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03/04/2018

sic Misbah, using his lead spinner to shock-and-awe batsmen as well as to dull-and-bore them in case the first approach doesnt work. He doesnt have much choice, given he has no allrounder and his pace

Ben Duckett is set to become Alastair Cooks ninth opening partner since the retirement of Andrew Strauss when the Test series against Bangladesh begins in Chittagong on Thursday. Willie McGee Jersey .Duckett, who has recorded four half-centuries from his most recent five innings on the tour, has been favoured over Haseeb Hameed, with Gary Ballance expected to retain his place in the middle-order - he will probably bat at No. 4 - and offspinner Gareth Batty returning for his first Test since June 2005.Cook confirmed that England will field three seamers (Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and Ben Stokes) and three spinners (Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid and Batty). It is interesting to speculate on which of the seamers might have missed out had James Anderson, or even Mark Wood, been available. Or perhaps the balance of the side would have been different. The pitch looked surprisingly green on Wednesday evening but all the predictions are for a heartbreaker for seamers.While Hameed remains highly rated by the England team management, they have been impressed by Ducketts form and his naturally positive approach to batting. With batting against the new ball offering perhaps the best chance for relatively free-scoring, the management have decided they might be missing an opportunity if Cook was partnered by the equally patient Hameed. And with the decision made to open with Duckett, rather than bat him at No. 4, if left Hameed, who is seen as a specialist opener, with little opportunity.Hameed could be in for a long few weeks now. While the talk is of everyone in the squad winning an opportunity at one stage or another before Christmas - and it is true that the ferociously hot and humid conditions will test even these impressively fit cricketers - it is not hard to see a scenario where he misses out. Englands selection policy over recent times has been to give players ample opportunity to find their feet at this level and Duckett, likes Alex Hales and Adam Lyth and Sam Robson before him, can reasonably expected to retain his place well into the India series.The case for Duckett is close to irrefutable. After a prolific season in List A and first-class cricket, he became the first man to win both the PCAs players player of the year and their young player of the year award in the same season and took to international cricket with two half-centuries in the three-match ODI series. Blessed with a wide range of strokes, fantastically fast hands and an apparently unflustered temperament, he may well be that England have found something quite special in Duckett. David Smith, the former Warwickshire batsman who has been CEO of Leicestershire and Northamptonshire, offered both Duckett and James Taylor their first professional contracts. He rates Duckett the more talented of the two; even referring to him as a genius.Perhaps there will be times, as he pushes at the ball, when Duckett is forced to tighten a technique that can leave a gap between bat and pad. And perhaps it will take time to adjust to this standard: there are few truly fast bowlers or top spinners in Division Two of the County Championship. But, aged only 22 (he celebrated his birthday on Monday), he has the time and talent to go far. It might also be noted by those who suggest the selectors only pick those playing in Division One of the County Championship, that both Englands opening batsmen play in Division Two. He does not have to look far for a role-model. His partner in Chittagong, Cook, will become Englands most capped Test player on Thursday. He has already broken just about every English Test batting record (including most Test runs and most Test centuries) and, aged 31, there could be trunk-loads more to come. Only Allan Border has played more consecutive Tests (this will be Cooks 132nd; Border played 153 in succession) and no non-Asian batsman has score more runs in Asia.It is asking a great deal for Duckett to emulate such levels but he is the sort of player who could have a decade in front of him at this level. Though tours to Bangladesh often spring an anomaly or two (quiz question: which former England captain made his Test debut on the previous tour to Bangladesh? Answer below), it really does seem as if this could be the first step in a wonderful journey.It says much for the enduring demands of Test cricket that, on the brink of another milestone, Cook once again finds himself leading something of a rebuilding job with this England team. The failure to find long-term replacements for the likes of Strauss, Kevin Pietersen, Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell sees England go into this game with only two centrally-contracted specialist batsmen (the number of allrounders in their top seven renders that a slightly dubious statistic), while the recall of a 39-year-old off-spinner underlines a sense that, for all the good things about county cricket, it has failed to produce quality spinners in recent years. The next nine weeks represent as tough a challenge as Cook has faced as captain. To win in India would be a remarkable achievement.To win in Bangladesh would be impressive, too. While Bangladesh play too little Test cricket to give themselves the optimum chance of success - they may well have played more had they agreed to the introduction of promotion and relegation in the format - they have a strong top six and a familiarity with these conditions that gives them a decent chance of improving their grim record against England (played eight, lost eight) at Test level.As if playing seven Tests in nine weeks is not hard enough, as if playing in Asia is not hard enough, as if playing in this heat and against spin bowling is not hard enough, England have also agreed to do so without adequate warm-up time. Playing one two-day match and one 45-overs a side game has not given their batsmen time to adjust to the conditions and a couple of them looked a little under par in the nets the day before the game.But it is such challenges that motivate Cook these days. Indeed, so concentrated is he on the redevelopment of this new England team that he admitted he required reminding of his impending personal landmark earlier in the week.For that reason, Bangladesh have probably never had a better opportunity to beat England. But if the last decade or so has taught us anything, it is not to write off Cook.*The answer to the quiz question is James Tredwell who made his Test debut in Dhaka in March 2010 and captained England in a T20I at The Oval against New Zealand in June 2013. Michael Wacha Jersey .C. -- Chris Thorburn thinks one of the reasons the Winnipeg Jets have been successful under new coach Paul Maurice is that theyre playing together as a team. Mike Matheny Jersey . Miller reached right to deflect Mikhail Grabovskis attempt with just over 2 minutes remaining in regulation, and then made two more saves in the shootout Sunday to give the Sabres a 2-1 win over the Washington Capitals. http://www.authenticcardinalspro.com/cardinals-brett-cecil-jersey/ . Newcastle dominated in the early stages but City weathered the storm and then raised its game in extra time. Negredo broke the deadlock from close range after a simple move in the 99th minute before Dzeko took the ball round goalkeeper Tim Krul to seal the victory in the 105th. Abdul Qadirs first international wicket in Australia is a gift for all, a googly as sweet as can be. It would come to be seen as sweet relief too because he was bowling it to a right-hander, from over the wicket. That Australian XI had five left-handers in the top seven and through the series Qadir chose to go at them from around the wicket. So the googly - his baby, his life and joy - was somewhat neutered before he had even bowled it. They swept him relentlessly from the angle.Kim Hughes was that first wicket, done up good and proper attempting a cover drive. Qadirs last but one international wicket in Australia was also a googly; unlike Hughes, the pinch-hitting Craig McDermott was bowled on the back foot, but like Hughes he too was clueless about the true intent of the delivery.Look them up. They bookend Rob Moodys - who else? - video on YouTube of Qadirs wickets in Australia. Of the 11 Test wickets in that video, all from the only Test series he played there, in 1983-84, five were wronguns and one a straighter, quicker one that may or may not have been a flipper - Allan Border certainly didnt know. Qadir didnt have a great series, his style cramped by a thin attack around him and by being unused to the surfaces he was playing on. But nobody forgot him.There were 15 more wickets in the ODI tri-series that season and plenty were wronguns. Some were superfine, like when Jeffrey Dujon skipped out to one that looked like it may drop outside off stump but instead drifted in and dropped somewhere between off and middle in front of him, and spun not between his inside edge and pad but past the outside of his front thigh. This was not a googly so much as a Muttiah Muralitharan offbreak nine years before Muttiah Muralitharan. It missed leg stump by a foot, though not Wasim Baris gloves, as he completed the stumping.Mushtaq Ahmed would bounce into Australia in not dissimilar style, just more sober of hair and mood. In 1995-96, he worked out Australian surfaces better than Qadir, though, of course, it helped having Wasim and Waqar thunder around him. But the googly was as singular. Recall its torment of Greg Blewett, wunderkind of the day, who twice responded to it as if during a maths exam he had been asked a question about Faizs poetry: WTF doesnt begin to capture it. Steve Waughs dismissal in the second innings in Sydney, meanwhile, was Qadir-Hughes Mark II. Even Danish Kaneria, 25 more Test wickets than Qadir and 76 more than Mushtaq, but with incalculably less aura than either, had a googly that had Richie Benaud purring in 2004-05.In other words, the Pakistani googly holds a place of some value in the Australian cricket canon, and given Pakistans modern record there, there isnt much else challenging it. Which brings us to Yasir Shah, imminently to introduce himself to Australian crowds, but to whom the googly is not so attached.He does - or at least did - have one, as well as an idea over its best deployment. Last year in Dhaka, he bowled four wide-ish legbreaks to Mushfiqur Rahim before slipping in a fizzing wrongun that bowled him. Since then, though, nothing sticks in the mind. The most memorable Pakistani googlies actually have come from the back of Azhar Alis hand.Not that it has held Yasir back. At first it was even kind of refreshing how little he used it, and that it wasnt the crutch it became for Mushtaq and Kaneria: they bowled the googly into the ground, in the process stripping it of whatever aura Qadir had given it. If they began by showing it off - Kanerias first ball in Test cricket was a wrongun - by the end it was something they could not wean themselves off; in that overuse, it went the way of Saqlain Mushtaqs doosra.Yasir is not that Pakistani legspinner. Little marks him as a linear inheritor of that line. If you see him side-on in his gather as he arrives at the crease, he doesnt even look like aa spinner. Ken Boyer Jersey. Mid-leap, he could be a fast bowler. He bowls at a higher pace, at which even insignificant turn, or no turn, can be lethal. That hurry, on the kind of slow wickets he has predominantly played on, is what has helped him. Ally that to his control, especially in his first year, and it is clear from the nature of his dismissals how he differs to Qadir and Kaneria especially: nearly 45% of his wickets are lbw or bowled. In their first 20 Tests, the corresponding figures for Qadir and Kaneria were around 36% and 25% respectively. Mushtaq is close, with 40%, but even accounting for a DRS-enabled skew, the gap speaks of a distinct mode of attack.Yasir can spin them sexy, especially when bowling to left-handers from around the wicket. But essentially, in how straight he is and the lack of big turn, he could almost be a shorter, stockier, less nerdy Anil Kumble. Of the great legspinners of the modern age - Qadir, Mushtaq, Kaneria, Warne, MacGill - Kumble is closest to Yasir in the percentage of lbws and bowleds after 20 Tests (41.4%).What, then, of the next three weeks? Watch any Qadir and Mushtaq montage from Australia and it is hard to dispute the latters contention that Yasir will need a fair bag of tricks - topspinners, wronguns, flippers, overspinners. Australian batsmen did not drive Mushtaq with the usual conviction because of the lingering threat of that googly; yet to go on the back foot to cut was to invite danger anew.Perhaps bowling a little slower than usual might help, although in truth, variation of speed will help more. That is the truth of Kumbles belated bloom in Australia, in which his first three Tests yielded five wickets and the last seven 44. Kumble had the benefit of a Terry Jenner intervention on the 2003-04 tour, Jenner advising him, in effect, to slow it up, or at least not be as mono-paced as he had been. The benefits were immediate, not least in a masterly dismantling of Ricky Ponting in Sydney: four mid-80kph legbreaks the set-up for the killer, non-turning 100kph-bullet. This year has not been easy for Yasir. He has the wickets, even the performances, but some of the sheen has come off. There have been stretches where it has not been obvious where his next wicket might come from, as if his ambitions have been hemmed in by a lifetime of learning by rote and an inability to think on his feet. He took plenty against West Indies, an exceptional feat on wickets that were slow even by UAE standards. But committed as he was, you couldnt miss the fatigue about him, most obviously in how often he missed his lengths.Neither should that be a surprise. Only Nathan Lyon has bowled more overs since Yasirs debut - 1065.4 to Yasirs 1057.5 and that too in seven more Tests. This is classic Misbah, using his lead spinner to shock-and-awe batsmen as well as to dull-and-bore them in case the first approach doesnt work. He doesnt have much choice, given he has no allrounder and his pace attack continues to perform better in the minds fantasy than necessarily on the field. And so the burden is high on Yasir, not as heavy as it was for Qadir in 1983-84 but not as light either as it was for Mushtaq in 1995-96. For the last few months he has not had the benefit of Mushtaqs tutelage either - a key presence in and around Pakistans set-up since Yasirs debut. If nothing else, he could at least have continued working with Yasir on improving that googly.Although, come to think of it, maybe it isnt the googly he needs as much as the presence to be able to do without it. Because we all know which Australian never had a great wrongun right? His great frenemy Kevin Pietersen wrote the best line about that: Warnie being Warnie, all he did was replace the missing googly with bullshit. NFL Jerseys Wholesale Cheap NFL Jerseys China Jerseys NFL Cheap Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys From China Cheap Authentic JerseysChina Jerseys Wholesale ' ' '