Without wanting to ruin my end of season appraisal coming up, presumably in 6 weeks or so, I think Rory Hamilton-Brown has made a decent fist of his first season as Surrey captain. He's moulded a rag-tag bunch of lads into a team, and a team that wins an awful lot more than its predecessors. If Steven Cheetham, the recent loan signing is to be believed, it seems there's a pretty good team spirit, witness his Twitter feed here.
But, and its a pretty big but, he hasn't scored the runs he should've done in the County Championship - the competition that is still, to my mind, the pinnacle. The two hundreds he's clocked up in the County Championship have been impressive and his limited overs form has been good by and large, but there's a feeling he isn't so adept at knuckling down and playing out a big innings when needed most.
Of course he's still only 22 and that sort of thing will hopefully come in time, but some numbers I've looked into back up that feeling. In innings where Surrey have scored 300 or less, Hamilton-Brown's average is 14, contrast this with another winter signing, Steve Davies, whose average in such innings is 33 (better still than Ramps, whose average is 32). In innings where Surrey have racked up 300+ the skipper's average shoots up to 49.
In fact, the average total of the innings where RHB has scored his three first class hundreds to date is 520 runs. Lets not pay too much attention to that, three isn't really a representative sample!
I don't doubt that Hamilton-Brown will go on to become a very fine player for Surrey, and he'll score a lot of runs for us. But I think if he is to win over those doubters, and the message boards seem to indicate there's still a fair few of them, he needs to score ugly runs in situations where the team needs a boost. His strokeplay when he's in full flight is something to behold, but a 50 off 200 balls when Surrey are on the rack would be something to behold too!
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