Pattinson Selection Is Madness

20 07 2008

If “Flintoff” was the name on everyone’s lips last week, this week it’s been “Pattinson” as England’s selectors dropped a howler. Too much fuss has been made of his origins and it’s clouded the issue. He was born in England to English parents. Besides the Proteas might point to Kevin Pietersen playing for England and say that that ship has sailed.

No, the issue isn’t that he’s not English, he is. The issue is that he’s not very good. While he is certainly decent and a hard working and “honest” cricketer, that’s not enough for a player making his debut at 29. At that age you’ve got to be exceptional. A quick look at England’s opponents in a year’s time, Australia, sheds much-needed light on this.

Stuart Clark is a name England fans will remember from his debut Ashes series, a series where he arguably out-bowled the likes of Glenn McGrath and Brett Lee. On his debut, against, interestingly enough, England’s current opponents South Africa, he picked up 9-89 and the Man of the Match award. Darren Pattinson’s figures were 2-95.

Arguably even more impressive has been Mike Hussey, who, like Stuart Clark, made his debut in his 30s and currently boasts an average of 68. England seem keen to replicate this but they’ve neglected one “tiny” detail. Pattinson might be the same sort of age as those guys were when they had their debuts but they were domestic veterans.

Neither of those had played just 11 first class games before their debut. England have gone from picking players too early (Plunkett, Mahmood) to picking them too early and when they’re too old to develop further. The selectors have lost their marbles.



One response

24 07 2008
Preparing For The Proteas « Textual Relations

[…] the rumour mill is already in full flow. The first thing to get out of the way, however, is that despite it being a major error of judgement, the selection of Darren Pattinson alone simply does not explain why England were outplayed as a […]

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