Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Durham v Derbyshire day 2

Durham 480-9 declared (Collingwood 177, Viljoen 5-130)

Derbyshire 164

Derbyshire trail by 316 runs

There's something about Henry Longfellow's poem 'There Was a Little Girl' that reminds me of Derbyshire.

It contains the lines 'when she was good, she was very, very good and when she was bad, she was horrid'. There, in two lines, you have our cricket team neatly encapsulated. It is hard to understand that a team that can play with the intensity of some of our best T20 displays this summer can then produce an effort like this, one of worrying ineptitude.

Alex Hughes said last night that we had bowled badly and that it wasn't a '480' wicket. That is probably fair comment for the ground, but nor, I suspect, is it quite the minefield that our batting made it look yesterday. Let's not forget that we chose to bowl first.

Hughes and Ben Slater excepted, the rest made a pretty poor fist of things, granted against a decent seam attack on their own turf. It was a day that made it hard to think otherwise than we are hopeless at four-day cricket. Finding positives from the first two days would challenge anyone, with the only redeeming features the perennial grit of Hughes and the pace of Viljoen. Yet even the latter was dreadfully expensive and the feeling of the average supporter must be that of an end of season game, some distance before the year's final delivery.

There is a very real danger that we will pick up the wooden spoon this summer with such displays, awful when one considers two sides in the division started with negative points.

I don't fault the rationale behind the players running the show on the field, but in doing so they are wholly responsible for poor performance, such as this. There is no coach to blame, only themselves and there is a need for greater resolve and commitment being shown. Much as they deserve credit when it goes well, they have to handle the criticism when it doesn't.

There is a talented group of players at the club, but this match has been dreadful.


Anonymous said...

I disagree with this no coach thing. Look at our T20 performances; we made the QF and made it out of a very tough group in second place. Meanwhile, the coach-less 4-day side (made up of many of the same players) are putting in these limp, rudderless displays.

The 4-day team needs direction. Drastically. Like you say, there are talented players and the T20 has shown us that. John Wright got the best of the group; it shows us what Derbyshire, our team, could do with the right leadership.

My message to Kim Barnett would be simple; get a head coach in. I'd love John Wright to do a full season with us, but Chris Adams (currently interim coach of the Dutch I believe) would surely be a fantastic choice too?

Chris in Shropshire.

Paul Fitzpatrick said...

I agree with Chris
Steve Stubbings was with the group as was Tony Palladino BUT I think it needs a figurehead who can steer the group
Not sure if Kim B was there
It is too much for Billy G to have full autonomy when he is still learning how to be a captain and maintain his 1000 runs a season performance levels .

David Woolley said...

At the time of writing PF, Derbyshire are 73-0 in their second innings. Other games throughout the Country are being delayed by the weather. Why oh why did we not have a toss and try to bat first in perfect conditions on Monday??? We would at least have had the chance of Tahir bowling in the last innings. Or was it because we were afraid to send our batsmen out first???
I'm not sure that Billy trusts some of the batsmen around him. One thing I do know, is that I, and many others remain totally unconvinced at our counties ability to play the four day game. The T20 is now finished, our minor success in that competition needs to be put to bed, and let's look to have a strong finish in the CC div2.
If we avoid the wooden spoon merely because of another counties points deduction, then this group of players should hang their heads in shame.
Time for some 'backbone' Derbyshire.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with your comments contrasting the squalid displays in much of the 4 days season with the intensity of the 20:20 season. My question concerns whether Billy G is cutting it as captain? He doesn't seem capable of motivating the team. I would love the captaincy to stay with a home grown player grounded with Derbyshire. Would Alex Hughes be an alternative? As you say he always shows commitment and passion, and now seems more certain of his place in the starting 11. I do think he would need off field support and we should be looking around for options. Chris Adams would be fantastic. Even Dominic Cork as an occasional consultant

David B - exiled in Lancashire