Cricket column: The Gloves are off!

Chris Glover
Chris Glover

Kimberley Institute’s Chris Glover on the local and national cricket scene

That’s right, the summer is finally here! Well OK then, maybe not wall-to-wall sunshine, but it looks as though we are finally going to get some weather that is set fair for a period of time, which means for me, the cricket season starts in earnest.

The early weeks of a season are always a funny time of year. It can be tricky to build up any momentum as the training schedule and early fixtures are interrupted by inclement conditions.

At Kimberley, the winter has seen us continue the process of building a side which we hope can start to challenge for honours over the coming seasons.

We are fully aware that the method we are using may take us time to fulfil the potential we think we have. However, this must not be an excuse for the fact that we have not yet in the league managed to put together an all round performance.

Anyone who knows Nottinghamshire cricket will know the Premier League is an unforgiving place when you make too many errors. So we will continue to work hard to get the detail right. It’s this approach of focusing on getting the smaller details right which should help us put together stronger performances over the coming weeks.

In the week after an historic and unexpected election result, you’d expect the headlines to be full of news of David Cameron fine tuning his new cabinet.

Yet there is an enigmatic maverick who has been stealing the headlines once again (and I am not talking about Boris Johnson). Kevin Pietersen has once again split English cricket down the middle. Even within our changing room this week I have seen keen supporters of ‘KP’ arguing passionately with those who were happy to see the back of him. He is very much a marmite character.

However, this is all a real distraction from the serious business of how best to organise the governance of the national cricket team. The problem over the last two years, especially since the Ashes whitewash, has been who is accountable for the performance of the England set-up.

In my opinion, the new role of Andrew Strauss must be all empowering. It should be he who chooses the coach, the captain and the squad for each match. From here, he can select a squad which gives the coach and captain the flexibility to use whichever blend they want.

It’s a naive view that players don’t need technical coaching at international level (a criticism levelled at Peter Moores). They still need the environment from which to practice, develop and improve.

However, they do need to be able to hone their skills in different environments, and I would like to see more of our top players encouraged where possible to play in tournaments such as the IPL and the Big Bash.

There are some really talented players in the English game, but it is only when this happens that it will be possible to really start to change the brand and style of cricket that England play, something people have been asking for now for a while.