Michael Carberry – A Realistic Option

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Adding on from what I discussed in my last article, the Sky Sports Presenters seemed to back up some of the comments I made about England needing to have a variety of options in the top order in ODIs. Nasser Hussain stated that England must have a “Plan B”, suggesting that Michael Carberry would be a dynamic option as an opening batsman in Limited Overs Cricket.

This came on the back of his innings of 60 off just 45 balls against Surrey in the T20 opener on Wednesday evening. During this innings he combined classical batting, alongside brute force yet with the ability to play innovative shots.

The analysts (David Lloyd, Nick Knight & Hussain) stopped short of stating that Ian Bell should be dropped for Michael Carberry, though they suggested that Carberry being extremely fit, at the age of 32 still has an international future. Carberry, formerly of Surrey and Kent, only foray into international cricket came in 2010, where he managed a couple of pretty 30s against Bangladesh.

Personally, I believe that Carberry deserves his chance at some stage in the near future. He has battled adversity throughout the early stages of his career, when he struggled to get playing time at either Surrey nor Kent. Moreover, he has recovered remarkably from a blood clot he suffered in November 2010. The commentators on Sky Sports where suggesting that he is the most improved cricketer on the county circuit over the last 2 years.

Being a key cog in the engine at Hampshire, I would not be surprised if Carberry gets a call-up for the ODI games at the end of the summer. I think the key as Nasser Hussain mentioned is “Plan B”. Notoriously, England have really struggled to get going during the PowerPlay overs at the beginning of their innings. I seem to remember the 2007 World Cup being a case in point, where England moved at a pedestrian rate during the first 15 overs, with Michael Vaughan and Ian Bell digging England into huge holes at the beginning of the innings.

As mentioned in the article below, there is a balance that must be struck between getting off to a flyer and keeping wickets in hand for the latter overs. Michael Carberry is more than just a pinch-hitter. He is a quality batsman that has the ability to score big runs, in a short space of time, and put the opposing bowlers on the back foot.

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