Tuesday, 9 December 2014

New Zealand Squad Speculation

Assuming everyone is fit... which they jolly ought to be, having (in most cases) had several months off... who will travel to New Zealand in February?

Against India last summer, England lined-up with just 3 specialist bowlers - Hazel, Shrubsole and Brunt/ Cross - with Knight, Gunn and Sciver combining to pick up the remaining overs with the ball.

Given our recent batting frailties, I'd expect a similar strategy against the White Ferns, which suggests an XI of:
  1. Charlotte Edwards
  2. Heather Knight
  3. Sarah Taylor
  4. Lydia Greenway
  5. Loz Winfield
  6. Tammy Beaumont
  7. Nat Sciver
  8. Jenny Gunn
  9. Dani Hazel
  10. Katherine Brunt
  11. Anya Shrubsole
Two others all-but certain to make the squad are Amy Jones (backing up Taylor behind the stumps) and fast bowler Kate Cross, who you'd expect to play some games on rotation, even if Brunt and Shrubsole stay fit for the whole tour. (Which, as we all know, is officially the biggest "IF" since sliced IFs!)

This leaves one, or possibly two, seats on the plane, which is where it starts to get tricky for the selectors! Laura Marsh? Danni Wyatt? Tash Farrant? My guess is that they'll hope that the "core 12" (the XI above, plus Cross) holds together for the ODIs; and then look to Wyatt and Farrant to step up for the T20s.

So... the full squad would be:
  1. Charlotte Edwards
  2. Heather Knight
  3. Sarah Taylor
  4. Lydia Greenway
  5. Loz Winfield
  6. Tammy Beaumont
  7. Nat Sciver
  8. Jenny Gunn
  9. Dani Hazel
  10. Katherine Brunt
  11. Anya Shrubsole
  12. Kate Cross
  13. Amy Jones
  14. Danni Wyatt
  15. Tash Farrant
Will the selectors agree with me? Will I still agree with me come January? Only time will tell!

1 comment:

  1. I am trying to reconcile the “Given our recent batting frailties” with the selection of a batting-only player with an ODI average of 17.25 from 16 innings (and that’s not mentioning this player being placed ahead of Sciver in the batting order). If this player is indeed the sixth best ODI batsmen we have then it really doesn’t say much about those you have not selected. Is our strength in depth that bad ?

    I take it as read (though you have not specifically stated this) that the afore-mentioned player (T20 average 8.31) would not make your T20 batting line up.

    One player you have made no mention of is Becky Grundy. First played for England in the first match in the T20 World Cup, ended up playing in every match with figures of 24-1-105-6 (Hazell’s were 21.1-2-106-4) and along with Anya was the only player to bowl her whole quota in every match. Got injured and was therefore unavailable this summer. No brainer for a place on the plane.

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