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Cricket legend slams Bazball! 'They've gone too far'

Source: PTI
April 06, 2024 18:02 IST
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Bazball is fine, but England Test team needs common sense: Geoffery Boycott

Ben Stokes

IMAGE: England's Ben Stokes with Joe Root and Ollie Pope. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Batting legend Geoffrey Boycott on Saturday reiterated his aversion for England's ‘Bazball' way of cricket, and exhorted the coaching staff to instill a dose of “common sense” to their methods.

The root of Boycott's criticism was England's failure to emerge winners in two most important series -- in the Ashes against Australia in 2023 and in the series against India earlier this year.

“There are some amazing decisions under Brendon McCullum (England Test head coach), as he has changed the (team's) mindset into more positive. But they have gone a bit too far with it.


“They want to save England cricket, the whole of Test cricket. But no Sir, the objective is to win a Test match or series,” said Boycott here during the cricket talk show, Midwicket Stories, which also featured batting legend Sunil Gavaskar and former New Zealand pacer Simon Doull.

Boycott said the England team should learn to respect opposition players and conditions.

“We lost two Ashes Tests and with it the series, playing stupid cricket, and the same happened against India. They came to the series saying we have done practice in Abu Dhabi and all. But Players like (Ravichandran) Ashwin, (Ravindra) Jadeja and Kuldeep (Yadav) got their wickets not without talent."

“Heavens! Those three have some 900 wickets among them in Tests. And we have a captain (Ben Stokes) who does not bowl. So, play with aggression, which is fair, but have that bit of common sense too,” said Boycott.

The Yorkshire great, who made 8112 runs at an average of 47.72 with 22 hundreds as opener, also derided England's obsession with veteran pacer James Anderson, who recently completed 700 Test wickets.

“To be fair to Jimmy, he was a great bowler, I mean he is still good. But he is not what he used to be as a bowler. When was the last time he bowled 20 overs or more in an innings, he bowled 12 or 14 overs per innings, and that puts pressure on other bowlers,” noted Boycott.

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