Tag Archives: Matt Prior

Fourth Test Post-Mortem

Mental Disintegration isn’t the kind of place where you find folk being kicked while they’re down.  Given the circumstances however, I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to indulge in the art for a bit.

For the first time in my existence on this spinning stone, England have retained the Ashes on tour Down Under.  I’ve seen a fair share of false dawns in international cricket, hopefully this achievement isn’t going to be one of them.  There’s still a Test to play in Sydney and it would be quite disappointing if it became apparent that certain feet had been taken off of the momentum gas pedal.

Highlights

  • Bundling Australia out for 98 is fairly nice.
  • Jonathan Trott and Matt Prior keeping their heads in the middle of a miniature crisis following a few quick wickets, pretty much making the difference between a good innings total and a match winning one.
  • Peter Siddle showing that someone in Australia is still putting up a fight, both with bat and ball.
  • Everyone on Twitter being up in arms about Aleem Dar checking to see if Mitchell Johnson had over-stepped having already given Prior out.  This has happened before, folks.

Lowlights

  • Ryan Harris pulling up with a stress fracture in his tibia.  When you’ve putting in the hard yards despite everything going to pieces around you, the last thing you want is your body going to pieces too.
  • Ricky Ponting spending an eternity remonstrating with Aleem Dar after Kevin Pietersen wasn’t given out after a referral.  Given how the replays showed no sign off an edge on Pietersen’s bat, it was just toe-curlingly cringeworthy.  His punishment was fairly lenient given that he’s the captain and all.

England

  • We’ve entered an interesting moment in time where England have a selection of seam bowlers who probably wouldn’t look out of place in the Test attack.  Whilst they might not necessarily deliver spells as memorably devastating as Harmison & co. used to, they’re certainly proving to be somewhat effective when given the opportunity.
  • I had my doubts about Tim Bresnan and he went and dispelled them, so hats off to the burly Yorkshireman.  Him and Tremlett went from being back ups at the start of the tour to looking like our best bowlers.
  • Jonathan Trott, oh Jonathan Trott.  He’s now played a big part in Strauss getting his hands on the urn on two occasions and averages over 100 against the Oz.  He also had a nation wincing when he managed to edge a delivery onto his knee, ouch!

Australia

  • Whereas the Australian side of ten years ago was hewn from granite by killer robots, this one seems to be random bits of plywood and MDF glued together by blind puppeteers.
  • That point alone says it all about their current situation, to be honest.

So much for kicking them while they’re down, perhaps I’m just more polite than I thought.  Suppose everyone else is doing it on my behalf.


England’s Ashes Squad – Wicket Keepers

Matt Prior’s pretty much established himself as England’s premier glove man, which is some recovery after that horror show performance against Sri Lanka a few years ago.  Such is his reversal, and Tim Ambrose’s downward spiral in form, you’d think Prior has done some sort of deal with a sinister character involving his soul or something.

Interestingly, his Wikipedia article is the second search result from ‘Poor Wicket Keeping’ (Kamran Akmal is and probably will always remain a pair of teflon palmed gloves ahead), despite clear signs of improvements in that area over the last 18 months.  His batting remains a rather handy trait to possess.

The selectors have also continued to resist calls from various parts to include James Foster as back up keeper, instead choosing to take Steven Davies to come along for the ride and to play in a warm up match or two (unless Prior breaks a finger), and rightly so.  What better way to keep all forms of momentum going than to have a keeper who is very similar to your first choice – one who is good with the bat and may occasionally fumble a few takes.  But he bats left-handed, oh good lord.


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