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Prospects 2018
#1
Like a second marriage, looking forward to the start of a new County Championship season is becoming a triumph of hope over experience. Yes I realise a macintosh, fur hat and thermal underwear will be required (and that's just the players); games will be played on puddings that make dibbly dobblers unplayable demons; the promotion and relegation rules will be changed if it looks like Yorkshire might go down; etc. But I still so want there to be another vintage season of first class cricket before the authorities kill it. I want to believe that a few sunny days at Tunbridge Wells and Colwyn Bay can make up for the freezing torture the rest of the year. Ah well, I can dream.

For the Bears, the picture is a lot more interesting than it was this time last year. Then, the first team picked itself as there were no options. This time there are some choices to be made. Who will open with Sibley? Who out of eight or nine plausible batsmen won't make the cut? Where do we find a fifth bowler - is Rhodes up to it or will Keith Barker be batting at seven?

In Division Two, I expect Middlesex to take one of the promotion slots. For us to go up with them three things have to happen. First our experienced players have to do better than last year. Trotty excepted, they were all under par. They need their mojo back. Second our seam bowlers have to stay fit. Barker, Wright and Stone would be a good attack but if one or two get injured (and not sure how much Rankin will be available) our reserves aren't great. Finally, the youngsters need to turn promise into achievement. I don't think we will get all those things happening so we may come up short, finishing third or fourth.

I know, I know. I just can't help myself. I'm starting to get excited.
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parkfield bear
#2
Then there's the ladies, far more promising prospects and still playing in the top flight - all games played between early May and first week in September so a friendlier fixture list they came close last year and have a very good chance of winning the double this season - in Marie Kelly they have, currently, the most successful captain at the club :over60%win ratio in2017
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#3
(23-03-2018, 09:55 AM)GrizzlyBear Wrote: Like a second marriage, looking forward to the start of a new County Championship season is becoming a triumph of hope over experience. Yes I realise a macintosh, fur hat and thermal underwear will be required (and that's just the players); games will be played on puddings that make dibbly dobblers unplayable demons; the promotion and relegation rules will be changed if it looks like Yorkshire might go down; etc. But I still so want there to be another vintage season of first class cricket before the authorities kill it. I want to believe that a few sunny days at Tunbridge Wells and Colwyn Bay can make up for the freezing torture the rest of the year. Ah well, I can dream.

For the Bears, the picture is a lot more interesting than it was this time last year. Then, the first team picked itself as there were no options. This time there are some choices to be made. Who will open with Sibley? Who out of eight or nine plausible batsmen won't make the cut? Where do we find a fifth bowler - is Rhodes up to it or will Keith Barker be batting at seven?

In Division Two, I expect Middlesex to take one of the promotion slots. For us to go up with them three things have to happen. First our experienced players have to do better than last year. Trotty excepted, they were all under par. They need their mojo back. Second our seam bowlers have to stay fit. Barker, Wright and Stone would be a good attack but if one or two get injured (and not sure how much Rankin will be available) our reserves aren't great. Finally, the youngsters need to turn promise into achievement. I don't think we will get all those things happening so we may come up short, finishing third or fourth.

I know, I know. I just can't help myself. I'm starting to get excited.

The most positive thing from my point of view at this time is that this season WE CANNOT GET RELEGATED - The current team will do well to finish mid table - The squad (in spite of the hype surrounding youngsters with promise) is not strong enough - I am normally a very positive guy so I hope I am wrong BUT somehow I don't think so.
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#4
(23-03-2018, 10:11 AM)narsty simon Wrote: Then there's the ladies, far more promising prospects and still playing in the top flight - all games played between early May and first week in September so a friendlier fixture list they came close last year and have a very good chance of winning the double this season - in Marie Kelly they have, currently, the most successful captain at the club :over60%win ratio in2017

Warwickshire Women's Cricket is on the up  - Loads of talent on show - The Men could take a leaf out of their book eh?
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narsty simon
#5
My prediction for division 2:

1. Middlesex - If their bigger names perform. Given the players they have available they only have themselves to blame that they are in division 2.
2. Kent - A couple of useful looking signings, stable team
3. Northants - A useful couple of signings, David Sales has joined the coaching staff full-time. First XI looks useful, don't appear to have much in reserve.
4. Glamorgan - Plenty of young players who could be good prospects, but as we have seen at Edgbaston, their is no heavier burden that great potential. Squad seems to resemble an hour-glass; lots of players in their early 20s, lots of players in their mid to late 30s, not much in between.
5. Bears - Sad to say that as far as we can tell, none of the changes over the winter have done anything to address last year's glaring shortcomings. Much will depend on whether the younger players live up to their potential and whether the older players live up to their reputations.
6. Durham - Players still leaving the club, Burnham banned for a drug offence. Still undergoing a stabilisation period after their troubles and subsequent shafting by the ECB
7. Sussex - Several players out, only overseas players signed in, coaching setup has been much altered through the winter.
8. Gloucestershire - Several players leaving, not many coming in, Payne missing the start of the season due to surgery, Taylor banned from bowling due to his action
9. Leicestershire - Interchangeable with Derbyshire
10. Derbyshire - Interchangeable with Leicestershire

Which will probably be proved to be nonsense come September!
Bears fan, Wolves fan, blood red Socialist, a not so vital statistician...
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#6
I'm very happy that at long last there appears to be some competition for batting places.

Less happy about the bowling attack. Unless Pop has produced some magic over the winter and Olly Stone can stay fit for a decent part of the CC campaign I reckon randombears reading of our prospects is about right.

A year of CC consolidation and maybe a push in one of the hit and giggles.
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#7
In 4 day cricket 3rd. Agree with Dave C in 1 day cricket.
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#8
Impossible to predict in the mug's league, not playing everyone twice means if, say there is 1 stand out team beating everyone else up, a side that doesn't meet them twice but are lucky enough to face the triumvirate, who apparently have no right to be in 1st class cricket,, home and away, could finish higher than a team with reverse fixtures, add the fact that April will șee rain about and September bad light sets in reduces the whole thing to a bit of a farce  however I believe both our ladies sides(Warwickshire and Birmingham will win their respective competitions
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#9
How can you have promotion in a league where all the teams do not play each other an equal number of times. Farce is an understatement
LE - aka John
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#10
(28-03-2018, 10:17 PM)Leicester Exile Wrote: How can you have promotion in a league where all the teams do not play each other an equal number of times. Farce is an understatement

Don't get me started!
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#11
Here's my preview with forecasts:
http://deepextracover.com/2018/04/2018-s...wickshire/
Keep up-to-date with County Cricket at http://deepextracover.com/
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coolerking
#12
Describing Jeets as a water lily - I like it. Seems like a fair assessment, Terry although I fancy Warks odds in the 50 over game.
LE - aka John
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#13
The Graun are canvassing opinions from supporters about their club's prospects for 2018, if anyone fancies submitting something.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/a...eam-season
Lara, Tendulkar ... Pilling.
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#14
(05-04-2018, 02:18 PM)coolerking Wrote: The Graun are canvassing opinions from supporters about their club's prospects for 2018, if anyone fancies submitting something.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/a...eam-season

I had a crack at the Guardian thing and predicted us 3rd.  Really based on my, in "Ash we Trust" philosophy.  I had a look at the fixtures and reckon we don't play Derbyshire, Middlesex, Gloucestshire and Leicestshire twice.  I would count that as bad luck as we are missing out on a second fixture against the two absolute duffers (based on previous seasons), we avoid Middlesex at home though.
RB http://sideoncricket.blogspot.co.uk/
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#15
(05-04-2018, 08:12 PM)Reabank Wrote:
(05-04-2018, 02:18 PM)coolerking Wrote: The Graun are canvassing opinions from supporters about their club's prospects for 2018, if anyone fancies submitting something.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/a...eam-season

I had a crack at the Guardian thing and predicted us 3rd.  Really based on my, in "Ash we Trust" philosophy.  I had a look at the fixtures and reckon we don't play Derbyshire, Middlesex, Gloucestshire and Leicestshire twice.  I would count that as bad luck as we are missing out on a second fixture against the two absolute duffers (based on previous seasons), we avoid Middlesex at home though.
RB http://sideoncricket.blogspot.co.uk/
Gloucester are no great shakes either yet we play Sussex, who imo have the best coach in county cricket twice- if, as I suspect they win it, we could lose out on 2nd place to a team who have played them once!!
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#16
(06-04-2018, 08:17 AM)narsty simon Wrote:
(05-04-2018, 08:12 PM)Reabank Wrote:
(05-04-2018, 02:18 PM)coolerking Wrote: The Graun are canvassing opinions from supporters about their club's prospects for 2018, if anyone fancies submitting something.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/a...eam-season

I had a crack at the Guardian thing and predicted us 3rd.  Really based on my, in "Ash we Trust" philosophy.  I had a look at the fixtures and reckon we don't play Derbyshire, Middlesex, Gloucestshire and Leicestshire twice.  I would count that as bad luck as we are missing out on a second fixture against the two absolute duffers (based on previous seasons), we avoid Middlesex at home though.
RB http://sideoncricket.blogspot.co.uk/
Gloucester are no great shakes either yet we play Sussex, who imo have the best coach in county cricket twice- if, as I suspect they win it, we could lose out on 2nd place to a team who have played them once!!

And this is why many are losing interest in cricket - an imbalanced county championship played at the wet ends of summer with the rest of the season filled with as much slog fest as possible.
LE - aka John
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#17
Will only get worse in 2 years, no longer of interest to county members - just a cynical cash cow
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#18
Keep forgetting we don't play everyone twice in this division.

Thought Terry's preview was pretty fair.

Although after watching Bell and Trott devour the Durham MCCU popgun attack for an hour or so last Sunday I am beginnnig to get stupidly hopeful! Wink
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#19
Let's be positive - winners of all three competitions! In all seriousness, I think a top two finish in the championship is achievable IF our senior players perform to their ability. I also think we've got a good squad for the T20 so I'd expect us to at least make the quarters in that, and the One Day competition can't go any worse than last season!
Proud to be a Bear
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