Thursday, 7 June 2018

Nottinghamshire v Derbyshire RLODC

Derbyshire 110 (Madsen 37, Critchley 33)

Nottinghamshire 115-2 in 11.5 overs (Wessels 63)

Nottinghamshire won by eight wickets

And when it came, the battle royal turned into a damp squib.

We never turned up today.

Aside from this being a very good Nottinghamshire side, we played an innings of poor shot selection, hesitant running and sheer carelessness to be rolled over for 110.

Only when Wayne Madsen and Matt Critchley put on a fifty partnership for the fourth wicket did we look as if we would mount a respectable total, but before and after them the batting had the consistency of papier mache.

Even those two gave their wickets away in a fashion that belied the situation and the way in which Derbyshire were dispatched made the onlooker wonder if this was the same side that had played so well earlier in the competition. Our hosts bowled well, but truth be told we made Matt Carter look like Muralitharan today.

It wasn't a great wicket, with spin and movement for all bowlers, but you could argue it was the same for both sides and the home side wasted no time in winning the game inside twelve overs. It was helped by the usual brutal assault by Wessels, who must circle the dates of matches against us for when his average increases. Both Qadri and Critchley were put to the sword and the whole sorry affair came to a close in time for the spectators to get caught in the peak hour traffic on the way home.

I hope that this is as bad as it gets this season, because it was truly awful, painful to watch.

The match was all over inside the time it usually takes for one innings in this competition.

Which tells its own sorry story.


  1. Pure surrender which isn't on is it?. Big problems with this squad with the batting not being addressed in the winter, but plenty of messing with the seam bowling. Imbalanced squad doesn't even come in to it.

  2. Quirk of the fixtures that we did well early in I fear. Beat the bad lose to the good. We are performing about par

  3. That shambles has really whet the appetite for 20/20 cricket

    One injury and the team falls apart

    Have ever has a weaker 4,5,6, 7 and then we reach the tail, OMG

  4. I would like to think Kim had the whole squad report to County Ground tomorrow morning at crack of dawn to confirm this embarrassment to the Club Membership - imagine the backlash from Sky had they decided to televise this debacle !

  5. You can accept the context - a very poor pitch which might have become dangerous if the match had run its course, the absence of Reece, the general improvement etc, but this was shameful. It was something that many people have seen coming as the group stage progressed, and the over-reliance on Godleman and Slater became more and more glaring.

    Both Slater and Godleman are exempt from criticism as they got decent balls, and Viljoen for doing what he does in a desperate situation (but also showing why promoting him in the order as was suggested by many after the Lancs match will usually be doomed to failure) but otherwise this was embarrassingly incompetent by all the other batsmen. It was incomprehensible why at 3 down, Madsen and Critchley didn't simply agree to bat carefully for 25 overs, look to get to 100 and give themselves a chance to get up to a score of 180-200 that would have been competitive.

    Critchley played well and looked like the only batsman who really got to grips with the pitch until he nibbled aimlessly outside his off stump as he has done several times recently. Madsen was frantic and jittery throughout, and is a shadow of the batsman who was so dominant up to a couple of years ago. Perhaps the focus on one-day cricket has so scrambled his concentration and his technique that he can no longer bat time, or perhaps the light is dimming for him, and his poor form in the championship last year presaged the fading of his ability to anchor one day innings as well. Derbyshire have to own up to the fact that he can't be relied on as we've become used to.

    There are even bigger questions about Wilson, Hughes and Smit. As I suggested earlier in the week, none have contributed with the bat aside from brief cameos at the end of innings. Wilson has looked dreadful all season, and following on from a poor winter with Ireland and a mediocre first year with us, you wonder whether he has reached the end of the road. I've never been convinced that Hughes is good enough to bat above 7, and he is getting worse by the innings, and looked and performed like a walking wicket today. Smit has failed repeatedly and comprehensively as a batsman so often at this level that no amount of awe-struck wonder at his wicket-keeping can disguise the fact that he's not good enough.

    I said earlier in the week that we can't go into the T20 with this horribly under-achieving middle order. I've no doubt that Hughes, Wilson and Smit bring enthusiasm, energy, experience and nous to the team but we cannot afford to carry them around simply for being good guys. Hosein is a given for me, as he has shown that he can work the ball around as effectively as Smit, and his greater range of shots gives him more scoring opportunities. Smit's keeping has been nowhere the standard of last year as shown by a missed stumping against Lancs, and some poor byes given away against Yorks. I suggested an overseas batsman was essential a couple of days ago, and this display reinforces that point. I still don't know enough about Brodrick to know whether he might do better than Hughes, but if Hughes plays, he has to bat at 7, as his presence so often turns the loss of a couple of quick wickets into a full-scale collapse.

    There's nothing new in this, so it isn't an over-reaction to one shockingly inept performance that can be counted as a bad day at the office, or a hiccup in a generally much improved performance. If Godleman, Slater and Reece hadn't been in such glittering form, this campaign could have been a catastrophe, and until we address the middle order problems, so can the T20 and remainder of the championship. We can't do anything about the fact that we'll be the laughing stock of the counties for the next few days, but we must have action to make sure it doesn't happen again and again.

  6. And irony of irony. At 7.30 it began to rain in Nottingham, so if we'd batted 50 overs, we might have been eliminated on DLS anyway with Notts only batting 20 overs anyway!

  7. Shambolic. A score of 220 plus today on that wicket would have been challenging and I'm sure they knew it and they bat like that.
    Followed them for over 40 years and trust me I've witnessed some drubbings but that's right up there with the best /worst of them. Embarrassed being there today.

  8. Will peak fan continue his effusive, and frankly bafflingly misplaced praise of smit, when in reality he has stunted the progress of a fantastic home prospect for nearly 2 years now?

    Yes i get being positive peakfan but your constant praise of smit is i fear a blindspot on your otherwise usually astute part.

    Yes he scores runs in the 2's, is a decent county keeper, not a patch on read, piper or foster though, and i'm sure is n excellent club man, but he's not good enough when you have such a talent as HH stuck in the 2's stagnating. Peakfan says HH needs to score runs in the 2's to force his way in, well 2nd team cricket, as so ably illustrated by Mr Smit, is not a reliable barometer. HH's talent may well blossom in the pressure cooker of 1st xi. We know it has before. We dont anymore as hes only been given the odd game here and there. Had he been shown the same faith as smit bafflingly has, then we could have another England lion on our hands.


    1. Some good comments here and cannot fault the passion and frustration that I share.

      But how was this Smit's fault Delboy? I think Hosein will and should get a chance at Durham in the absence of Reece and Wilson and I hope he takes it.

      I agree Wilson is in poor form and his batting will not be missed. I agree Smit needs to score runs.

      I think Hosein is potentially a good and organised first class batsman, but dont think him an especially good keeper. Others disagree, and that is their prerogative, but if HH becomes a regular county cricketer it will be as a batsman who can keep wicket if required, rather than a wicket keeper batsman. That's my opinion.

      But I don't get how eleven players doing badly today translates as 'Smit's fault'

  9. The worst £17 I've spent in my life. Ridiculed & humiliated by the home fans. Never felt so embarrassed in my life

  10. We've a poor squad let's just face facts. Dreading the remainder of this season, and we've barely started it. At this moment in time Slater, Godleman and Olivier are the only shoe ins, in this team, the rest have to stand up and be counted asap.

  11. Tim, Chesterfield7 June 2018 at 21:52

    I hope the player come on here and read these comments.

    I wasn't there and thank goodness as I'd contemplated it.

  12. Results wise this has been an improved campaign. Now what happened today is what we feared. What happens when the openers who have been monumental and Madsen don't score big between them. The middle order has been problematic for decades and I doubt we have the budget to address this. The top 3 over the years have sometimes papered over the cracks. We will never carry strength in depth. Look at the operations manager and teenage academy player. If possible strengthening the middle order is a must or there will be no significant improvement. Let's face reality rather than some perverted perspective

    1. Good post. Cant deny that and any more injuries will leave us horridly exposed

    2. Haha nice congruence to my use of adjective peaky

  13. To Cestrefeldian

    Our uneptatude is probably why they didn't cover us, after all it was an obvious choice given the league position

    Following season after season of DCCC after a season after season of CFC can seriously damage your well-being

  14. Tim, Chesterfield7 June 2018 at 23:11

    And on the same day a middle order batsman who we trialled, and presumably decided not to engage, scored an unbeaten 50 for the puddings to see them home to win.

    Surely Staffordshire, Cheshire or some other nearby Minor County side has a decent young top order batsman we could employ.

    1. Tattershall is ostensibly a keeper so imagine the comments if we signed another one! You could argue we dont need 4 and one decent knock shouldn't have us lamenting not signing him. His brief innings against us at Derby wasn't very impressive...

  15. In defence of Delboy (though I'm sure he could do it himself) he didn't say that the defeat was all Smit's fault, and was simply commenting on the specific issue of Smit among a whole raft of failing middle order batsmen. On a day that 5 front line batsmen failed to reach double figures, and two that did threw their wickets away with needless or reckless shots, it would be absurd to single out Smit.

    Delboy concisely and fairly made the point that Smit isn't scoring the runs that we need from a number 7, and more importantly, shows no signs of doing so. I recall you asserting very confidently in the winter that it wasn't fair to judge him on one poor season when he came into the club late and with no pre-season after injury and we'd see his full flowering this year, but it's self-evident now that it hasn't happened.

    It's reasonable to make a case for Smit as a specialist wicket-keeper and wise counsel to the captain, but it's unarguable that he is not delivering as a batsman. If you accept the case, as you obviously do, it has to be as a number 9 at the expense of a bowler.

  16. On the positive side Doug, nobody is going to accuse you of being a glory hunter.


  17. As someone who knows the game better than most, notoveryet, your comment on Smit ignores the fact that he has had 2 first class innings, in which he made 45 not out and 34, an innings that helped save a game.

    Also that his late assaults against Warwickshire and Leicestershire certainly won the latter game and took our score in the former higher than it looked like being at one point. He also got 22 from 13 balls against Worcestershire.

    Against Durham he faced one ball and was not out, against Yorkshire he came in with two overs left, against Lancashire he failed and yesterday was one of only three in double figures. Failed like the rest of them, but come on, how many runs do you expect him to make batting that late?

    As for Madsen's 'decline' he averages 52 this summer in four-day cricket. I only wish we had another four who could decline similarly alongside him...

  18. The comments about madsen and smit are absurd. To say Madsen is declining is an insult to the guy and smit has shown improvement this year with the bat, and doesn't seem as reliant on his favoured square of the wicket shots particularly the sweep.
    However as i have said previously in my opinion HH should play in the 4 day games.

  19. Very poor performance. Complete waste of time watching the stream. Sounds like Reece is out for the best part of the season maybe back in September right at the end. Bad news that. This is what he said on commentary anyway. Disgusted at some of the shots. Middle order absolutey walking wickets. Hughes shot a ball after dancing down the wicket and lucky not to be bowled or stumped summed it up. Pure panic. Anyway, forward we go.


  20. Blaming any one batsman on any given day is pointless, but as usual this season only 2 out of the top six tend to contribute a decent score in any innings first class or white ball.

    In good teams 3 or 4 make a worthwhile contribution.

  21. I'll say it again that I'm not blaming one batsman, but the collective failure of the middle order from Madsen down to make significant contributions in more than one match of the one day cup. Yes, Madsen played well at Edgbaston, and Hughes, Wilson and Smit in one match at Derby, but otherwise their contributions were poor, declined as the competition progressed, and culminated in the collective brain-fade at Trent Bridge. It wasn't just individual performances either, as the order never felt right.

    Smit stands out from the others only because he has still to show that he can deliver at this level, which the others have, and because there is an obvious, relatively experienced, alternative. Oddly, my disappointment with his one day performances was amplified by the fact that he had looked better than last year in the championship match, though I wasn't impressed by his second innings dismissal which opened up the tail when it looked as if the game was being made safe.

    I cede the point to an extent on Wayne Madsen's 4 day batting so far. His century against Warwicks was a masterclass that harked back to his best form, but otherwise has looked hectic and hurried. He can still play murderously on his day, but the air of invulnerability and invincibility isn't there. Where the reverse sweep was once a rare but delectable morsel, it's now a routine cause of trepidation, as its early appearance usually precedes a loose, jittery innings. Perhaps you don't like the word "decline" but it's a falling away from the standards that have made him a rock in Derbyshire's batting for most of a decade, at a time when we need the rock more than the dancing swordsman.


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