Hampshire Cricket History

I Can’t Explain
August 23, 2016, 5:34 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

(The Who)

I’m not sure whether anyone else can either

Was Tom Alsop dropped or is he indisposed? I guess it’s entirely reasonable to applaud the decision to pick Ervine at number 3. Meanwhile, I’m intrigued by the choice of Smith as captain.

It looks as though most of the games are moving towards results and tonight the weather forecast looks less serious on Thursday – the rain might come overnight

But Alsop? I understand that we have the best batting line-up in the country with loads of bonus points, while Alsop only got 93 last time out, with three half-centuries in his past six innings, but he still seems quite promising to me.

So, dropped or unavailable?

PS In 17 innings this season, three Hampshire bowlers have taken five (+) wickets in an innings: Best at Old Trafford (5-90), McLaren v Somerset (5-104) and Wheal in the last match (6-51). So Carter’s debut in the last match, 4-52 & 1-24, was pretty good too – good enough indeed for him also to be ‘rested’?


14 Comments so far
Leave a comment

How about “rested” ?

Comment by Martin

I too was surprised Alsop wasn’t playing.
Sean Ervine does love a battle though, doesn’t he. I was concerned when their two left arm spinners looked like they would run through us – perhaps they bowled too much on the legside to the lefthanders?

And my first look at McManus – quite impressed.

Comment by Dave Pople

I think McManus is quite a tough one

Comment by Dave Allen

Alsop is a Fantastic player who has a very bright Hampshire and possibly England career ahead of him.

They have obviously gone for experience this game and someone who has huge experience of playing spin in Ervine.
Hats of to him and the selection.

Comment by Jim

As for Smith as captain… It’s a no brainer.

He’s won the division as captain.
He clearly galvanised the team for both wins vs Notts.
And he got a double hundred recently.

P.s I’m a huge McManus fan. He’s tough as nails.

Comment by Jim

I can understand that people are confused about Tom not playing in this match as he has had a pretty good season. The question is, though, if it wasn’t Tom that missed out who should it have been? Sean Ervine was obviously fit & ready to return & as it turns out played really well today. I can’t see that James Vince wouldn’t play so that really only leaves Jimmy who scored 99 last match & Will Smith who scored 200 the previous match. Or, you start he wicket keeping debate again. Adam Wheater, despite how he feels, has been scoring well since being relieved of the gloves & I don’t believe Lewis McManus has done anything wrong. The last couple of matches most of the batsmen have hit a bit of form. It’s just a situation that we haven’t been used to this season……having the luxury of picking a team rather than it picking itself from those that weren’t injured.

As for the captaincy I don’t see the surprise regarding Will as he has been doing it whilst James Vince was away. Maybe he didn’t want to come straight back in with the captaincy as well as wanting/needing to score runs.

Comment by joster69

Great analysis of the situation, Jo.

Ervine said on interview that Tom was unlucky to miss out, and so was clearly dropped. After his dismal performance with England, perhaps Vince should have given way to in-form players, particularly as his score yesterday matched the shape of the ball!

Comment by John West

I have some sympathy with that – but James has great class, and surely we all hope he’ll play himself into form. (Ironically, in the morning I was astonished they’d included Ervine over Alsop. Shows how much I know…)

Comment by Ageas

The team selection in this match is largely a consequence of two divisions, relegation and promotion. There are without doubt some positives to that, although anyone who believes it produces better Test cricketers needs to think about Vince, Compton, Balance, Lyth, Robson, Hales (etc). Until 2000, a young player like Alsop would have been in the side for the whole season. It’s easy with hindsight to say that because Ervine got a hundred (and well done him) he was a good choice but apply the same hindsight and tell me how many Alsop would have scored? I’m supposed to be the man who knows these things but I wonder when a promising young batsman last scored 90-odd in a Championship match and was dropped? In addition, if hindsight allows us to praise the selection of Ervine then it presumably allows us to question the selections of Adams, Smith and Vince – three of the top four who all failed.

Comment by pompeypop

Hear Hear Dave.

Passed caring at the moment…..

Comment by John Cottrell

Pl Inns N/O Runs HS AVG SR. 100. 50

8 14 2 527 123 43.92 51.97 1 3

9 15 0 516 93 34.40 48.00 0 5

I wasn’t looking at Sean’s selection with hindsight as I would pick him anyway (when fit). I’m also a massive fan of Tom Alsop. If you could only pick one of them though & looked at the averages for this season…..which would you choose.

Sean’s figures are first with Tom’s below

Comment by joster69

It’s worth noting that Alsop’s season includes three ‘failures’ deputising for Jimmy at the start after which he was dropped for some games. Since returning at number three he’s averaged 40 – plus some terrific one-day innings. But my point is a far bigger one. I don’t necessarily see it as a straight choice between Sean and Tom – if we’re going on averages (a dodgy strategy) Will Smith is way behind both even with one significant score (the only one), and Liam too is below both. The question for me is about team identity and building sides. Hampshire have a very poor record when it comes to developing their own youngsters and turning them into top players – they seem to have no understanding of the need to build confidence. So you have the early 90s generation of Wood, Cox, Flint, Shine, Turner, the late 90s with Kenway, Prittipaul – and even Jimmy and Tommo took years to get established – then more recently Benham, Terry, Bates, Briggs – I could go on-and-on, there are more. I hope very much that in five years time we are enjoying the achievements of Alsop, Weatherley, McManus, Crane and Wheal on a regular basis but I’m not too confident.

Comment by pompeypop

I think my post re averages wasn’t too clear.

It wasn’t aimed at suggesting Sean was superior to Tom but that both had proved to be valuable at different times this season in a similar amount of innings.

If the Somerset wicket hadn’t been billed as being a spinners paradise then I guess Will Smith would have been more vulnerable to being dropped but without Liam & the relatively unknown quantity of Wainwright he made it in for his bowling.

Comment by joster69

It’s OK Jo – no problem. I think we will go down this year because over two years we’ve been one of the poorest Div One sides. The management sees the answer as packing the team with old boys – brought in from anywhere, just as they did with Imran Tahir (instead of Danny) to clinch promotion in 2014. He did hardly anything.

My answer is that wherever we have a young player in form and of proven ability he should take precedence because he’s going to be the one to get us back up. I doubt whether Will, or Andy Carter or Wainwright or Gareth Andrew or Tino or … will do that. We haven’t won the Championship for over 40 years and we’ve hardly ever come close so they must be getting something wrong!

Comment by pompeypop

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