The Last two years for England have been a tale of two teams.
One of the test team, a decent side that was ranked no2 in the world falling flat on its face and have since tumbled to 5th.
And an ODI team of pure rubbish, barring that miracle in the CB series. Ok, so not much has changed there.
England have actually won 3 of the 7 test series they have been in during the last two years. However, before 2006 England enjoyed a remarkable run winning 20 of the 40 tests they played and losing only 9
The ODI team were even more abysmal back then, if that is possible, than they are now. Losing 32 of the 60 odd games they played.
Since 2006 Dec, England have won only 8 test matches out of the 20 they’ve played.
The ODI results have not changed much, still losing more games than they have won.
So the question is what has gone wrong with the Test team and what has NOT gone wrong with the ODI team.
Captaincy- both the ODI team and Test team have had 4 captains within these 2 years. Change of leadership invariably has an effect on how the team approaches games. Hopefully the reign of KP will be long. And England will not experiment with the split captaincy idea again – which does more harm than good.
Rubbish at chasing– England average 27 (runs) when chasing in ODIs compared to when they have batted first (31). You compare that to a team like Aus (42 when chasing), India (35), SA (41), its easy to see why England are so inconsistent
Openers – England have never really had a consistent pair of openers in both the test team and ODI team. Which is one of the main reasons whey their openers never contribute much to the games.
In the test team England have tried out Cook, Strauss, Vaughan, Bell.
In the ODI team England have tried out nearly their entire ‘performance squad’ and have still not found the right players.
Wrong selections – Split captaincy is one story, but different selections for the two teams is another matter. It literally pains my eyes to see Ian Bell on a team sheet for the ODI team. Its annoyign because there are players like Dimi, Luke Wright who should be in the ODI team but are not.
Injuries, depression and wides have been the problem for their bowlers.
I stand by my earlier call on England being a better test side than ODI.
That was why I was doing cartwheels when I heard the India tour will go ahead.
The on-again-off-again series could be a chance for England to turn around their fortunes.
No one thinks they wiil. Which is good. At least its less pressure on them.
In a curious way, I have noticed I always end up writing about how shit England are.
Actually its not really that odd cuz England are pretty shit at the moment.
So hopefully England proves us all wrong, at least we will all have something new to write about.