NZ v England T20 Series Goes To Decider

An account of England’s victory over New Zealand in the 4th T20I, some thoughts about General Election 2019 and lots of photographs.

INTRODUCTION

As well as some thoughts on the T20 series in New Zealand I am going to mention the General Election, and my constituency in particular. As usual I have plenty of photographs to share.

ENGLAND ROAR BACK INTO T20 SERIES

In the third match of this five match series England had seemingly been cruising to victory before a collapse in which they lost five wickets for just 10 runs handed the game and with it a 2-1 series lead to New Zealand. Thus in game four in Napier England needed a win to keep the series alive.

England batted first and made a slow start, with only 18 coming from the first four overs. Even when Eoin Morgan joined Dawid Malan in the eighth over the score was not looking that impressive. However Malan and Morgan shared a vicious partnership, Malan reaching a 48 ball century will Morgan outdid him for run rate by monstering 91 off just 40 balls. In among the carnage Ish Sodhi got slapped for 28 in the 17th over of the innings (and was lucky it was not even worse – 26 had come off the first five balls. England finished with their highest ever T20I score of 241-3. New Zealand got away to a flying start in response and were briefly threatening to chase down this imposing total, but Matt Parkinson showed New Zealand just what a real legspinner could do in the conditions. In spite of two chances not going to hand he bagged four wickets in the spell that consigned the Kiwis to defeat. England claimed the final wicket off the penultimate ball of the 17th over with the total at 165, giving them victory by a massive (in this format) 76 runs. I now make England favourites to win the decider – it will not be easy for NZ to recover from this blasting. I suspect that Yorkshire will not be seeing all that much of their new signing Dawid Malan next year as after this he has to be considered an essential part of England’s white ball plans. Parkinson, the young legspinner, has a huge future in (for my money) all formats, and although it would be hard on Leach to be dropped I would consider (especially if he takes more wickets in the final match of this series) picking him as first spinner for the test matches that conclude this tour, or maybe even, unlikely as a such a suggestion seems for a series in New Zealand, going with both specialist spinners. Full scorecard of the game here.

GENERAL ELECTION THOUGHTS

The Tories are lurching from one gaffe to another in this election campaign. Whether it is an empty chair subbing for James Cleverly (the chair certainly fared better than Mr Cleverly would have done), Johnson’s launch taking place in a near empty room or a succession of candidates standing down for various reasons they have been having a shocker. The long standing Tory MP for Northwest Norfolk, Sir Henry Bellingham, is one of those not standing for re-election. I think this is good news for Jo Rust, the Labour candidate, for two reasons. Firstly Sir Henry undoubtedly garnered some votes that were for him personally and not for his party as such. Secondly, and more important, the Brexit Party, who may well have stood aside for Sir Henry will now undoubtedly contest the seat, further cutting into the Tory vote. Overarching these two factors is that rather than being a seat with a Tory incumbent it is now a vacant seat. If you are in Northwest Norfolk and want a non-Tory MP voting for Jo Rust on December 12th is your chance, and it is a better one than in some considerable time. A couple of links to end this section, both from Tax Research UK:

  1. Confirmation that this is The Climate Election in the form of this piece titled “People want zero carbon by 2030. It’s what the Green New Deal requires.
  2. The Tax Research UK take on the succession of Tory Disasters.

PHOTOGRAPHS

My usual sign off…

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Two adult swans escorting three rather large juveniles (the grey plumage confirms that they are still technically juveniles).

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A spider web in a section of town wall.

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This spider web, enhanced by the effect if rain, is in my back garden – the handle of the peg basket is in shot to give it scale,

How My Latest Predictions Fared

Accounts of the final outcomes of yesterday’s Royal London Cup matches, including details of how my latest set of predictions worked out. Also features a couple of twitter finds and some of my photographs.

INTRODUCTION

At the halfway stage of yesterday’s Royal London Cup fixtures, in accordance with what is now my custom I ventured a set of predictions as to the outcomes. Now I reveal how they fared.

THE OUTCOMES MATCH BY MATCH

Northamptonshire v WarwickshireNorthamptonshire 358-6, Warwickshire 164, Northamptonshire won by 194 runs.
I called this as a Northamptonshire win and was proven correct. The sheer size of the win was a bit of a surprise. Ed Pollock and Alex Thomson joint top-scored for Warwickshire with 36 a piece, while Blessing Muzurabani, Ben Sanderson and Jason Holder each picked uo three wickets for Northamptonshire.

Glamorgan v SomersetSomerset 261-9, Glamorgan 259, Somerset won by 2 runs.
For the second time in a row Craig Overton followed useful late runs (crucial in this case) with early wickets. When Glamorgan were 41-6 it seemed to be all over, but then David Lloyd (84) and Graham Wagg (62) put on 152 to drag their side back into it. At 202-9 Somerset again looked like winners, but then Glamorgan rallied through their last pair, Lucas Carey and Dutchman Timm Van Der Gugten, who looked to have snatched the game for their side until Carey holed out for 39 to end things with Glamorgan two runs adrift. I had called this as a Somerset win, and I was just proven right. It was an absolute classic match, and credit to Glamorgan for their incredible fight back from 41-6, from where a margin of 200 looked likelier than the eventual two! Scottish medium pacer Josh Davey had a List A best 4-36, Overton (surely player of the match) had 3-51 to go with his priceless 41 not out and Dutchman Roelof Van Der Merwe had 2-36 from 5.1 overs, snaring the final wicket.

Kent v Sussex Kent 298, Sussex 302-3 (40 overs) – Sussex won by seven wickets with 10 overs to spare.
I got this one wrong – I had called it as a Kent win. The match was won for Sussex by two men, north Wales born Philip Salt (137 not out off 106 balls, he now has 422 list A runs at 42.20 and a strike rate of 108.20 in that form of the game – clearly one to watch for the future, as he is only just 22) and Hastings born Harry Finch (89 off 68 balls, he now has 1,056 list A runs at 42.24 and a strike rate of 78.57 in that form, and is 24 years old). For Kent Matt Milnes took two wickets but also got carted – 73 off nine overs, while wily old Darren Stevens had 1-34 from eight overs.

Leciestershire v Worcestershire Leicestershire 377-4 from 50 overs, Worcestershire 339 from 46.2 overs, Leicestershire won by 38 runs.
Worcetsreshire fought gamely in the face of a huge total but never managed at any stage to get on terms with the task. 131 from Ross Whiteley was the main contribution, and he was supported by Brett D’Oliveira (grandson of Basil, son of Damian, 57) and Ed Barnard (61). Dieter Klein took 4-72 and Claude Ackerman 3-55 to follow his mighty innings. A correct prediction from me.

Gloucestershire v Middlesex Gloucestershire 283-7, Middlesex 287-4 from 42.2 overs, Middlesex won by six wickets with 7.4 overs to spare.
I called this one incorrectly, backing Gloucestershire to defend. When the Middlesex score was 103-4 this one was looking fairly good for me, but Steve Eskinazi (107 not out) and Nick Gubbins (98 not out) saw their side to what was in the end a very comfortable victory. Australian seamer Daniel Worrall took 2-30 from six overs, but no one else did anything of significance with the ball.  

Yorkshire v LancashireLancashire 311-6, Yorkshire 310 all out (50 overs exactly) Lancashire won by one run.
Having had a tie in their last game, Yorkshire lost this one by a single run, suffering two run outs at the end to settle it. Tom Kohler-Cadmore scored 97 off 113 balls, Gary Ballance 72 off 64, and Johnny Tattersall 49 off 29 to bring his side very close to the line before being run out. Saqib Mahmood took 3-76 and bowled the crucial final over, legspinner Matt Parkinson took 2-47 from his 10 (a key performance in so close and high scoring a match) and there was a wicket a piece for Graham Onions, Glen Maxwell and Liam Hurt (so new on the scene that his profile is very sketchy – his date of birth is not recorded, not what hand he bats with, nor what style of bowler he is, and given that he too was economical for such a high scooring game – 42 runs off eight overs, this could be the first sighting of future star). I had called this one as Yorkshire win, and a single run saved my bacon and extended my record of calling more correctly than wrongly to a third round of this competition.

Derbyshire v NottinghamshireDerbyshire 297-8, Nottinghamshire 299-4 (45.1 overs) Nottinghamshire won by six wickets with 4.5 overs to spare.
I had expected Derbyshire to defend their 297-8, but in the end Nottinghamshire were comfortable winners. Ben Slater made 83 off 100 balls, and then from 173-4 Tom Moores hit 52 not out off 46 balls and skipper Steven Mullaney 68 not out off 47 balls to carry Nottinghamshire to victory. Alfie Gleadall, whose date of birth like that of Liam Hurt is shown as ‘unknown’, but who I can reveal to be left handed batter and right-arm medium fast bowler took 3-43 from seven overs, and no other Derbyshire bowler deserves to have their figures quoted.

Thus I was right with four of my predictions and wrong with three, making my overall tally thus far 12 right and seven wrong, a success rate of 63.16% (63.15789 to five decimal places, they key being that the third decimal is a 7, i..e 5 or greater, so we round up), and I have had more right than wrong on all three occasions I have done this so far, though this time  that was only just the case.

LINKS AND PICTURES

We start with a basic primer on climate science from Parents for Future SE:
CSB

My second offering comes from Election Maps UK and shows what our House of Commons would look like under PR:

PRH

I have two elections coming up, a local council election in which the four candidates are two Labour and two Tory, meaning that I will vote Labour. I do not yet know who all the candidates in the European election on May 22 are, but if there is a Green to vote for in that I will vote for them. In a general election under our current deeply flawed system, given the nature of my constituency I would have to vote Labour, as only Labour have anything approaching the support base needed to unseat the sitting Tory MP – whereas under PR I would be voting Green.

Now we have my regular sign off…

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The Royal London Cup and England’s World Cup Squad

My thoughts on the early stages of the Royal London Cup and England’s world cup 2019 squad.

INTRODUCTION

The day games in today’s first set of Royal London Cup Fixtures are now at the half way stage (Hampshire v Kent is a day/night game, and did not start until 1PM), and I shall be looking at what has happened thus far and venturing predictions as to the outcomes. Also England released their world cup 2019 squad today and I shall be looking at that. We being with…

THE ROYAL LONDON CUP

This is a 50 overs a side tournament, and is being played over the next month. Today sees the opening fixtures of the tournament and the situations, with all matches bar one at the innings break are:

Durham v Northamptonshire Durham 342-5 from 50 overs
A good score for Durham, with Bancroft making 151 not out and Michael Richardson 102. The Northanmptonshire bowlers gave away almost two and half overs worth of extra deliveries. Bizarrely Luke Procter, the most economical Northamptonshire bowler with 1-33 from 7 overs did not get to bowl his full allocation. Although I would prefer to Durham lose every game at present due to their choice of captain this is a total that should be defensible – it will require a huge effort for Northamptonshire to get them, so my predicted result here is victory for Durham.

Yorkshire v LeicestershireYorkshire 379-7 from 50 overs
A big score for Yorkshire. Gary Ballance top scored with 156 off 133 balls, youngster Harry Brook made 103 off 105, wicketkeeper Jonny Tattersall made 58 off 29 to boost the total at the end. The Ballance/ Brook efforts are notable because Yorkshire had lost three early wickets when they came together. Tom Taylor took 3-57 (the first three to fall) from his 10 overs, a notable achievement in such a score. Yorkshire really should be able to defend this total, so my prediction is victory for them.

Lancashire v WorcestershireWorcestershire 367 all out from 49.1 overs
A big total from Worcestershire. I do not set as much store by using all of the 50 overs as some, so I am not that bothered by Worcs being all out before the end of their allocation. Hamish Rutherford and Daryl Mitchell made centuries for Worcestershire and keeper/batter Ricky Wessels a rapid 72 (he does not share his father Kepler’s approach to batting). Matt Parkinson, a 22 year old legspinner, took 5-51 for Lancashire, a very fine achievement particularly in view of the size of the Worcs total. Worcestershire should win this with that total on the board and that is my prediction.

Gloucestershire v Surrey Gloucestershire 235 all out off 47.1 overs
A poor looking total for Gloucestershire in the match between the county of my birth and the one where I lived for most of formative years. Chris Dent made 75 and wicketkeeper Gareth Roderick 74, but no one else did anything significant. Rikki Clarke took 4-43 and Tom Curran celebrated his world cup call-up with 3-29 from 9 overs. Frankly Surrey should knock these off no bother at all, and such is my predicted result.

Glamorgan v Essex Essex 326-7 from 50 overs
A good looking total for Essex, but definitely chaseable in this day and age (especially given the scoring in the recent championship game at Cardiff). Varun Chopra played the anchor role with 111 off 133, while Tom Westley hit 69 off 54 and Dan Lawrence 56 off 37. Sir Alastair Cook scored 40 off 41 to give the innings a solid start. Graham Wagg with 2-49 and Michael Hogan 2-52 were the pick of the bowlers. Given the nature of the Cardiff pitch so far this season I back Glamorgan to chase this one down.

Kent v Hampshire Hampshire 183-3 after 32.4 overs
Hampshire look to be going quite well here. James Vince made 56, while Sam Northeast and Rilee Rossouw are 38 not and 37 not respectively and seem to be going well. Matt Milnes has 2-24 from 5 overs for Kent. It is too early to attempt to call this one, but if Hampshire have a good finish to their innings and get somewhere close to 300 they will have a chance, while if Kent bowl well and restrict Hampshire to somewhere in the region of 250 they will be favourites.

ENGLAND’S WORLD CUP SQUAD

Here courtesy of Test Match Special’s twitter account is England’s World Cup Squad:

World Cup Squad

I rate Sam Curran a better cricketer than his brother, and would prefer to see him in the squad, but I have no huge problems with the selected squad, which has all bases other than slow left-arm spin covered. Liam Dawson, who some might conisder to fill that niche is not good enough in either department. If Liam Trevaskis develops his bowling to set alongside his promising batting (albeit he made a blob today) he may come to fill that particular niche in future, but unless you are prepared to select a non-batting spinner in Jack Leach for limited overs cricket there is no one else at present. I am glad that the selectors have not rushed the newly qualified Jofra Archer straight into the squad – a world cup is not the place for a player to be starting their international career.

PHOTOGRAPHY

My usual sign off…

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