OPINION: Could England ‘Pass The Torch’ For Pakistan T20s?

England’s international series against Pakistan is still some 6 weeks away, but no doubt coach Mark Robinson is already considering his options for the squad… or squads… he will select.

The ODI series is a “must win” with England currently 6th in the Women’s International Championship table, albeit with 3 games “in hand”; so they have to field their strongest side as they look towards the 2017 World Cup.

But the T20 series is a different matter, perhaps? The next big T20 event is two years away, and the England that take the field then are likely to be a very different team, with a number of current players expected to retire after the World Cup.

With this in mind, one crazy suggestion might be to “pass the torch” for the T20 series – field a young side, with both eyes on the future – not just for the next year, but for the next decade.

What might such a team, with a five to ten years of cricket ahead of it, look like?

  1. Eve Jones
  2. Georgia Adams
  3. Fran Wilson
  4. Sophie Luff*
  5. Cordelia Griffith
  6. Sophia Dunkley
  7. Ellie Threlkeld+
  8. Steph Butler
  9. Freya Davies
  10. Tash Farrant
  11. Alex Hartley

Will this happen? Of course not – it is too crazy… by a lot more than half! But it would be nice to think that the management have got their eyes on one or two of these players for the Pakistan T20 series… and by “one or two”, I don’t mean the “one or two” who are already part of the squad – they are a given!

(The ones in bold are the ones outside the current contracted squad that I think they should be seriously considering – one batsman (Luff), one fast bowler (Davies) and one spinner (Hartley).)

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12 thoughts on “OPINION: Could England ‘Pass The Torch’ For Pakistan T20s?

  1. That crazy? Really? I’d say blood at the very least the three in bold at some point or another in the series, and preferably more. All three games would be ideal as one game – the old in-and-out that seems common in the women’s game – tells you little of a player’s potential at the top level. With only a half series in the ODIs (three matches does not a series make!) your options there are limited but why not try some new faces there too? Teams need evolution not revolution so drip feeding new talent should always be in selectors’ minds.

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  2. Three initials why not… WSL

    Reckon the ECB will want all the ‘star’ players ready and on show, the WSL will be the best opportunity for most of the future stars to state a case.

    also SKY televised T20s will also influence ECB thinking.

    Sorry to be so cynical but I hope to be proved wrong it is what England needs.

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  3. The principle they should be adopting is that everything T20-esque from now to the next T20 WC should be geared to winning that WC (except perhaps T20s within an Ashes series because they have significant meaning within that series).
    This means building a team that isn’t going to collapse under the pressure of international competition within a world cup – as has happened in recent T20 WCs.
    Whether that means (a) bringing in new players or (b) solving what it is with the current crop that means we keep falling short or both (a) and (b) I’m not near enough to offer an opinion.
    What is certain is that something has to change in T20. Doing whatever it is that they’ve been doing will only produce exactly the same results. As Einstein stated ‘Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results’.

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  4. Get a few of these in for sure, maybe Luff, Jones and Wilson given our major problem has been batting. We cannot afford to repeat the situation where not a single player made their England T20 debut between the 2014 and 2016 WT20s. As I’ve said before on this board, Knight, Greenway, Sciver and Wyatt is not a middle order that will worry the top attacks, so if these four appear together in any England team again I might not be responsible for my actions! The easy option for the coach might be to stick with all of them, and they may even look half decent but that would only be because they are playing a weaker nation in English conditions. Certainly Wyatt’s time must surely be up, she rarely bowls now and she has failed to get past 41 with the bat in a staggering 106 appearances for England across all formats.

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    • Not really. Not sure why Sciver playing is an issue. She normally delivers either with bat or ball. Extremely unwise to leave her out. Wyatt bowled loads in WBBL and continues to do so in County, and is pretty successful. In T20, as long as a quick 20 runs at over 100 strike rate remains useful, it would be unwise to get rid of Wyatt either, ODI’s though are a different matter, I might agree she would struggle to get in that team. As for Greenway, not sure she offers as much as Wilson these days in any format. And Knight really needs to have a good summer for England not just at County, to cement her place, let alone future captaincy, Should bat further down the order maybe or decide if she is a batter or all-rounder. Indeed one reason I think that Taylor, Elwiss, Sciver etc. are all getting WSL captaincy experience is because the management are panicking about the next choice of captain after Lottie.

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      • James, I enjoy reading your comments which are often insightful, and admire your loyalty to the cause, but, in the interests of balance, you have to let go of your Wyatt “love-in” and move on.
        Bowling in the recent WBBL, how many international batsmen did Danni bowl to and either contain or dismiss? She has only bowled 1 over in over 2 years of T20’s because the England set-up decided that she isn’t an international bowler.
        You have suggested, again, that “a quick 20 runs at over 100 strike rate remains useful”. I agreed with this point the last time you made it, but in all of her 65 T20 internationals (spanning more than 6 years) she has only achieved this 6 times. Danni plays extensively across the line and International teams have long worked out that a straight ball is all that is required to either bowl her or get a top edged catch. Some county teams have learned this also and when the rest wake up to this fact (or find bowlers who can consistently bowl more than 2 straight balls per over but that’s another story) you’ll probably find a high proportion of her county runs will dry up also. She isn’t making the contribution that you want to believe. Martin’s comment about Danni is spot on.
        Women’s Cricket Blog commented (approx. 2 years ago) that Danni’s batting and bowling was contributing very little to the England team. Nothing has changed since then and she has been extremely lucky to have had her central contract renewed the last two times.
        If you throw into the mix the dropped catches and missed run outs from the recent T20 world cup, then even her fielding, that you previously implied was worthy of her selection, is falling short of the mark.
        A number of the current England players form from the T20 world cup was patchy at best. They can all try to justify their selection by pointing to match winning contributions in England’s cause that they have all made in recent years. Except Danni, she can’t because she never has made one.
        Just saying.

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    • “Certainly Wyatt’s time must surely be up, she rarely bowls now and she has failed to get past 41 with the bat in a staggering 106 appearances for England across all formats.”

      Concentrating on T20 (ODI and Test performance are not really kernel to a debate on T20) then Wyatt has indeed failed to get past 41 in 46 innings (avg = 12.28, SR = 103.77). Of course if this is the yardstick against which players should be judged and dropped then one would have to also advocate the dropping of Beaumont (highest=37 from 27 innings, avg = 12.91 and SR = 84.61) and Knight (highest=30 from 28 innings, avg= 13.91, SR = 103.22). although perhaps, like Wyatt (who absolutely does bowl), Knight can claim she has a purpose as a bowler.
      Conversely, using this yardstick, Winfield (highest=74 from 15 innings, avg = 17 and SR = 92.24) who has been dropped, should not be.

      A player who I reckon was a no-brainer as a T20 batsmen was Susie Rowe, one of the few players for England who could effortlessly hit a six and who in 10 innings had a scoring rate only beaten by Edwards and the 2 Taylors (of those that have batted 10 innings).

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  5. It was madness to renew all these players contracts for another year. Sent the wrong message beyond the World Cup and in terms of budget will surely put financial constraints on any squad restructuring.

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  6. England do need all 6 WIC points pretty badly, so am tempted to agree that we won’t have much room to manoeuvre the best ODI squad. That said, if and only if we do go 2-0 up in the ODI series, maybe one or two new players could be introduced in the final game. It depends on how things go,

    Now that the T20 WC has come and gone, there’s little excuse to use the “results are everything” argument in T20 internationals for a while though. We need to develop the squad, and if that means losing a few games in the process, so be it. That squad above would be good enough to beat “Pakistan A” over here, so it would be competitive against their top side, but I can’t see England going for anything like that unfortunately. As many of them as possible though, definitely Wilson, Farrant and Hartley and probably E. Jones as well.

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  7. also can anyone see Lottie missing out on England appearances, she warrants a place but taking a back seat I’m not sure….

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  8. John you really went to town on me, but there is no need since I agree with many of your comments. You must have misinterpreted some of my earlier points because I have been quite critical of Wyatt. The only thing letting her play has been that no-one else was really pushing themselves forward either.

    Wyatt “love-in” tho. Wow. That’s funny.

    I’m not the sort of person that doubles down when it’s obvious I’m wrong, and I don’t *want* to believe anything, so I don’t know where that came from. I too have noticed that her fielding / catching has got worse of late. If England want to stop picking Wyatt and “move on” then fine, my only concern would be that they pick a decent player to replace her contract that they actually plan to regularly use in T20Is.

    How much of this current crop of players aged 23-25 that appeared around 5 or 6 years ago and haven’t really improved (Wyatt not the only one!) is down to the player’s failure, and how much is the way they have been let down by the system (ineffective coaching, being picked, dropped, picked, moved around, arbitrary decisions about bowling etc.) is another question. By your tone I must assume you like to think it’s more the former. Hmm.

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