OPINION: England Should Bowl At Canterbury

Cricket folklore says that if you win the toss, nine times out of ten you should bat. (And the other time? You should think about it… then bat!)

But when it comes to the Women’s Ashes Test at Canterbury, cricket folklore might just be wrong in England’s case.

Here are 3 reasons why Charlotte Edwards should put Australia in if she has the opportunity:

  1. When you’re the underdog (as England surely are) you have to play your best suit first; and England’s bowling is undoubtedly a lot stronger than their batting.
  2. The weather on Tuesday looks like being warm and cloudy – swing-friendly conditions which Anya Shrubsole in particular should relish.
  3. The wicket at Canterbury probably won’t deteriorate much over the 4 days, and England haven’t got the attacking spinners to take advantage of it in on the final day even if it did, so batting 4th should hold no particular fears.

Oh… and in the immortal words of Lt. Colombo: One more thing!

Say England bowl, what’s the worst that could happen? Australia finish Day 1 on 250/0?

On the other hand if England bat, there is every chance that Australia could finish Day 1 on 50/0… having already bowled England out – and that really would be a disaster!

But what do you think?

(Plus, look out tomorrow for Raf’s Rebuttal™!)

2 thoughts on “OPINION: England Should Bowl At Canterbury

  1. Bowling first is the more aggressive option. Batting first the more circumspect one. We know we have to take 20 wickets to win, what we do not know is how many runs will be required. Given it will probably be a lot, it may be an idea to keep ourselves in the game as long as possible and bowling first is a good way of doing that. Having said that it will depend to some extent on conditions on the first morning, and the forecast then for the next four days. Body language of both sides in nets etc. may also give a clue nearer the time.

    “…England’s bowling is undoubtedly a lot stronger than their batting” – Maybe a bit, but not sure it’s as cut and dry as that. Both have good and bad days. Bowling not too clever at Worcester in favourable conditions.

    I see Martin Davies over at WCB is only giving England chance for a draw if they do very well. He also thinks a draw would be useful to England, and the best option they should go for (in direct contradiction to a recent article here). It would be good to see a nice, long competitive game either way. Outlast the men’s 3rd Test and go to the fourth day!

    If we really don’t think we’ll be able to bowl them out twice, then we may as well bat I suppose, but it seems a bit risky, and seems like playing into their hands to me. At some stage we need to back the bowlers to do the job (and hope that Lanning, Perry et al peaked too soon). Anyway I just want to enjoy the game and care more about that than the result to be honest (at least that’s what I keep telling myself!)

    Again I must say how great it is that this series is getting all the media coverage.


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