Thursday 5 March 2009

Inside Harmi's bubble

'Andy Flower told me I was being left out because I wasn't bowling quick enough nor was I hostile enough for what they wanted. I was bitterly disappointed. It was not the right time to take it up with Andrew Strauss, but when we get to Trinidad I want to sit down with him over a beer or over a meal and see where we stand'.

What part of 'you're not bowling quick enough, or hostile enough' does Steve Harmison not understand, then? It is, after all,  one of the more direct pieces of criticism - sorry, feedback - a fast bowler can be given. And has it not yet struck him as odd that, even when he's in the team, he doesn't usually get the new ball? Does he not wonder, when he throws up after a couple of overs because it's hot, how fit he actually is?

Perhaps he can ask one of England's many analysts to help him read between the lines of Andy Flower's other comments: 'Fast bowling is long, hard work and at the age of 30 it is only going to get harder work, so it is up to Steve really. If hard work is just a base that you start with, then that is what he's doing at the moment, but for you to be a successful international cricketer you have to be very hungry. Only he knows how hungry he is to carry on the hard yakka of a fast bowler's life'.

Inside the Harmi bubble, a 'beer' or a 'meal' with Andrew Strauss might bring understanding. The rest of us have already heard it loud and clear, Steve.

NB: Andy Flower, laying it down in plain English. Refreshing. 

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