Player Ratings for the Sri Lanka Series.
England wrapped up a 2-0 series win making it their 5th overseas win in a row and their 4th series win in a row. So how did the players fair?
Crawley had a poor series. The reasons behind this are understandable, first tour in the subcontinent, opening the batting and his first innings set the tone for him when he, arguably, unnecessarily charged down the pitch and didn’t commit to the shot. Crawley didn’t impact the games with the bat and he will be hoping to right his wrongs in India. His fielding at short leg on day 4 of the 2nd test is where a majority of his rating comes from.
Sibley was on a similar path to Crawley until his final innings. Struggling against Embuldeniya he made some technical adjustments and looked far more composed and lead Englands chase in the final match. A goof 56* meant Sibley ended the series on a high note and his use of the sweep shows he’s not a one trick pony.
I understand this may feel a bit low for Bairstow but each players score is relative. With a player like Johnny you would expect him to come in and do better than he has. 47, in the first test was ok but he failed to go on and make it count. Bairstow did see England home after they where in a spot of bother in the first test but in the 2nd he didn’t really do much. His first innings knock was poor and he didn’t look overly comfortable against the fit Sri Lankan spinners. Overall a middling performance but his failure to really make an impact knocks him down a touch.
If this was the first test alone it would’ve been an 8 but Lawrence, oddly, struggled in the 2nd on what was undoubtedly a better batting track. His 73 in the first test was a superb knock, and steering England home to victory with Bairstow was about as good an introduction to test cricket as you can get. The Essex man had a good tour and has shown what he’s truly about.
This may seem a tad high for Jos but, his keeping was top standard throughout the test, twice he formed solid partnerships with Root and didn’t expose the tail, he saw England home to win the series and was successful in his DRS review. Overall a good series for Buttler who enjoys the conditions and has proven the doubters of his wrong in terms of his keeping.
I mean he didn’t really make things happen. Curran chipped in with a few wickets and hit a monster 6 and that was about it. He wasn’t good, yet he wasn’t bad. Curran was average and so he gets a 5.
As with Johnny this may seem harsh when you consider Bess’ numbers but i think it’s the perfect score. When Bess bowled his best he looked a genuinely good off spinner, the problem was he wasn’t consistent. His best ball was often the supporting act to a long hop or drag down. Bess bowled well in spells and picked up wickets. India will be a different kettle of fish but for now let us appreciate Bess’ improvements. He was also handy with the bat.
Leach ws close to a 6.5 or even a 6 but i felt a 7 made more sense. Undoubtedly the better of the 2 spinners in the first test Leach collected his 2nd five wicket haul and looked better than he hs been for England. With a bit more snap and fizz in his action he looked impressive. Then the signs of having only played 2 first class games in over a year showed in the 2nd test as he started to tail a bit and was worked over by Angelo Matthews. However Leach is now Englands all time leading wicket taker in Sri Lanka and should hopefully be raring to go in India.
Wood was an unappreciated hero of the tour. Wicketless in the first test despite bowling very well, and then a long 8 over spell of hostile and intelligent fast bowling in the 2nd in which his reverse swing picked him up a few wickets, Wood had a good tour. Woods dismissal in the 2nd test will give food for thought as he needed to partner Root but instead went for a big slog sweep. But Wood is here to bowl fast and bowl fast he did.
Broad and Anderson 9/10:
I’m grouping these two together as we all know how good they where and giving them this rating shouldn’t cause any controversy. Broad was immaculate in his line and length and Anderson was relentless on a very flat track and reaped the rewards. The old folks home showed they can still waltz and tango no matter the music.
Ten tests in a row now without defeat for Joe Root; England are building something special so let us sit back and admire what lies ahead.