‘I feel it’s overhyped’: Former India captain slams England’s ‘Bazball’ tactics | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Known for his aggressive batting style, former India captain Krishnamachari Srikkanth has strongly criticised England‘s ‘Bazball’ tactics in Tests, led by head coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Ben Stokes.
Despite winning the first Test, England find themselves trailing 1-2 in the five-match series against India.
Srikkanth, not mincing his words, has dismissed any hopes of England making a comeback after their comprehensive defeat in the third Test in Rajkot. England’s strategy, characterised by an aggressive approach dubbed Bazball, has come under scrutiny, especially following the 434-run loss in the latest match.
Having advocated for a bold and aggressive style of batting during his playing days when a more conservative approach was the norm, Srikkanth mocked the ‘Bazball’ strategy as “overhyped.” In a somewhat tongue-in-cheek manner, he even suggested that England might want to consider catching the next flight home to avoid further embarrassment.
Srikkanth expressed skepticism about the efficacy of such tactics on Indian pitches, emphasising the importance of skill and talent to succeed in challenging conditions.
Despite England’s initial success in Hyderabad, their subsequent defeats have raised doubts about the suitability of the Bazball approach against a formidable Indian team.
“If possible, they can catch the next flight home. But, they have to play the remaining two Tests. I think this ‘Bazball’ and all that are theories that they propagated. Where has it worked? Did it work in the Ashes? Frankly speaking, no strategy can work if they continue playing like this. There was so much hype about this ‘Bazball’ theory. To back up all that talk, I think they needed the skill to bat in these conditions. You need the talent to bowl,” said Srikkanth on his YouTube channel.
Despite England’s commendable record of winning 14 out of 21 Tests, which include notable victories against teams like New Zealand and South Africa at home, as well as a 3-0 whitewash of Pakistan in Pakistan, Srikkanth remains skeptical about the sustainability of coach McCullum’s ‘Bazball’ philosophy.
While acknowledging individual successes, such as Zak Crawley and Ben Duckett, under the Bazball approach, the 1983 World Cup winner raised concerns about its long-term viability.
Srikkanth questioned whether the aggressive batting style could consistently deliver positive results over an extended period, expressing reservations about its effectiveness in various conditions and against different opponents.
“I don’t think it (Bazball) will work in the long run. Just go there and try and hit every ball…I think Brendon McCullum can bat like that, Ben Stokes can bat like that. Not everybody can do that successfully. Sometimes, you need to adapt. I feel it’s overhyped. That’s my feeling. I may be wrong,” said Srikkanth.
Srikkanth’s critique arrives at a crucial moment for England, as their chances of turning the series around hinge on the upcoming Test in Ranchi scheduled to begin on Friday.
The former India captain’s reservations about England’s ‘Bazball’ tactics add an additional layer of scrutiny to the team’s approach as they aim to level the series against a strong Indian side.
(With IANS inputs)




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