'England’s batting collapses will be the main issue from this tour', says Hussain after 4-1 series loss to India

March 10, 2024
Following England’s 4-1 Test series loss to India, former captain Nasser Hussain has pointed out that the visitors’

New Delhi, March 10 (IANS) Following England’s 4-1 Test series loss to India, former captain Nasser Hussain has pointed out that the visitors’ batting collapses on the tour will be the main issue which the team think-tank needs to solve.

England had won the series opener in Hyderabad by 28 runs, but after that, batting collapses of 6-68 in Visakhapatnam, 8-95 in Rajkot, 7-35 in Ranchi, and 9-118 in Dharamshala ensured the Ben Stokes-led side couldn’t win the series against a dominating Indian team.

“The batting collapses will be the main issue from this tour. There have been so many occasions where they have got off to decent starts and the middle order has then collapsed. It can happen in India but the pitches in this series have been brilliant so England can have no complaints about that.

“Plus, they won three tosses out of five. They will look at those collapses and say, ‘what could we have done differently in those positions to make sure it doesn’t happen again?’ because it did happen again,” said Hussain on Sky Sports after the end of fifth and final Test at Dharamshala, where England lost by an innings and 64 runs.

He also urged England to get better in individual performances and not focus on the Bazball strategy, citing how Indian spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Kuldeep Yadav have made improvements. “There is too much said and written about Bazball. We get lost in that term and the team do not like it. It is about individual performances in those conditions.

“The reason James Anderson, who took his 700th wicket in the Test, and Ravichandran Ashwin, who took nine wickets in his 100th Test, have ended up greats of the game is because they are constantly trying to improve. After a poor Ashes series, Jimmy wanted to increase his run-up speed going into the crease, feeling he needed a bit more zip at the age of 41.

“Ashwin is learning all the time, about seam positions and how to deliver the ball. You also look at Version Two of India spinner Kuldeep Yadav. That is so much better than Version One because he has tried to improve.

“Try to learn why you collapsed. Why does Zak Crawley keep getting starts and then getting out? Does Ben Duckett need to charge the bowler when the ball is so new and spinning? Ollie Pope – a brilliant 196, then nothing else. Look at your own game and improve. That is how you get better as players and better as a team.”

Hussain signed off by saying Anderson reaching 700 Test wickets is a ‘phenomenal’ achievement and Shane Warne’s tally of 708 wickets will be now in his sights to surpass. “There will be fast bowlers in club cricket, professional cricket that will be looking at Anderson in unbelievable admiration.

“If you have ever seen a fast bowler take his boots off in the corner of a dressing room and seen blood seeping through their socks, you will realise what a fast bowler goes through in international cricket. Fitness, skill, longevity. The skill of Jimmy Anderson is unbelievable and the great Shane Warne, with 708 Test wickets, will be the next man in his sights.”

–IANS/nr/bc

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