The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) recently announced their Men’s Test squad for the upcoming tour of India in January. The squad includes the return of experienced wicketkeeper-batter Ben Foakes to the red-ball format.
Adding a layer of excitement, the uncapped trio of Shoaib Bashir, Tom Hartley, and Gus Atkinson have earned their spots, promising a fresh dynamic to the English lineup. Ben Stokes continues his role as the captain, providing leadership to the English side.
Michael Vaughan’s warning on Bazball
Former England captain Michael Vaughan has voiced significant concerns regarding England’s unique ‘Bazball’ approach, a strategy inspired by head coach Brendon McCullum. This tactic has been the talk of the cricketing world for the past couple of years or so. However, Vaughan questioned its effectiveness, especially when facing India’s formidable spin attack, which boasts the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, and Axar Patel.
Vaughan drew attention to the success of Australian spinner Nathan Lyon on English soil before his unfortunate calf injury during the Ashes series. Lyon’s impactful performance, securing nine wickets at an average of 29.33 in conditions traditionally considered unfavorable for spinners, serves as a reference point. Vaughan emphasized that India presents the most challenging conditions for cricket.
Also READ: Ben Foakes returns as England unveil their squad for the Test tour of India
“Ultimately the hardest place to play in the world is India and if you actually go back to the Ashes when Nathan Lyon was fit and bowling nicely, Australia were 2-0 up in the series. That was just one innings and a few overs in the first innings at Lords… Nathan came out with a lovely line the other week where he said he’s 2-nil up against Bazball,” said Vaughan as quoted by Foxsports.
Tough challenge for England in India
Expressing skepticism about England’s tactics against quality spinners on spinning wickets in India, Vaughan stated that It’s going to be challenging for the English team to win in India. With the trio of Ashwin, Jadeja, and Axar, Vaughan anticipated that England might face formidable challenges similar to those experienced against Lyon in English conditions.
“If you add in Ashwin, Jadeja and Axar Patel on spinning wickets in India, they may get blown away, they may get absolutely destroyed. They will go out and play exactly the same way, we’ve already spoken about the impact they are going to try and achieve in India with the way they play. It will be great watching, but you will have to fancy three quality spinners might do a job on England when one quality spinner in Nathan Lyon did the job in English conditions. It’s going to be very tough for them to win in India,” added Vaughan.