Someone who will be making way from a side will be Kevin Pietersen after announcing his retirement from both international 50-over matches and international Twenty20 games with immediate effect.
It seems strange to me that it has been specifically tailored to international games, and therefore will still be competing in the Indian Premier League.
He cited the intensity of the international schedule and the increasing demands on his body as he reaches 32 years of age. I don’t completely buy it though I’m afraid. His body will have to go from going through the hectic schedule of the IPL, travelling all over India and then straight into the May Test matches of the English summer but he doesn’t seem to mind that? Maybe the huge amounts of cash he will receive from appearing in the IPL will mean he is still available for that competition.
While 32 is later in the sporting-life, some people have gone on longer in an era where the fitness and diet wasn’t paramount as it is now. People like Sanath Jayasuriya played until they were 40, and at the start of their careers they will have not looked after their bodies in the same way Pietersen has had to.
That said, Pietersen’s record for England has been impressive, an average of 41.84 in ODIs over 127 matches is a decent record and he has brought the switch-hit to the game, which caused controversy in itself! He was also the linchpin behind England’s t20 World Cup success of 2010 in the Caribbean and his aggressive approach at the top of the order gave England the impetus that had lacked from England’s limited overs sides in the past.
Limited overs sides and the past brings me onto Pietersen’s hectic week which saw him fined £3,000 for using Twitter to question Nick Knight’s place on the Sky commentary team. I don’t mind Knight’s commentary but Pietersen has started a bit of a debate. For commentating on ODI games, Knight’s record speaks for itself, he had an impressive ODI record and made over 100 appearances from England. But as Knight started the summer on the Test Match commentary team, Pietersen was referring to that record, not his ODI performances. While you can see Pietersen’s point, David “Bumble” Lloyd played just nine Test Matches and eight ODIs and nobody ever questions his place on the team.
That leaves a place open in the limited overs sides and James Taylor from Nottinghamshire must be in with a chance.
It won’t be a good thing for those wanting to see entertainment when the Outlaws visit North Marine Road for the flt20 later in the month if Taylor is with the national side.
He made a stunning 115 from just 77 balls on Sky this week and manoeuvred the ball all around the wicket to a point where the Hampshire lads weren’t sure where they should bowl to him. It just kept disappearing to the fence.
Another man who, similarly to Pietersen, doesn’t mince his words was in the news this week. Geoffrey Boycott laid the blame for Yorkshire’s poor season last year at Adil Rashid’s door. I have to agree with Boycott here. Rashid has been a bowler with ‘a lot of promise’ for a long while now and hasn’t really produced the goods. There is only so long you can persist with someone who isn’t producing the goods. Now and rightly so, Azeem Rafiq has been given his chance in the side, and to Jason Gillespie’s credit, he has given players a chance when others haven’t been putting the performances in.
His comments risked “alienating another British-born Asian player” after Shahzad’s departure according to cricinfo, but I find it crazy that in a world of equality that we are talking like this. Why should it matter where his roots are if he isn’t putting the performances in on the field? That’s how you earn and keep your place in the side, not what your family background is. Shahzad and Rashid haven’t put in the performances Yorkshire want so they’ve been loaned out and dropped, it’s as simple as that.
It was a disappointing weekend for all three Scarborough teams as each suffered defeat, two at the hands of Duncombe Park.
The 1st XI were bowled out for just 89 with Samrat Sharma’s unbeaten 45 the only innings of real substance. Yorkshire’s young left-arm quick bowler did the major damage taking six of the wickets.
Before that Tom Bruce and Ash Lyth took three wickets a piece, as Bruce continued his impressive form with the ball for Andrew Simpson.
Unfortunately it was the same for the 2nd XI who made just 105 at Duncombe Park. In reply the hosts were five wickets down but Brian Leckenby’s 55 lead the Helmsley side to victory.
I wrote last week that we had some plans to him, but we didn’t take the chances we created from those plans and his knock was the difference in the end.
Jordan Welford took three wickets, but his introduction came slightly too late for the 3rd XI as they were defeated by Duncombe Park 2nds. Bowling at the back end of the game, Jordan snapped up three quick wickets, but the Park captain saw them home with one wicket remaining.
To cap a very disappointing weekend the 1st XI were beaten by Barnsley at North Marine Road. Barnsley were able to include Yorkshire’s Oliver Hannon-Dalby but it wasn’t him that did the majority of the damage. Andy Simpson’s men were skittled out for 109 in response to Barnsley’s 205-6.
Tom Bruce impressed with the bat, making 40 to cap a good personal weekend for him.