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Archives for April 2009

Ashton joins TMS team

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Adam Mountford Adam Mountford | 09:45 UK time, Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Well after another hectic winter for Test Match Special with commentary from Sydney to St Lucia, from Bangalore to Barbados we are back for what promises to be the most exciting summer in English cricket history.

The start of the Test series against the West Indies is just the beginning of an amazing few months ahead with 10 one-day internationals, the ICC World Twenty20 and of course the Ashes. Plus, England's victorious women's team will try to complete a incredible treble as they defend their Ashes crown and compete in the Women's Twenty20 tournament which runs alongside the men's competition.

Of course, someone who would have relished the summer ahead would have been our legendary scorer Bill Frindall and it is still difficult to come to terms with the fact that he won't be taking up his usual position in the corner of the Test Match Special commentary box at Lord's.

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Face-to-face with Australia's new sensation

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Pranav Soneji | 12:36 UK time, Tuesday, 21 April 2009

For all the huff and puff that have surrounded new Australian batting sensation Phillip Hughes, you would half expect him to arrive in England in a locked cage under armed guard.

Much has been made about the potential impact Hughes could have on this summer's Ashes.

Instead, standing at 5ft 7in, he looks exactly how you would imagine an average 20-year-old Australian from upstate New South Wales would do.

Diamond earring twinkling from his right ear. Healthy covering of three-day stubble. An Aussie twang which would make Ricky Ponting sound upper class.

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Flower it is - but a cloak of secrecy remains

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Oliver Brett | 15:35 UK time, Wednesday, 15 April 2009

In this summer to rival all past summers for English cricket it would be churlish not to wish Andy Flower, on his first day in office as team director, all the luck in the world.

Not only is it essential that England put on a strong show in the ICC World Twenty20 in June, there is also the small matter of an Ashes campaign a month later.

And yet, a number of important questions remain unanswered - despite the fact the ECB's managing director Hugh Morris was challenged to validate the rather unsatisfactory search for a successor to Peter Moores.

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England one-day series ratings

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Kevin Howells | 10:50 UK time, Sunday, 5 April 2009

England's one-day series triumph will be devalued in some quarters as proving little when it should have been lost with two matches to go.

Fine, except England have also been honest about their success and aren't kidding themselves. Their appraisal seems to be they have good players who lack consistent performances but have showed some fight and spirit. There remains plenty to work with.

Here follows a lesson on my part in self-flagellation - my marks out of 10 for each player for the series working with a set of averages and performances gained in weather-affected matches.

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The loneliness of a long-distance cricketer

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Kevin Howells | 14:24 UK time, Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Kevin Pietersen is a genius. A genius with the bat and a driven personality which has and always will rub people up the wrong way. Andrew Strauss admitted he brought him on to bowl against Shivnarine Chanderpaul last Sunday because he has the knack of getting under people's skin.

A crucial issue now appears. Are we prepared to hear his views and respect his right to hold them, even if we disagree? Or only hear comments vetted and controlled by his management or sponsors?

By his own admission he is not a politician.

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