game of it. Hinds is proving a good acquisition, and although not a "top drawer" West Indian is a good, solid pro.

I can understand Tom Lungley being a little rusty after injury, but am a little baffled as to why, amid the carnage, Clare didn't get a bowl. If everyone else was keeping it tight it would have made sense but if not, lets see who might be putting it on the spot.

One who wasn't and who is under pressure right now is the captain. 1-0-22-0 and three runs with the bat is poor return for a man who is supposedly aiming to get back in the England frame.
I don't doubt that Rikki is a player of talent, but he needs to start showing it fast. I have no doubt that getting him to Derby required a sizeable salary and it represented a coup, but at this stage we are considerably down on the investment. The problem is that a batsman with panache like Clarke at his best can quickly look like a batsman of irresponsibility when it is not going his way. I am sure that he must be feeling the pressure at present and really, genuinely hope he emerges from this trough.

I hope it is quick though. The 20/20 is no longer an option for us - irrespective of what the website said it wasn't anyway, as it would have needed too many results going our way. We must now regroup and do better in the Pro 40 and on our return to Championship action.

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