A forum for Northamptonshire CCC fans
By onemorerun
#25718
The ET (and presumably the Chron) included an item last week mentioning that there had been calls online for Ripley and Wakely to be replaced. The journalists argued that R&W had earned the right to be allowed to turn things around.

What do people think? Both have of course been instrumental in turning things around from the low point of 2012, and we have actually won two trophies (something I feared I'd never see again). But, we are now hitting another low point, dreadful in all three competitions.

Personally, I think Ripley has done well on recruitment, picking up players from sometimes unlikely sources (eg Gleeson from Blackpool CC). Actual coaching is a problem. We probably need a top-class batting coach but I can't see one wanting to come to Northampton . On the whole, there are probably no obvious replacements for Ripley.

Wakely is difficult. He is the only Northants captain ever to win two trophies (Mushtaq, Watts and Lamb one each). He was of course supported by a good team, actually playing as a team, with some senior lieutenants (eg Cameron White). This year, I'm afraid I really haven't seen anything great on the captaincy front. Batting orders, bowling changes - nothing inspired. Easy to captain from the stands, but again and again, bowlers seemed to be taken off unnecessarily after cheap wicket-taking overs. In the ET article, there was a suggestion that R&W were doing the best they could with the resources available - bad workman blaming tools?

I feel some people are asking, what has Wakely done to deserve losing the captaincy. It must be equally valid to ask, what has he done to deserve keeping it.

Personally, I have been reluctant to advocate replacing Wakely as captain. However, with every match, that reluctance diminishes a little bit more.
By Den Buckett
#25722
I would certainly like to see Ripley continue, but it is worrying that he is saying there wont be many changes in the winter. Many players are under contract which makes it difficult, but we really need major changes.

Giving Wakely the captaincy before he had proved himself with the bat was a mistake which has now led to this difficult situation. Should he be dropped from the team or maybe just lose the captaincy so he can work on his batting? Personally I can't see his batting improving now.
By onemorerun
#25907
Now we know that Kleinveldt's not coming back, presumably we will try to get a top batsman as our overseas player (always acknowledging that the ECB deliberately made it difficult to get anyone decent!) Perhaps the captaincy too could be on offer.
By Shortlegs
#25911
I'm not sure about Ripley any more. He's been a great coach for us but perhaps it's gone a bit stale the last couple of years. I agree that recruitment has been good, but our one-day cricket (in general) and CC batting has been under-par for the last couple of years.

Wakely hasn't had his best year as captain but I'm not sure who else we've got who is captain material. Cobb may be one, but he's now become a one-day specialist, so who would captain the CC team?

I believe we need 3 or 4 new players for next year. One top, top batsman (for all comps if poss), another solid, experienced batsman, an all-rounder and a quality spinner (and a genuine fast bowler if Gleeson goes)

Don't know the contract situation of our players but we've already lost Duckett and Kleinveldt. I would also say goodbye to Crook, Keogh and maybe Richard Levi, who I'm a fan of, but he's had a very poor year and I'm not sure he'll ever be like he was again, especially now his mate Kleainveldt has gone. If these were all to leave we must be able to recruit a few more players surely?
By onemorerun
#25914
Keogh and Levi are both contracted until end of 2019 season apparently.

They've both had poor years, but hopefully next year will be different. The trouble is, there are very few recruitment candidates about. I'm a bit concerned about Curran - he doesn't seem to have shown much yet to justify having been given a contract until the end of 2020 (the year not the format!)
By onemorerun
#25920
This is when I think players' contracts are up (based on NCCC website News section):

2018 - Zaib, Vasconcelos
2019 - Keogh, Levi, White, Newton, Wakely, Buck, Cobb, Gleeson
2020 - Rossington, Curran, Procter, Sanderson, Hutton
User avatar
By Bucksman
#25931
onemorerun wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:47 am
I'm a bit concerned about Curran - he doesn't seem to have shown much yet to justify having been given a contract until the end of 2020 (the year not the format!)

Yes, his introduction has been disappointing, based on what we know of his pedigree and the exploits of his elder siblings. We can't be sure if it is a question of nervous starts, lack of confidence and/or having attracted some very good deliveries. The club clearly feel he has the potential to succeed at First Class level.
By onemorerun
#25981
Shortlegs wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:28 am
Wakely hasn't had his best year as captain but I'm not sure who else we've got who is captain material. Cobb may be one, but he's now become a one-day specialist, so who would captain the CC team?

I believe we need 3 or 4 new players for next year. One top, top batsman (for all comps if poss), another solid, experienced batsman, an all-rounder and a quality spinner (and a genuine fast bowler if Gleeson goes)
As I've said in the past, we don't have any problems that recruiting eleven new players wouldn't sort out!

We have now recruited Muzarabani (something of a gamble to award a three-year contract?) but he clearly won't add anything to the batting.
User avatar
By Ghostie Mallender
#25982
I'm quite happy with Ripley and Wakely staying.
With regards to Wakely's batting average, he averages 31.39 this year with only Vasconcelos (& Crook averaging more). I was also surprised to see that Alex's highest score in 1st class cricket is only 123...really surprised. I would also look to drop him down the order to 5.
The main concern for me is the rest of the batting.
Newton 29.17
Proctor 27.53
Duckett 25.00
Levi 24.44
Rossington 20.64
Cobb 17.00
These simply aren't good enough and it's no wonder we don't win many CC2 matches with these averages.
The bowling is fine I feel especially on the fast bowling front with Sando, Gleeson, Buck and Hutton being sufficient for next year added to the new Zimbabwean lad.
Spin is a problem with Zaib not bowling many overs this year and also not contributing with the bat.
I agree that with Kleinveldt going, we need a top overseas batsman to replace him. Added to this, we need another batsman to replace Ben.
1 Newton
2?
3 Vasconcelos
4 ?
5 Wakely
6 Rossington / Keogh
7 Proctor
8 Buck
9 Hutton
10 Gleeson
11 Sando
By onemorerun
#25983
Can't disagree much with that team. I note, however, that it doesn't include either of the two players we've just recruited in 2 and 3 year contracts.

I've been a big fan of both Cobb and Levi but very disappointed by how they have to be hidden away in the middle order for CC matches, when they're even picked.

Zaib can't really prove anything if he's not picked (as in t20) or not bowled (as in CC).
User avatar
By Ghostie Mallender
#25984
I'm more than happy for youngsters like Curran and Muzarabani to come into the side as long as they prove their worth (just like Vasconcelos has done this year).
I would also like to see Charlie Thurston getting a chance in 2019.
Looking at my side for 2019 and the averages for this year, there is a case for dropping Rossington and putting Curran in at 4 or 5 and Wakely at 6. That just leaves the question of using Vasconcelos as WK.
By Shortlegs
#25993
One of our problems is that there is very little, if any, real competition for places, particularly in the batting line-up once the season gets underway. There is basically enough cover to deal with the 2 or 3 apparently inevitable injuries throughout the season, meaning that the batsmen are rarely really fighting for a place in the team in any if the formats.

If the budget doesn't stretch to increasing the size of our squad perhaps we should look more carefully at fitness or ways to minimise injuries. Either we are just very unlucky with injuries or there is a problem. Newton and Levi, for example, seem to miss a large chunk of pretty much every season through injury. This year Duckett, Rossington and Keogh have also been out for a significant amount of time.
By Den Buckett
#25995
Ghostie Mallender wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:29 pm
I'm quite happy with Ripley and Wakely staying.
With regards to Wakely's batting average, he averages 31.39 this year with only Vasconcelos (& Crook averaging more). I was also surprised to see that Alex's highest score in 1st class cricket is only 123...really surprised. I would also look to drop him down the order to 5.
The main concern for me is the rest of the batting.
Newton 29.17
Proctor 27.53
Duckett 25.00
Levi 24.44
Rossington 20.64
Cobb 17.00
These simply aren't good enough and it's no wonder we don't win many CC2 matches with these averages.
The bowling is fine I feel especially on the fast bowling front with Sando, Gleeson, Buck and Hutton being sufficient for next year added to the new Zimbabwean lad.
Spin is a problem with Zaib not bowling many overs this year and also not contributing with the bat.
I agree that with Kleinveldt going, we need a top overseas batsman to replace him. Added to this, we need another batsman to replace Ben.
1 Newton
2?
3 Vasconcelos
4 ?
5 Wakely
6 Rossington / Keogh
7 Proctor
8 Buck
9 Hutton
10 Gleeson
11 Sando
Don't forget that Rossington is wicketkeeper and Procter allrounder so you don't expect their averages to be as high. All of the 'batsmen only' players have been really poor although I can forgive Curran and Vasco as it is there first season with us.
By onemorerun
#26002
I don't think Vasco needs forgiveness - he's averaging 35.

As for comment by shortlegs, I've been saying for years that we have too many non-impact injuries - a physio friend of mine says there must be something wrong with off-field fitness routines. When you look back, we very rarely even start a season without injuries.

On Ghostie's team, it is shameful that we can only name three specialist batsmen - one of whom has just joined, one has been injured for months, and the captain whose record is way below what it should be.

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