Saturday, 14 January 2017

Weekend thoughts

It has been a quiet week on the Derbyshire cricket front.

The players are now back in the nets and, from the club footage, looking good. Shiv Thakor seemed to be in good nick with the bat, while Tom Taylor and Harvey Hosein both took cracking catches in practice.

I have to say that I disagreed with the vote (such as it matters) on the club Twitter feed, as to the merit of the respective catches. I took a few high and climbing ones, as well as a few low and dropping ones over the years - and missed a few too - and the latter were more difficult. Notwithstanding that one man has gloves and the other doesn't, the ones low and dropping need you to intercept gravity and pull the ball up before keeping your balance or preventing the ball hitting the deck. The other is you are either tall enough to get a hand on it, or you're not. If you're not, the biggest issue is not dislocating a top finger joint if you only 'just' get there.

At the end of it all, what does it matter, but that's my personal viewpoint...

Hardus Viljoen had a day to forget yesterday for the Lions, with figures of eleven overs for 67 and no wickets. Sometimes that happens to a fast bowler, the rudder goes, the rhythm isn't there and the figures suffer. I've seen it happen to most genuine quicks over the past forty years, whether Steyn, Akram, Waqar, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Morne Morkel and many more. Mark Footitt is still prone to that sort of spell, but you gain compensation in the days when everything clicks and the wickets tumble.

I maintain that if Viljoen and our leggies stay fit we will do much better this summer, but expect days with both where the rhythm isn't right and the ball just doesn't come out as intended. It just goes with the territory and both fast and leg spin bowling are very difficult arts.

The Big Bash goes on in Australia and there has been some great cricket played. Stuart Broad was a 'hero' for seven off three balls as his Hobart Hurricanes chased 220-odd to win, though personally I thought his team mate Ben McDermott more worthy of that status with 114 from 52 balls. Broad may have got them over the line, but they wouldn't have got close, bar for a special innings by a talented young player.

That's pretty much it for today. I will be back at the start of next week, all being well.

Enjoy your weekend!

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