Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Gloucestershire v Derbyshire preview

If Derbyshire manage another win against Gloucestershire tomorrow, they will almost certainly go into the T20 competition in the giddy heights of first place in the County Championship...

I had to pause and read that sentence again. I have, after all, waited four years to write it...

Derbyshire have, as I suggested last night might happen, made one change to their successful side thus far, with Matt Lineker thoroughly deserving a call up after recent Second XI centuries. I remain convinced that Paul Borrington will become a first team cornerstone, but we need to know if Lineker, the stand-out batsman in the Derbyshire Premier League over the past few years, has what it takes to make the first-class game a natural consequence.

As a left-hander he will give a good balance to the opening pairing and make it hard for the bowlers to settle to a line. With three left and three right hand batsmen in the top six, there's a lot of settling required for the opposition attack. Lineker's contract expires at the end of the season and I would like to see Karl Krikken give him an extended run now, the opportunity to establish himself and justify another deal. If he did so it would give a massive incentive to league players and no one would deserve it more. As an over-age player he needs to justify a place with weight of runs, but Lineker is a good cricketer and could well do it.

The Derbyshire squad, with Mark Turner my likely 12th man

Wayne Madsen (c), Martin Guptill, Matt Lineker, Wes Durston, Dan Redfern, Ross Whitley, David Wainwright, Jonathan Clare, Tom Poynton (wk), Tim Groenewald, Tony Palladino, Mark Turner

As for Gloucestershire, they have a talented batting side, with Kiwis Williamson and Marshall having good seasons. Alex Gidman has started slowly, but is too good a player to be out of sorts for long. I'm less convinced by their bowling though and think Derbyshire have every chance to make it five wins from eight in this game.

There is a confident edge to the team just now and as long as we keep doing the simple things, win the sessions and continue to work, an already healthy lead in the Championship might even be extended in four days time..

Unleash the Falcons...

1 comment:

Marc said...

You called it right,Peakfan. Most of the team picks itsel,doesn,t it?. Lineker,s inclusion is fully justified and like you say,he deserves a run in the team. I,m not sure i agree with your stance on Borrington though. Time waits for no man and in his case i think it,s beginning to run out. Krikken has been very fair with him,but like the rest of us,his patience is not inexhaustable. If Borrington is ever going to get anywhere,he has to learn to punish bad balls. The problem is,he gets in such a defensive frame of mind he sees ever ball as a live hand grenade. Unless or until that changes,his progress chart will continue to flatline.

Compliments indeed from Mr Gidman. I,m sure we are not going to be fooled into thinking the season is over,even if we win this game and the next against Leicestershire. As soon as you THINK you,ve won something,that,s usually the signal for everything to go pear shaped.

After a year in the job i think Krikken has proved what an excellent coach,motivator and tactician he is. The dressing room is now a happy place,unlike the one he inherited. This time last year someone in the press said,"The proof of the pudding will be in the winning". Well,we now have the proof and the pudding tastes pretty good. In Madsen we have found a good captain who the players like and respect. Im pleased his own form is recovering nicely. As i said before a ball was bowled,we need both him and Durston to lead the way.

Let,s hope we have a good first day and set the tone for the rest of the match. Good luck lads.