Former Kent, Leicestershire and England wicket keeper Paul Nixon (@Paulnico199) joins me on the latest episode of the One Stump Short Podcast to discuss England’s options behind the stumps, how keepers develop and improve in the modern game and the pressures of the position.
Paul also shares his Caribbean Premier League experiences following two seasons (soon to be three) as Jamaica Tallawahs coach.
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Find out more about Paul’s work as a coach and public speaker at paulnixoncricket.com
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The 2017 County schedule is somewhat quirky. Almost everyone knew this heading in to the season, with dedicated blocks defined for red ball and white ball cricket (both 50-over and 20-over).
It hasn’t always been popular – with some fearing the County Championship has been further pushed to the margins – but even beyond this some scheduling decisions have been odd to say the least.
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Having registered his third century of the season on Sunday, Durham’s Keaton Jennings has demolished any lingering concerns there might have been that he was some sort of one season wonder.
But what happens next for the talented 24-year-old?
With The Ashes done and dusted, fans and pundits are already turning their attention to England’s showdown with Pakistan in October.
The series looks all but certain to act as Adil Rashid’s inauguration, with the spin friendly wickets of the UAE dictating the need for more than just Moeen Ali if England are to top Misbah-ul-Haq’s side, who haven’t lost on ‘home soil’ since their relocation in 2010.
Beyond Rashid, England’s spin alternatives are painfully thin though. This isn’t any kind of a secret; spin bowling in England isn’t dead, but it is at the very least on life support. That Moeen Ali, a talented batsman and passable spinner, is England’s first choice twirler says much.
But the decline of spin bowling may not be purely an English one. The game globally lacks the star names of old, much to its detriment.
By his own admittance, the 2015 Ashes series was not Jos Buttler’s best.
But where some of the 24-year old’s team mates came under fire for their runs of poor form, Buttler has been afforded a tremendous amount of good will.
Is it simply a bad run of form early in his Test career? Or are people hoping this young keeper can offer something more than is actually within him?