Saturday, June 12

Bumble’s Blog: England’s winter tours, cricket learning from football and waiting for the vaccine | Cricket News



Bumble thinks cricket can learn from ideas used by Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp in football, starting with squad rotation

In his latest blog, Bumble discusses how he is passing the time while he waits for the COVID-19 vaccine, England’s winter tours and what cricket can learn from football…

Christmas is coming up but with coronavirus still out there it’s just same old, same old for me: not going anywhere, not doing anything. I’ve still not been out, still getting deliveries every week, still washing everything that comes into the house.

What I have got is a brazier so we burn all the packaging and can sit outside and stay warm, that’s something to look forward to. We do it twilight sort of time, a nice fire and we just sit around, have a glass of something and then go back in and watch something – often times the football, I’m still watching all of that.

I watch on iFollow and we tune into Radio York, my wife’s a York City season-ticket holder, they played last night at Ashton United, Accrington were away to Gillingham. We were doing quite well until Saturday when we got beat by Wigan – we scored three goals away from home and lost! It was the worst I’ve seen us.

The ambition is obviously the play-offs. You know how it is, we’ve just been on a good run, the run has ended so it is about being quick to start another run. That’s what you’re looking to do. We’ve got some tough matches with Blackpool and then Doncaster.

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Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Wigan Athletic and Accrington Stanley

Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Wigan Athletic and Accrington Stanley

I’m also watching all the time to see about the vaccines and where I am in line for it. I think I’m going to be in the fourth group, based on the current plans. I’ve got family who are paramedics over in York and they’re starting to get things going and people are getting their vaccinations which is good news!

I’m optimistic that from Easter onwards we might be out of this as long as we can keep getting this vaccine. The biggest problem is that people aren’t doing what the guidelines say, the police have got their hands full breaking up illegal parties – these people must think it doesn’t happen to them on their street.

As far as the cricket is concerned, I thought England were hasty in postponing the ODI series in South Africa. From reading between the lines, it seems that Cricket South Africa were very disappointed in our stand.

Were England too hasty in postponing the ODI series in South Africa? Bumble thinks so

Were England too hasty in postponing the ODI series in South Africa? Bumble thinks so

It’s unbelievably difficult in the bubble, I have been in it for a very short time this year so I’ve got every sympathy with the players, but I thought waiting another day would have sorted it out. In hindsight, with the two unconfirmed positive tests coming back negative, it would have done.

They did get the T20 series in and England were terrific as they prepare for these two T20 World Cups that are coming up. The other thing as you look forward and how the fixtures are panning out, it seems that we’re still obsessed with splitting these white-ball series between one-day internationals and T20s.

Having been a coach, I’m absolutely certain that with a World Cup coming up, that the coaches and players would rather just be playing T20s so they can try and get into the team, cement their place or get into good nick. It’s very obvious that teams will rest players for the ODIs, especially with the restrictions at the moment, as the teams will not see them as really being that important.

I think it is a no-brainer to play more T20s and fewer ODIs at the might and if the teams make enough noise to the governing bodies then they might revisit it. If not, you will just get one-day internationals with sides putting out their second string.

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England will treat the six Tests in Sri Lanka and India as three blocks of two and make changes to the squad mid-series, says national selector Ed Smith

England will treat the six Tests in Sri Lanka and India as three blocks of two and make changes to the squad mid-series, says national selector Ed Smith

In the longer format, Ed Smith has said England will treat the six Test matches this winter – two in Sri Lanka and four in India – as three blocks of two and rotate the squad where necessary. I agree with that 100 per cent.

That sort of thing is nothing new to me, I’ve advocated for a long, long time that if you’re doing it right you should have a big enough squad that you can interchange and freshen it up, like a football manager does.

He might rest a player or bring him on as a sub but they know well in advance which matches they want him to be not only playing in, but be primed to play and be absolutely top notch in that game because that’s when I really need him.

If you’ve got a strong enough squad, which I believe England have, then they should be able to do that comfortably. What it also does is extend the shelf-life of a player. I’m a massive believer that ideas in football can transfer into cricket, certainly in terms of squad rotation.

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Ed Smith, England’s national selector, describes Essex batsman Dan Lawrence as ‘inventive’ and ‘versatile’ after his selection for the Test tour of Sri Lanka in January

Ed Smith, England’s national selector, describes Essex batsman Dan Lawrence as ‘inventive’ and ‘versatile’ after his selection for the Test tour of Sri Lanka in January

Part of that rotation will be Dan Lawrence, who I’ve mentioned a few times; he’s got an opportunity as part of the England squad going to Sri Lanka. He’s a fine player, another young player like Ollie Pope, and he’s got a good opportunity here.

I’ve never spoken to him but he’s a real east-ender apparently, Jack the lad, he’s got something about him and I like players who are like that.

Jonny Bairstow is back too. Grab your chance, Jonny, grab your chance!

Until then, me braziers are keeping me going. It’s back to the old days with a night watchman, we’ve got The Nightwatchman magazine and I feel like a night watchman with me brazier.





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