Media wrap: England’s loss in Barbados
With England drawing the Test series against the West Indies in the Caribbean, losing the third match inside three days, the media in the UK had plenty to write about, from the batting failures to the future of the coach and Jonathan Trott.
Former England all-rounder Ian Botham said in the Daily Mirror that he expected a few changes, and was annoyed by the lack of forward thinking with regards to the top order: "I've said throughout the trip that I wanted to see Adam Lyth given a go, and this would be the perfect time for him to replace Jonathan Trott, who has looked frenetic.
"Adil Rashid and Mark Wood are two more who would benefit from a game, and who could give the captain a real edge going forward. England have to find out about these players beyond what they can do in the nets. They have earned their chance to play and I think this is the week to see if they can cut it."
The Telegraph's Jonathan Liew opined that England were still looking for a star player who could do the job consistently and capture the imagination with a single effort: "The ability to win cricket matches, and win them on your own, is a curiously unquantifiable trait. Kevin Pietersen had it in spades; so too does Anderson, as he showed in Grenada.
"But you can be a great cricketer without being a match-winner, and vice versa. Phil Tufnell, Devon Malcolm and Mark Butcher were not exactly hall-of-famers, but they all won Test matches for England single-handedly. This England team, by contrast, is filled with promising youngsters still searching for their defining performance."
Former England skipper Nasser Hussain in the Daily Mail was unimpressed with England's spin bowling, and hoped Moeen Ali would soon pay back the faith that's been placed in him in that regard: "Even though Moeen Ali took 19 Test wickets against India last summer and could end up a very good off-spinner, he is far from the finished product and has been learning his craft here at the highest level. And Joe Root will always be a batsman who can offer a decent few overs of spin rather than the specialist that England needed in this Test.
"The first point to make is that if England were not prepared to pick Adil Rashid on that Barbados pitch then they will not pick him anywhere. That is not hindsight. A look at the Kensington Oval surface two days before the start told you it was exceptionally dry and crying out for two specialist spinners. It just seems an English thing to stick with what they know rather than recognising that they had a pitch for the leg-spinner and had to throw him in."
The Daily Express's Gideon Brooks felt sorry for James Anderson, who took seven wickets in Barbados and reached a number of milestones in the series: "The result was harsh reward for man of the series Anderson, who took seven wickets in the match and passed Dale Steyn’s mark of 396 when getting Shivnarine Chanderpaul to drag on. Anderson could not have passed more milestones or landmarks in the last couple of weeks had he been on a tour bus on his holidays in the Caribbean, let alone trying to help England win a series."
The Independent's Stephen Brenkley suggested that the batting in the third Test was indeed mediocre, from both sides, and that England should have taken the series with ease: "Before this tour started, the incoming chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, Colin Graves, had warned there would be an inquiry if England failed to defeat a mediocre West Indies. Roundly lambasted though he was, some of the cricket from both teams in this Test, particularly the batting, has been exactly that.
"Graves may suggest to his new director that it is time for a change. West Indies have been much more resilient and capable than many expected but they are eighth in the ICC Test rankings, England are third. The biggest disappointment for England is that they should perform so moderately after that their last-ditch win in the second Test, which seemed to have shifted the balance."
Cricinfo's George Dobell pondered coach Peter Moore's future, considering his biggest backers are now gone from the ECB: "Defeat in Barbados and a drawn series against West Indies might provide just the ammunition required to sack a man who was appointed by a regime that has now passed and seems never to have won the support of its replacement.
"While there is precious little time to make changes ahead of the next instalment in England's endless schedule – Moores flies to Ireland overnight on Wednesday in order to take charge of the ODI on Friday and New Zealand arrive for their tour on Monday – the ECB showed a ruthlessness in dealing with ex-managing director Paul Downton that will not have instilled security elsewhere."
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