Saturday, 29 August 2009

Overseas nightmare

One big job facing John Morris this winter is sorting out the overseas player and while there's a great deal of conjecture, much will come down to availability, rather than necessarily choice.

For example, in late April and the first half of May next year, the World Twenty/20 will be played in the Caribbean, so that takes out a lot of top players for three weeks.

Then England will play two npower Test matches against Bangladesh and three One day Internationals in the period from May 27 to June 17, 2010, followed by a further five One day Internationals against Australia from June 22 to July 3 .

Australia will play Pakistan in two T20 Internationals and two Test matches here from July 5 to July 25, then England will then play a four match npower Test Series with Pakistan from July 29 to Agust 30 and five ODIs and two International Twenty20s from September 5 to 21.

So we can pretty much write off anyone who plays in Australian or Pakistani one day sides for most of the summer. So there's little chance of Cameron White, James Hopes, Shane Watson or Shahid Afridi.

The rest of the international calendar has still to be confirmed, but you can bet your bottom dollar there'll be Dubai competitions for Sri Lanka and/or India. Which leaves South Africa and New Zealand as sides who at present are clear of commitments (Twenty/20 apart) - but for how long? There's the West Indies, but how many players of real county class do they have? Chris Gayle is a brilliant talent, but I wouldn't back him to be a huge county success as he wasn't at Worcestershire in a brief spell. Mind you, I'd like to be there when he came off! Sarwan? Maybe, but would he come? The South Africans are not keen on their best players taking up County stints, so it is going to be a problem. New Zealand's best are on the go all year round and so it continues.

Unless Chris Rogers gets a Test recall, I can see John Morris spending a lot of time on the phone this winter.

I've heard there's some good young players in Tibet...

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