Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Derbyshire v Gloucestershire day 1

At the end of an absorbing first day at Derby, our boys will be pretty satisfied with their day's work.

There was a hard earned century for skipper Wayne Madsen and attractive fifties for both Wes Durston and Daniel Redfern. Meanwhile Ross Whiteley, Martin Guptill and Jonathan Clare all made valuable contributions and 362-9 represents a good day, even if at one point, at 250-3, it looked like being even better.

I was delighted for the skipper, but anyone who didn't see this coming needs a trip to a well known high street optical store. He's a class act and once he got through to lunch I had a feeling that he would cash in during the afternoon. Durston too appeared in good nick and might be a little annoyed that he didn't go on to the century mark himself.

The visitors will not be unhappy at clawing things back, but Derbyshire now have runs on the board and importantly, with bad weather likely to interrupt the next two days, have scored their runs quick enough to enable a positive result to be possible unless it is especially bad. Four an over on a track that offered something for bowlers was a very good effort.

Paul Borrington failed today and I had no doubt that there would be comment on that before the evening had passed, but anyone can get out early, before feet, hands and eyes are in full coordination. To suggest that we now need to sign someone to partner Guptill at the top of the order is bizarre in my humble opinion - sorry mate. Even if Karl Krikken shared the views of a small minority that Bozza needs to be dropped, we still have two other openers, Matt Lineker and Chesney Hughes on the staff! More to the point, given that players are now contracted for the season, who would we sign?

Also keep in mind that when Martin Guptill finishes next month that we may need to change the order a little anyway to accommodate Usman Khawaja, unless the plan is for the Australian to go in first this year. I do get the feeling that there are purported fans out there waiting for Borrington to fail, just so they can have a moan. and it is patently unfair on a local boy who never gives it away, whether it is good or bad conditions for batting.

Speaking of signings, I'd an early e mail today suggesting we should sign Ajmal Shahzad after his release by Yorkshire. I'm not sure what's gone on there, although if the lad retains England ambitions he must surely be vexed that his club have signed an overseas quick in Mitchell Starc who will presumably take the new ball with Ryan Sidebottom, leaving him as first change. It is an odd move, a short sighted one and in its swift and abrupt method a typically Yorkshire one.

I don't see it happening. For one, he will want top division cricket and for another, as a player of England experience, he will cost big money. Equally, do we really need another seamer at this stage? With Footitt, Turner and Evans (not to mention Higginbottom) outside the team, who are we going to leave out in Palladino, Groenewald and Clare?

No, the lad will likely end up at Somerset, who have money to spend and an injury list so bad that the physio has installed a revolving door.

Finally tonight, Greg Smith's torrid start at Essex continued today with another cheap dismissal. That's just forty season runs for Smudge so far and he has a long way to go to convince the locals of his talents.

Unlike our lads, who have done well again today. May tomorrow bring a few more runs and plenty of wickets...


notoveryet said...

Sorry, Peakfan, I don't agree on Borrington, and that's not from a purported fan waiting to see him fail. He could become an honest workman like his dad (who I played school cricket with more years ago than I want to remember) but Hughes is a class act. Even in a poor year, he did better in 2011 than Borrington has so far. I mentioned the other night the possibility that his slow scoring when he bats with Guptill puts pressure on Madsen and Durston, and the fact that he went early and they scored well may not be a coincidence.

Your point about what happens when Guptill goes is relevant too. Khuwaja probably won't open, so unless Madsen goes back to open (I'd actally like to see this but I don't think it will happen) the longer the Borrington / Guptill pairing goes on, the more liely it is that we will have an opening pair of Hughes without any first class cricket in the frst two months, and Borrington ploughing a strokeless furrow. Opening with Guptill, Hughes will get the chance of re-establishing his form from two years ago, and Borrington then gets an opportunity again alongside a batsman who has established some form.

I think Borrington is worth persevering with and will become a very useful player for us in a more mature batting line up. At the moment though, he adds stagnation when Guptill's in full flow, and fails when Guptill does - apart from today, when the middle order was able to take its time rather than trying to accelerate a sluggish scoring rate.

Martin Edwards said...

I'm with you, Peakfan, on Paul Borrington. We need a grafter along with the dashing stroke players, and Borrington has the potential to hold the top order together for years to come. Given the nature of current pitches, he deserves an extended run - excellent player though Chesney is.

As for seamers, though, injury and loss of form can always strike, so another decent pace bowler would surely always be welcome.

Washy said...

I can't see Hughes and Borrington opening, as that would leave 4 places for our best 5 batsmen, Madsen, Durston, Redfern, Whiteley, Khawaja.
My guess is Madsen will open or Usman will be given the duty, you have to play your best players. I feel sorry for Borrington, for all the criticism he's recieved, i think he's done a decent job in a difficult situation. However i do think Hughes is a classier player and has the ability to win matches on his own, but you need a blend in your team.

Anyway onto today, it was great that we scored a sizeable total, get some batting bonus points and put the pressure on Gloucs. Deligted for Madsen, century will do his confidence a world of good, and positive knocks from Durston, Redfern and Whiteley. Good day all round

Marc said...

Win toss,bat and put a total on the board. We did all three very well today and have put ourselves in a decent position.

An added bonus was seeing Madsen and Durston get themselves going. We need those two to perform on a regular basis,so hopefully they can now go on any make the sort of scores they are both capable of. Useful knocks too from Reddfern and Whiteley. If we can get a lead of around a hundred i,m confident we can go on to win. Batting wont be quite so easy today with some cloud cover.

The Borrington debate is still very active. I still remain doubtfull as to his ability to cut it at this level. So far he has only had one score of note apart from the relatively pressure free second innings against Leicestershire. The biggest criticism seems to be his inability to accelerate. Fair enough,an opening batsman has a role to see off the new ball and defensive play is fine for the first twelve to fifteen overs. After that though,you have to score runs at a reasonable rate. At the moment he struggles to manage one run per over. Its a fine line between reliability and liability. There will be occasions his style of play may be useful,but there will be others where it could cost us dearly. I don,t think you can blame early season pitches,as this problem remains the same whatever time of year it may be. The big advantage with Hughes is if he gets in,he gets going.

Mark said...

I think we're all going to have to agree to disagree on Borrington at this moment in time. My thoughts at the moment are centered around St.James's Park Newcastle this sunday, where my team City, have to win to put a foothold on the prem league. And before anyone starts I've been a keen follower for 33 years, so none of this bandwagon talk please. Come on City and Derbys.

Peakfan said...

Good comments gentlemen and well presented. Tonight's blog will appear soon and is another I look forward to writing immensely...