The cricketing headlines in the last few days has been dominated by the news of Pakistan's players being involved in spot-fixing. The just concluded test series itself is under a cloud thanks to fixing allegations! It has no doubt hurt the feelings of all those who watched, or followed the series keenly, but at the same-time, let us not forget that Trott and Broad came up with a great partnership in the last test. In the bowling department, Swann and Anderson bowled some fine spells in the series. Yes, the recent allegations would take some gloss away from all those individual feats by the players, but the knock played by Trott in difficult conditions was one of the better knocks I have seen in recent times and I do hope against hope that people would remember the great knock.
Yes, Pakistan's bowlers likely bowled those no balls deliberately, but Asif and Ameer bowled reasonably well on the second day and more importantly, it wasn't easy to score runs on the second day as it was seaming as well as swinging around. Trott though, played an exemplary knock to help England recover from doldrums. I really like the calmness that Trott exhibits in his batting. When in form, he seems to have the nerves of steel and can get big scores. Trott also showed very good technique as he played late and in the end, forced Asif to change his line as he tried to attack the stumps.
The major worry with Trott is, he can lose his form very quickly by getting a string of low scores. When he isn't in form like we saw in South Africa, his back-foot shuffles across too much and he closes the option of scoring runs on the off-side.
I just hope that Trott would start the tour of Australia with a few runs under his belt in the warm up matches which would help his confidence going into the Ashes. In fact, I think Trott's form is crucial to England's chances in the Ashes as he occupies the crucial number three slot, unlike others, is in good form and once he gets in, he usually gets a big score.
The recent series against Pakistan has also made people sit up and take notice of the fact that England's batting seems to be the main problem especially, it is sad to see a player like KP struggling for form. One thing in KP's favour is, Australian pitches should suit his batting as he likes to play on the rise and that was the likely reason behind his success last time around against McGrath, Warne and co. in Australia. Yes, Australia have couple of left armers and KP has struggled against left arm quicks, but neither of them swing it like Ameer and the conditions in Australia are different.
On the spot-fixing front, I see that there is a speculation about ICC having told PCB to drop the tainted players, though PCB have said, they are not going to drop the players as they are just allegations and it isn't proved. If the one-day series has to be played, I think those players have to be dropped as neither the England team, or the spectators would like to see a match in which players, who are facing fixing allegations playing in the X1. If they are ever proved to be innocent, they can comeback, but in my opinion, at present they should be suspended pending an investigation.