Thursday, November 17, 2011

Doesn't forty-eight hours make a power of difference?

Doesn't forty-eight hours make a power of difference when you're looking at these matters?

I signed off last time having figured what I thought was the best way of assessing three candidates for the workhorse role in the bowling attack, and within a day we had Harris flying back with a question mark over the long term prospects and Watson breaking down within four overs, both factors underlining the difficulties of doing anything too far out from the event, which is, of course, the Gabba test in just under a fortnight's time.

Now, with an impending birthday, associated celebrations, a brother on the premises and a subsequent decline in writing time, I find myself looking at South Africa at (effectively) 3 for 200 in the second dig, against a seemingly toothless attack. Watson hasn't bowled in the innings, Johnson's gone wicketless for thirty-something more than Cummins (who's snared two) and Siddle (who's the most economical of the three, but you want your workhorse to be taking wickets too, don't you?)

Under normal circumstances the selection of Australian teams and touring parties has been based around an established side with a bit of tweaking around the margins and throwing in a couple of players to cover injuries and form issues.

It has been a long time since we've been on the brink of substantial (if not wholesale) changes, so a big part of the process is assessing which of the current playing group still fit into the long term structure.

Having used Harris, Hilfenhaus and Siddle in that workhorse role in the past, with Mr McDermott's redefinition of a good length it's worth looking at some of the workhorses we've used in the past to see if they can still cut it under the new regime.

You'd figure that if they can't manage that on their home turf (and yes, I know Harris is a transplanted Croweater, but he's taken plenty of wickets at the Gabba) they won't do it anywhere else.

That was my thinking anyway.

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