Mind your own...
Bumble thinks Australia should take a look at themselves before commenting on England.
Last Updated: 25/06/09 9:40am
The Ashes is getting closer by the day and I for one cannot wait. The England squad was announced this week and the main talking points were the exclusion of Steve Harmison and ex-captain Michael Vaughan. Well I think it's the right decision.
The agreement between the selectors and Vaughan was that he'd go back into county cricket and get back scoring runs, and whilst Yorkshire fans may be saying he's doing okay he hasn't managed to register any big scores. However I've seen him recently and I would say that there's a big score around the corner. The improving weather will certainly help batters.
But I certainly wouldn't discount Steve Harmison because they've picked him in the Lions squad. If they were going to draw a line under him they wouldn't have picked him. I think that they're happy to let him continue playing at Durham, where he's getting plenty of wickets alongside Graham Onions, and at the moment I wouldn't write off either of those two.
In a spin
If Cardiff is going to spin, let it spin. There's been a load of talk about how we need to stop it spinning; leave it be! That's what pitches in Cardiff do. We get hot under the collar if there's a pitch in England that has a certain characteristic. Everywhere you go pitches have different characteristics - some are quick, some slow, some spin and so on.
For that reason England need to play two spinners in the first test. Andrew Flintoff is going nicely so he'll be your third seamer and fifth bowler. Your other two would be Stuart Broad and James Anderson. There's your attack and in then waiting in the wings you have Ryan Sidebottom. He's the one bloke that nobody has been mentioning. He's alright again so we've got plenty of options. People are saying that England are better equipped than the Aussies when it comes to spinners, but I think they're better equipped, period.
The Aussies are always very quick to pinpoint English players. They were making comments this week about how shocked they were at Vaughan's exclusion and how Bopara is more concerned about his looks, but they really should be looking at their own. They have plenty on their own plate. They no longer have players like, Langer, Hayden, Gilchrist, McGrath and Warne, and they haven't got anything close to them either.
I thoroughly enjoyed the women's cricket on Sunday. If you get the chance go and watch this England side; they are brilliant. They face Australia in a Twenty20 international at Derby on Thursday; that promises to be a good game and I would definitely recommended heading down to see them in action. If you can't make it, then you can watch the action with us on Sky Sports.
Sunday's six-wicket victory over New Zealand means England are now double World Champions, having already been successful in the 50-over competition. There's a big gulf between the England team and the chasing pack; they're just not being challenged at the moment. Not that they'll be complaining.
I've been on the go non-stop this week. I just about caught my train out of Euston on Sunday night after the Women's Twenty20 final, was in Nottingham Monday, Worcester Wednesday, and am on the road for the rest of the week. It's pretty hectic, but at least the weather is ideal for cricket.Speaking of Nottingham, I received a few emails regarding my Fast Show reference - 'buono estente Michael Vaughan' - during the Twenty20 game between Notts and Yorkshire. I'm not sure where that came from but we can use another line from the show to describe the weather this week: scorchio!
Bumble answers your questions...
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Hi David. I read that Australia are considering calling up a 17th player due to the injury concerns hanging over Shane Watson. Why do the Aussies persist with this guy? While his one-day stats are decent his test record is average at best. Alan Bridge
BUMBLE SAYS:Australia persist with him Alan because they have nothing else. They've already sent Symonds home. Watson's struggles to put back-to-back matches together and yet again had to sit out their match with Sussex. But to honest I don't think England will be too bothered about whether Watson plays or he doesn't.
David. Although a hardened England fan I must say I was delighted to see Pakistan win the Twenty20 World Cup. I would never have put them down as potential winners following their defeat to England but they have proved me wrong. What did you think? Sam Thorley
BUMBLE SAYS: It was a terrific effort by Pakistan to win the Twenty20 World Cup. It was emotionally the right result. Younis Khan was outstanding and was very eloquent said at the end when saying that he'd done his bit and that this format was a younger man's game.
They've conducted themselves so well. I was in the same hotel as them and they were terrific. There's an Indian restaurant in Southall, and during the tournament they ferried food in for the players. I've never seen so much food going in. I'm not talking about a take away here; I'm talking about boxes full of food. The West Indian team were also staying in the hotel and they started ordering some as well. I met the owner and he was saying how he had to keep these lads in sustenance; well he done the trick as both reached the final!
Lots of you managed to identify last week's jukebox song, which was Going For The One By Yes. See if you can crack this week's.
"Yes, the last thing you said before ya hit the street / Gonna find me a janitor to sweep me off my feet / I said, 'That's all right, mamma, you, you do what you gotta do' / Well, I've tried to get closer, I'm still a million miles from you."
Send in your guesses below. Answers next week!