Saturday, 20 July 2013

Derbyshire v Durham T20 preview

Life is full of surprises. I experienced that this afternoon.

Our delightful sixteen year old daughter was listening to music in the back garden when I joined her in the late afternoon sunshine. It has been another lovely day and she had her earphones in. I asked her what she was listening to.

"Blues" was her reply. "It's a compilation with John Lee Hooker, Memphis Minnie, Sleepy John Estes, Robert Johnson and loads of others...stuff that influenced Led Zeppelin".

Given that her musical taste is eclectic and unashamedly retro, I perhaps shouldn't have been surprised, but the contrast with most girls of her age made me smile.

I think most Derbyshire fans, like her, have the blues right now and it was patently obvious from the chairman's tweets today that he is hurting as much as the rest of us.

"We will get it back on track" he said and there's no reason to disbelieve him. He is a good man and passionate about the club, tireless in his work on its behalf. I suspect that the getting back on track will be longer term, but I try to stop my train of thought going down that particular track. Hope you saw what I did there...

A good time to start would be tomorrow's game against Durham at Chesterfield, one that we should be starting from a position of unprecedented strength. We were in a good position at Old Trafford and lost control after Chanderpaul's injury, while against Yorkshire our excellent bowling should have left the run chase a literal walk in the park. But it didn't.

Until we acquire the skills, or the players, to milk the spinners around in the middle of the innings when the field goes back, our success rate in run chases will usually be less than 50/50. We must not and can not expect Albie Morkel to score 20-odd off the last over every time and greater common sense through the innings is essential. Last week I noted that one third of our innings were dot balls and we can't afford such wastage. No side can.

Were tomorrow's game another championship fixture, I suspect that the side would not include Wes Durston and Dan Redfern, after further failures in what have been difficult seasons this week. As it is, both should appear tomorrow, as their roles in T20 are important to the side and, let's be honest, we're not awash with alternatives.

I doubt we will see the return of Shivnarine Chanderpaul, so the team is likely to be pretty much as was defeated on Sunday. Had Durston  not been injured we could have won that one, though the run out of Wayne Madsen was crucial to the final outcome. For all that some bemoan our chasing totals, I still feel that it represents our best chance of a win, with the opposition hopefully over-reaching and leaving us something attainable.

A win would do much for morale, but Durham, despite a poor T20 campaign, won at Trent Bridge on Friday and have some powerful strikers of the ball. They will also have Graham Onions to lead the attack and will present stiff opposition, as we know all too well from the Riverside last week.

My forecast? I'd love to be positive and predict a win, but the sunny weather has been diametrically opposed to our standard of cricket this week at Chesterfield. If we can pull off a win tomorrow we are very much in the shake up for the quarter finals.

If we don't, we're deeper into the blues than Robert Johnson and our season has quite possibly gone past the crossroads...


creweblade said...

Peakfan - good to see Chris Grant's comments and his hurting - im just dissapointed Messers Krikken and Houghton dont feel obliged to comment because they damn well should - the buck stops with them - they are the coaches and clearley arent doing enough! i will be at chessie again tomorrow supporting the team but i just hope our highly paid coaches are looking in the mirror to see if they are doing enough - if not chis must act!

Peakfan said...

To be fair mate Krikk did say that he would rather have his whatsits beaten than see another display like that. I take your point and coaches are always held responsible but players need to take responsibility. As Dennis Smith used to say, no one can bat for them or hold their hand in the middle. Yet he was coach for a long time when failure was accepted and people more tolerant. Different days!

Tim, Chesterfield said...

I'm sorry to admit today is just about the first time in my life I've made no attempt to attend a game at Queens Park when I am able to.

Hope they prove me wrong.

bails1947 said...

Memories of an old man. I remember going to the Derbyshire indoor school with a local team around 1956.It was my turn to bat and Dennis Smith stood behind the net, after a few balls he came round,altered my stance, showed me how to bring the bat down from over the wicket rather than first slip. That year I scored more runs than in past seasons( to be fair wasn't that many!)
Great man Dennis and to be fair the Derbyshire side of that time wasn't that bad.Didn't win anything but enjoyed watching them.xFebsp

Paul said...

For those that did not go today picture the scene-

Durham chasing a modest target on a dreadfully slow low pitch ( last weeks Yorkshire T20 wicket) are dropping more and more behind the rate with 4 good men back in the hut. Derbyshire against all odds look like winning a game with 6 different bowlers already used including 4 spinners and all with good figures.

" home and dry here " I said to my mate.

But wait Captain Madsen has thrown the ball to Turner.

What?!!!! Pace off has worked so far so the captain throws the ball to the usually expensive Turner. Result - 12 off his over.

Well it's only one over I thought to myself so we still have a chance. Amazingly Turner is given another over which exceeds the previous one in incompetence and goes for 13.

Match lost!

Now so far this season I have had a lot of sympathy for Madsen captaining an inept team and leading by example with lots of runs.

He appears good on the man management side but some of his decision making in one day games leaves a lot to be desired. Today though regarding Turner was one of the most crass decisions I have witnessed from a Derbyshire captain and totally unnecessary and lost us the match without doubt. Shameful !

I can only assume Morkel is injured having only bowled 2 overs otherwise.....

Peakfan said...

Yes Paul, Morkel was injured today. To be fair to the skipper, we all make mistakes and he had to get four overs of seam in from someone, somewhere. As the second over did for Footitt at Leicester, sometimes it works for you, sometimes it doesn't.
That's captaincy in a nutshell. get it right you're a genius. Wrong and you're daft...but only in the eyes of fans, who are wise after the event when it is much easier!

Paul said...

That's the whole point I am making Peakfan.

As I mentioned the pitch was terribly low and slow and difficult for batsmen to get the ball away.

Our 4 spinners all had good figures not withstanding they had bowled in the power play. They had enough overs in the bag so that Turner did not have to bowl. This is NOT being wise after the event as there was disquiet in a large Chesterfield crowd when he was thrown the ball as many of us had seen the wretched dispay in the championship match.

To be given a second over resulted in understandable barracking of Madsen from a proportion of the crowd.

Turner is wholehearted but should not have bowled.

I hope Madsen was not being stubborn with his second over decision because as I mentioned in my first post I think he has done a good job on the whole as captain and the team seem to hold him in high esteem.

I realise captains live or die by their decisions but for captains to keep the respect of their team they need to get more right than wrong. At the moment Madsen is in credit in my opinion and long may that continue.

Peakfan said...

Fair comment Paul. Good memories Bails 1947. Would like to hear more of your memories of a side that had some fine players!