Thursday, 19 May 2016

Time we made a decent fist of T20

Derbyshire and T20 haven't mixed in recent years. OK, in any years. Our efforts at competing each year have at times been pitiful, at others frustrating but always underwhelming.

It has not been for the want of trying. There has been a range of big name signings, most notably last year, when the Amla/Dilshan combo patently failed to work. It should have, to be fair, but the former was out of touch and the latter, sadly, some way past his prime.

This year? Well, there is a trio of Kiwis - triwis, if you will - who could just bring their nation's nous at the format to the 3aaa County Ground. While neither Hamish Rutherford or Neil Broom have been in the best of touch so far, sometimes going and giving the ball a smack is just what the doctor orders.

The arrival of their fellow countryman, Jimmy Neesham, could prove a catalyst for them and for their team. Neesham, probably the most entertaining cricketer on Twitter, comes over as a genuine personality who combines sharp wit off the field with rare ability to excite with bat and ball on it. A back injury has set him back for twelve months, but now, fully fit, he will look to use the English competition as a springboard back into the New Zealand side.

He had a good start today, making 65 from 41 balls as a Derbyshire 'Second XI' beat the Unicorns twice. There were runs for his compatriots too, as well as for Alex Hughes, while it was great to see Tom Knight back in the wickets, taking 3-19 in the second game. Ben Slater took two with his leggies, with which he will doubtless be chuffed to the power ten...

Selection is going to be challenging for the right reasons, but I would love to see something close to this side on Saturday at Old Trafford:

Hughes (C)
Hughes (A)

Seven bowlers there, with Tony Palladino given a rest as the wicket-taker in four day cricket. Good depth in batting and excellence in the field. I like the balance.

We will find out Graeme Welch's squad tomorrow.

So what are your teams?


Mark said...

Can't argue with that side Peakfan, but I'm sure Welch will go with Slater and Palladino.

Adam said...

I think you are spot on, the only change that may happen is Matt Critchley - the side that played the first T20 yesterday was the same but with Matt in for Chesney and I think that was probably Graeme's first choice side. Hopefully we will perform much better this year in T20 and I think the balance of the side is much better with perhaps the only thing lacking is another established spinner, a Stephen Parry type bowler but Matt bowled some good spells in the 50 over game last year so if he gets the nod it will be interesting to see how he does.

Peakfan said...

I saw that Adam and assumed Ches was temporarily indisposed. However Matt did well as you said and offers all round ability.With Old Trafford often helping spin, he would be a good option. So too would Tom Knight, who ironically was developing into a Parry-type bowler until his action was changed. I really hope he is on his way back and yesterday's wickets will do him good!

Paul. said...

Good luck to the team, hopefully a change of format (if only for 24hrs thanks to the lunacy of the fixture list) will enable players to express themselves and get stuck in.

As you say Peakfan, it's not really been a competition to excite us - Group wins by county over the last 6 years:-
49 - Nottinghamshire
49 - Hampshire
44 - Essex
43 - Lancashire
41 - Warwickshire
39 - Somerset
39 - Surrey
38 - Sussex
38 - Kent
36 - Worcestershire
32 - Yorkshire
31 - Glamorgan
30 - Leicestershire
30 - Durham
28 - Northamptonshire
28 - Gloucstershire
24 - Middlesex
21 - Derbyshire

5 Group wins, which would be our most since 2010, seems a sensible realistic target yet even that wouldn't get us close to the knockout stage.