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Sunday, 21 March 2010

Broadly Speaking......

...or One Spell does not a Cricketing Career make..

Following the cricket from Bangladesh recently, I have started to get a little tired of some of Stuart Broad's antics and mannerisms. Firstly when he got a wicket in the first test, to not appeal to the umpire, (even though it was stone dead plumb) was in itself discourteous but is also characteristic of how Broad generally carries himself at present. I just don't think that the level of arrogance and petulance at times is worthy of his level of performance.

Although the pitches are admittedly not conducive to fast bowling, Broad is averaging 51 runs per Bangladeshi wicket so far in this series. Bresnan, the inexperienced test cricketer is averaging 32 and Finn 52. Broad has been smirking and staring at the batsmen as if it is all coming a bit too easy for England. The current parlous state in which England find themselves begs to differ.

Personally, I don't feel he has any reason to feel superior to any of the Bangladeshi batsmen, who have taken so far 400+ runs off the attack of which he is the most senior bowler. In this game the pitch has been unhelpful but he has been very inconsistent in line and length. He also seems to be bowling bouncers, attempted yorkers and slower balls in every over. And these are interspersed with long hops outside off and leg-stump half volleys which have been summarily despatched. And all followed with a look from Broad as if its some sort of fluke.

I'd like nothing more than for Broad to convert his obvious promise with the ball into consistent performances for England. Were it not for the fact that for some reason the England management think they have unearthed a Test Match no.7 then I think he would have spent a few less games in the side, like Jimmy Anderson in his early career. However, I think in order to become a consistent performer for England, Broad will need to stop thinking that he is the finished article thanks to one good spell of bowling in the Ashes last summer.

Maybe the tap he is getting from the Bangladeshi batsmen will help Broad come to his senses and realise that Glenn McGrath got most of his wickets caught behind or at slip, by bowling at the "fourth stump" at around 80-82mph and not giving the batsmen anything to hit. When Broad averages 21 instead of 35 and has an economy rate of below 3 runs an over I think he can probably start to justify the odd chirp here and there.

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