Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Comment creates research

An interesting comment from John, below the Leicestershire match report, provoked a little research today. In turn, it suggests to me that there will be an enforced change in the Derbyshire side for the games against Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire later this week.
The ECB Return to Play guidelines are quite clear in that after a player has taken a blow to the head:

Regardless of the extent or nature of the concussion there is a need for immediate cognitive and physical rest.
Understanding of concussion is evolving but neurophysiology suggests that the brain does not begin to recover for some days after the initial insult and that there is an increased risk for some time after the initial injury.

It goes on to explain that a return to activity should be gradual and monitored by an appropriate professional, but:

Graded steps of gradual increase in activity must be accompanied by a 24-hour window to check for further symptoms or signs.
To achieve the last two levels as identified in the below table, the player needs a 24-hour window for each level and this therefore means no further return to a full training situation for six days.

On that basis, Matt Critchley, who had to leave the field after a blow to the head on Sunday, will play no cricket this week, at the very least.

It is a shame for the lad, who was doing well in his role at the top of the order, but his well-being is of far greater importance than two games of cricket. I am sure he will be back before too long and will doubtless play a key role in the final phase of T20 matches.

As is always the case in life, one man's misfortune is another's opportunity and the likely beneficiary is Tom Wood. I suggested on several occasions that this competition might be his forte and unless Imran Tahir goes Kolpak and Martin Guptill flies in to replace him in an overseas role before Thursday (hey, a man can dream!), Tom Wood is likely to find opportunity knocking.

I feel sorry for Tom, as well as Charlie Macdonell this year. In most other seasons they would have had first team opportunity before this, having scored a fair share of runs at second team level. They can do no more than that, yet it is otherwise hard to see where a chance will come for either. Ben Slater is another whose chances have been limited since early season, but the batting line-up in this competition is solid and established.

All they can do is keep plugging away and take the chance if and when it is presented. Matt Critchley did that, as did Luis Reece when he was battling for a place. So too has Alex Hughes and more recently Ben Cotton. When the chance came, they were ready, prepared to battle and produced the goods.

No one can ask more.

16 comments:

Jasper said...

First time i had seen Klein bowl and he looked quick. Hope critch will be ok. I wonder if Slater will come in if critch has to miss out but agree wood probably deserves a chance.

David Woolley said...

I think Ben Slater has to admit T20 isn't his format. County championship and RL cup yes.
It's got to be Wood for me. The lad deserves a chance, also, if he gets going, watch out, he gives the ball a fearful whack.
If we end up a bowler short with Critch out, we can always fetch Smit from behind the stumps, with GW replacing him. Although truth be told, we have plenty of bowling options.

daisypod said...

Agreed.wood in for critch..till he gets the all clear..& take it from there.
But lets not tamper with this T20 team.
As ive said before
" if it aint broke..."

Tim, Chesterfield said...

Wood should get the gig. Shame for Critchley but a good opportunity for Wood in two big games.

Good to see a clear forecast for Friday evening too.....

Mark N said...

Wood I agree. Unless this Thakor situation is resolved. Maybe then Reece could open and Thakor at 3.

notoveryet said...

I'm not sure that leaving the field necessarily means that the graded return to play protocol has to follow if closer examination shows there's no reason for concern, but the likelihood must be that Critchley wouldn't have left the field if he wasn't showing some signs of concussion. If so, I think he's going to miss the 4 day match next Sunday as well as the two T20's, and this might be the bigger concern given that he's one of only a handful of batsmen showing any sort of 4 day form. As others have stepped up in the last couple of matches, it might be easier to manage his absence in T20.

I have to say that my vote would be for Slater if Critchley has to be replaced in the T20 matches. I'm baffled by the passion and conviction over Woods, which really isn't supported either by what I've seen of him or his statistics. I've only seen him in his two 4 day matches last season, when he looked utterly at sea and out of his depth, and if he's been better than that in his second team performances this season, his stats don't make a "must play" case. In the championship, he's well behind Hosein and Critchley, in the one day trophy behind Slater and Hosein, and in the T20 behind Slater (with a lower strike rate as well). He seems to have managed one big score in each competition among a general run of mediocre scores, and I'd rather go for Slater's experience and proven class for two such high-pressure games, even allowing for his generally scratchy form for most of the season.

Critchley's absence for the Notts 4 day match raises a whole different set of questions. On recent 4 day form, it's easier to make a case for leaving batsmen out rather than leaving them in, with Slater, Smit and Wilson contributing very little, and Reece, Madsen and Hughes with only a single innings each to justify their places. Unless we're going to say that we can forget sustained poor performances in 4 day matches because of the confidence gained from scoring runs in T20, changes from the side that played Durham are inevitable, and the loss of Critchley is one that we can ill-afford. It's interesting, and perhaps significant, Peakfan, that you comment on how unlucky Wood and Mcdonell have been to miss out on first team cricket, but don't mention in the same context, the far greater misfortune of Hosein, who has been the outstanding second XI batsman of the season so far. He has 2 centuries and 5 half centuries compared to one century and two 50's from Wood, and one and one from Mcdonell; averages 67 in the championship to 37 from Wood and 36 from Mcdonell; and 43 in the one day trophy compared to Wood's 41 and Mcdonell's 30. Only in the T20 is wood's record better, but then not by very much. Despite this, Hosein is just about the only player with first team experience who has not even featured in a competitive squad this season. It looks very much like an "anyone but Hosein" policy, and this seems to be reflected in his exclusion from your thinking in your piece.

Peakfan said...

Critchley may indeed be out for longer, but as you say, we don't know how badly he was shaken. All that seems likely at this stage is that this week is too soon.
As for your assertion on non-inclusion, Wood, Macdonell Hemmings and Cork all have first team experience and none has had opportunity.
The only 'significant' thing about my omission of Hosein is that it has been done to death and has become a distraction this summer. I said I wouldn't keep bringing it up accordingly but since you have...
I saw Harvey at Belper and thought his batting solid, but at this stage unlikely to force him into first team T20 reckoning, when he would likely bat no higher than seven and then be expected to find and clear the ropes.
His keeping I thought solid, but a little sloppy at times in handling, several balls dropped in two matches.
Smit sets the bar high and if he wants to displace him, he needs to as well.
Having said that, if there is a 4 day batting place, he will be in the frame, but, as you say, some have found touch in this competition. They may wish to rest one or two ahead of the final T20 games though and minimise risk of injury, so...
My thoughts, with no greater significance than them being that.

Peakfan said...

I would be very surprised if we see Shiv, Mark.

Opening Bat said...

Bad news regarding Matt critchley just when we looked to have a settled team with everyone contributing. Not sure who should come in to open as not seen enough of wood, but tend to agree Ben Slater better suited to the longer games. I, like notoveryet,do not understand the club policy on Harvey, and disagree with you re continuing the debate here, we cannot just sweep the members concerns under the carpet just because we discussed the issues 2 months ago, whilst we don't want a full discussion every day I think when there is merit, (when a place in the team becomes available), all aspects should be commented on, including the position of the stand out performer in 2nd lX. Looking forward to next 2 games, with all 3 teams not phased by chasing 200, we are well past the half way stage and for the first time in years we still hold our destiny in our own hands, let's hope we still do at 10pm on Friday!

Steve H said...

I might add as well, just as a point of fact that there were quite a few of those Second Xl Championship knocks from HH that finished with an asterisk, and not a dismissal.

I grant you he may well be not the guy to cart the ball into Kingdom come, but he bats time, and if that isn't a shoe in for the rest of the four day games then.....

Nic H said...

We need to move on from HH and stop banging on about him. I am sure his chance will come. Much better to focus on the so far brilliant efforts on the T20.

Peakfan said...

Quite happy to discuss if there is reason to do so Opening Bat. That may come when 4 day cricket returns but the way Smit has kept and batted in the T20 he has things locked down for now

Peakfan said...

Totally agree that on his batting returns, if there is a middle order vacancy he is number one in line to fill it. As I have said before, taking any names out of the equation, I always want my best keeper behind the stumps, not a good bat who can do a job. A bloke who averages 20 and drops nowt is better than one averaging 35 who misses key ones and costs that.
If you can get a bloke who has flypaper fingers and averages 35 you are quids in!

Peakfan said...

Agreed Nic.Which is the main reason I didnt drag his name in again earlier...

notoveryet said...

I think you missed my point, Peakfan. I wasn’t arguing for Hosein in the T20 side. I think he’s a good enough batsman to work out ways of scoring quickly, but his scoring rate in second XI T20 suggests he's not there yet. It looks as if Wood is going to get his chance against Yorkshire anyway, so we'll see how that goes.

I was responding more generally to your comment about Wood and Mcdonell deserving a chance at some stage, rather than specifically in T20. I don’t think even his greatest admirer would think Mcdonell was ready for T20, so I thought you were referring to 4 day cricket, hence my comment about the way Hosein was disregarded.

Just to be clear, I’m not rehearsing the well-worn argument about Hosein v Smit as a wicket-keeper, but the very powerful case for Hosein coming into a badly misfiring batting side as a specialist batsman, given his consistently strong second XI performances building on the outstanding quality he showed at the end of last season. Critchley's possible absence means that there is likely to be a vacancy even if you don't leave out someone on grounds of form, so it's a relevant and current issue about how we strengthen the 4 day side in a game starting in 4 days. Just for the record, Hemmings has played in the first team, Wood and Mcdonell have both been picked in squads, so Cork is the only other player with first team experience who hasn’t been selected for a squad, and my point about Hosein's position wasn't that far off.

Whether Hosein is in the side or not, the issue about Smit isn’t going to go away unless he starts to make consistent contributions with the bat. The Durham game was lost by the forlorn middle-order collapses in both innings, and although Smit was by no means the only culprit, his dismissals were limp, and followed on from a succession of low scores. What we can’t carry on doing is building a side around the hope he’s going to score runs at 5, 6, or 7, and if he plays, he has to play as a specialist wicket-keeper, leaving out a bowler to accommodate him. I’m not dismissing his quality as a wicket-keeper (although I’ve seen him drop catches and balls often enough this season) or as a wise head on the field – twice I’ve seen him go down the wicket to talk to Madsen, against Glamorgan and Leicestershire, and appear to suggest something that led to a wicket next ball, and I’ve no doubt he’s done other things in a less obvious manner. But if you say you want him as your wicket-keeper, the price has to be an extra batsman / all-rounder, and one less specialist bowler.

Peakfan said...

I am afraid that I have way too much going on in my life right now to be looking at the 4-day and T20, notoveryet! Given that our talents are better suited to the latter, let's cross bridges in their turn and enjoy our efforts there before the 4-day returns.

I don't really want to get into pedantics, but there's little between the opportunities of those named and you know as well as I that the opportunities for a reserve wicket-keeper are always limited. If you aren't in, you're out and can't simply move place in the order.

We disagree on Smit and Hosein, that much is clear, while each has respect for the talents of both men. I think Hosein a fine talent, but not yet a first-class wicket-keeper. How could he be the finished article, at 20? Of course you have seen Smit drop an odd one, just as Bob Taylor, Karl Krikken and Luke Sutton dropped them. But Smit is top-drawer most of the time, a comment backed up by both his record and the opinions of his peers.

What we should do for the next four-day game, rewarding his efforts, is give Hosein a chance at three. Ben has been out of sorts, so Billy and Luis to open, with Madsen, Wilson and Hughes at 4-6, Smit at 7.

With three keepers in the side, the slip cordon should be useful, in theory...