Friday, November 28, 2008

England return home after Mumbai terror attacks

England are to return home after the final 2 ODIs in their series were cancelled in the wake of the terror attacks in Mumbai. They may return for the 2 tests later in the year though as one was to be held in Mumbai that may need re-thinking. The T20 Champions League was due to begin next week and Mumbai was one of the venues but this has now been postponed until the new year.

Someone who had a close shave is Worcestershire's Kabir Ali who was meant to be in the Taj Mahal hotel at the time of the attacks but instead chose to see a movie instead.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Bell dropped for 5th ODI

Predictably Bell was dropped for the 5th ODI against India despite the fact certain other players have done no better than him (*cough* KP) though admittedly he could have done better and needed to push on. Well known 1 day specialist Ali Cook has played instead and made 10 off 15 balls.

Andy Moles new Kiwi coach

Former Bears opening bat Andy Moles is to be appointed the new coach of New Zealand. Andy has gained a lot of coaching experience since he retired from playing in 1998 having coached Orange Free State, Hong Kong, Kenya, Scotland and most recently NZ state side Northern Districts. The fact he took them from bottom to top in the NZ state championship in 1 year no doubt helped his cause a lot. He could have been the Bear coach a couple of years ago. Instead we had MG, nuff said.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bell watch : 4th ODI vs India

England fell foul of Duckworth & Lewis in this rain ravaged match. India made 166-4 off 22 overs but England were set 198 off the same number of overs. They made a decent fist of it with some excellent play from Owais Shah in particular but fell short ending up on 178-8. Bell made 12 off 15 balls, the openers did struggle.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Westwood takes over the captaincy

Ian Westwood has been appointed the club captain for 2009, a move i welcome as he did very well when he did the job for a few months last season and Darren Maddy's captaincy has been a bit... well odd a times. Of course the question with Westwood is his batting but he improved as a player when he was captain and Gilo is confident. So best of luck to Ian and thanks to Darren and i hope can continue to be a vital player for us.

Tony Frost has been awarded a benefit for 2009 too. No one is more deserving in my view.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bell watch : 3rd ODI vs India

England's epic quest for a victory in India continues, this time they were thwarted by the light and lost by D/L (though India were probably favourites to win anyway). Scores on the door are England 240ao off 48.4 overs and India 198-5 off 40 overs.

Bell had a decent knock, 46 off 47 balls, a strike-rate of 97.87. Bopara opened with him and scored 60 off 82.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Redevelopment hits a snag

The planned redevelopment of Edgbaston has hit a snag, 4 of the owners of the homes that need to be demolished are refusing to sell them to the club (and lets face it considering the current climate who would unless the club were offering a very good price). The club may consider compulsory purchase orders and would have council support.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Is the club running out of money?

Hot on the heels of the news that either Keith Piper or Dougie Brown will have to leave the coaching staff and the membership changes now we read that the SA trip for bowlers to be coached by AD has been cancelled for financial reasons. It apparently would break The King of Spain's coaching budget. This means AD will have to return to Birmingham earlier than expected.

Changes to membership

Warwickshire have sent a posting to all members (and also updated their website) with their new line-up of membership options. The county membership has gone, to be replaced by an "associate membership" where you pay £50 to retain all the rights of membership and "privileges" and then pay on the gate when you want to attend a game. There are also a series of "season passes" which allow you into games but not as members.

Over the last few years i have not been able to come to the ground as often as i would have liked (maybe 6-7 times a year) and so at first glance the associate membership looks good for me, but then at a second glance the "classic" season pass which includes all the county championship and non-T20 one-day games looks even better.

To be honest i prefer watching cricket side on to the wicket so seldom sit in the members area and i never vote. I am considering therefore the classic season pass for £75. Full membership is £150 so its quite a saving, i would miss BTB of course but i am sure i will get over it. I shall digest the membership pack when i get home anyway, i don't have to make a decision yet.

Bell watch : 2nd ODI vs India

Oh dear, England defeated again. At least not by as much this time though 54 runs is still quite a walloping. For the record India 292-9 and England 238ao. Not a good day for Belly either, he was run out for 1. A hot piece of work apparently.
Khan to Bell, OUT, athleticism at its best and Raina is the toast of the team at the moment, Bell taps it with soft hands in front of Raina at short mid-off and sets off confidently, the ball goes across Raina but it doesn't hinder his dive as he slides and in one motion under arms the ball at the stumps, there's no need for a replay, Bell was miles out of his crease

Bell needs a good score soon or the Voices of Doom i.e. the press box are going to be going all out to get him "rested".

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Two becomes one... in the coaching staff

The Bears are looking to reduce the size of their coaching staff to save £40,000 and merge the jobs of second team coach and emerging players coach. This pits Keith Piper and Dougie Brown against each other. Both have to reapply for this new job and of course someone is going to miss out.

The word is that Dougie will be the chosen one and Keith will miss out after 20 years with the club as a player and coach. Its sad for Keith but predictable that the coaching jobs would merge. When Dougie's role was announced last year i was a bit confused about what his role actually was. Merged with the 2nd XI coaching job it actually now makes sense.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Bell watch : 1st ODI vs India

India 387-5, England 229ao... oh dear. Bell made 25 off 35 balls and took 2 catches. What positives can we take from this KP?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Bell watch : England crushed by Mumbai

Chasing 223 England made only 98, Bell contributing 6 of those precious runs. Back to the drawing board KP?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Bell watch - England vs Mumbai warmup

England's first match of their winter India tour is a 1 day warm-up game against Mumbai. Bell made a creditable 58 with a strike rate of 93.54 as England racked up 297-4 and ran out fairly easy winners over Mumbai. Freddie got 100, KP got 6.

HK 6s triumph for England

England, managed by Ashley Giles and including several Warwickshire players, have won the HK 6s. To make it even better Australia were the team England beat. The final went down to the last ball and was England's 5th win in the competition and now they take home £56,000. Darren Maddy is probably glad now England didn't pick him for the Stanford series!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Maddy, Trott and Gilo prepare for HK 6s

Darren Maddy and Jonathan Trott have flown out to play in the England side that will take part in the annual Hong Kong 6s which will be held over next weekend. Ashley Giles will be taking time out from his regal duties as King of Spain to be the team manager. The rest of the squad btw is Dimitri Mascarenhas, Tim Bresnan, Ed Joyce, Graham Napier and Graham Wagg (who is an ex-Bear of course).

I was in HK a few years ago just before the HK 6s was to be held, and it is quite a well promoted event there. Of course i had to return home just before the event started. I always seem to be the nearly man!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Neil Carter agrees 2 year deal

Neil Carter, fresh from the Stanford Super Series with Middlesex (where he did OK), has signed a new 2 year contract with Warwickshire which will take him up to nearly 10 years with the club (he has been with us since 2001). Carts had a good 2008 for the Bears with ball and bat (especially at times in the T20) so signing again was expected.

Carter will not be going to the Champions League with Middlesex however as only players who were with the club when they won the T20 are eligible.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Bell watch : England vs Stanford Superstars

Well i'm glad i couldn't see this after all! I had to go to London at the weekend and was cursing the fact i couldn't see the $20 million match, but in the end it seems to have been a blessing. Belly only made 7 but then again out of 99ao it wasn't that bad after all. So what went wrong? Couldn't they handle the pressure? Were their minds elsewhere? England had better get it sorted out fast, can you imagine Australia getting into such a muddle?