Eng­land take note, prac­tice makes per­fect in Test arena

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - SPORT - From: Michael Robin­son, Berry Brow, Hud­der­s­field

HAV­ING noted the scores achieved by Eng­land in the Test first in­nings, and the start by the Pakistan team in theirs, I won­dered if their re­spec­tive scores re­flected the different ways the play­ers had built up to the Lord’s Test.

Eng­land’s play­ers were ei­ther ‘rested’ af­ter the long win­ter tours of Aus­tralia and then New Zealand, or played one-day thrashes in the In­dia Pre­mier League.

The Pak­ista­nis had a work­out in a five-day (four) Test match in Ire­land.

In York­shire, we re­call that Root and Bairstow were rested in the sea­son’s first three County Cham­pi­onship matches in April (one washed out) and then, duly re­freshed and recharged, went out in May at Es­sex and were out first ball and for seven, re­spec­tively.

Per­for­mances by Pakistan’s bowlers and then bats­men have been in marked con­trast to those of the team playing in ‘home’ con­di­tions.

Could the way Eng­land pre­pare for matches be any­thing to do with this?

Is deny­ing play­ers match prac­tice in the once weekly County Cham­pi­onship matches the best way to build form, or has the re­duc­tion in County Cham­pi­onship fix­tures re­sulted in us sim­ply not hav­ing play­ers up to the job of red-ball cricket any more? NON-LEAGUE foot­ball fans in North York­shire can only mar­vel at the tremen­dous achieve­ment of Har­ro­gate Town.

Con­trasted with the for­tunes of York City, whose dis­as­trous sea­son in Na­tional League North is wor­thy of no great comment, the Wetherby Road­ers’ pro­mo­tion to the Na­tional League, non­league’s top ta­ble, comes as a tremen­dous fil­lip for the area, and for York­shire in gen­eral.

The Har­ro­gate man­age­ment de­cided to go full-time this sea­son, and from the out­set Har­ro­gate were free-scor­ing pace-set­ters. Ex­cept for a late blip in form, they may well have been pro­moted as cham­pi­ons.

It was com­fort­ing and rewarding to progress through the play-offs, cul­mi­nat­ing in the sell-out win against Brack­ley Town.

To at­tract an at­ten­dance of 3,000 shows just how far the club’s stock has risen.

For­tunes can change quickly in foot­ball. Har­ro­gate’s el­e­va­tion is mir­rored by Guise­ley’s rel­e­ga­tion, the Nether­moor men not hav­ing re­cov­ered from a poor start.

Pro­mo­tion from Na­tional League North is dev­il­ishly dif­fi­cult. Guise­ley will have to re­group and take their chance against the Min­ster­men and sev­eral other very high-pro­file clubs next sea­son.

It re­mains to be seen how Har­ro­gate will adapt to the ex­i­gen­cies of the Na­tional League but Simon Weaver’s men de­serve every credit for achiev­ing a mar­vel­lous goal.

In­creased sup­port is sure to be a great 12th man at home matches, and there will be many in­ter­est­ing and his­toric grounds to visit. The jour­ney is only just be­gin­ning.

From: Tim Mick­le­burgh, Boule­vard Av­enue, Grimsby

I read re­cently that the in­ten­tion was for the new T20 (sorry, the Hun­dred!) tour­na­ment to be screened solely by the BBC.

But once again the ECB gave way to the Sky mil­lions so that most of the games will not be on ter­res­trial TV.

Yet the author­i­ties con­tinue to won­der why cricket is not at­tract­ing new fans and sup­port­ers!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.