South Africa in England 2022

South Africa in England 2022

Ben Stokes says he is “happy” that South African captain Dean Elgar and his team are still talking about “Bazball” and vowed to stay true to the new style established under his tenure.

The last month has been marked by several Proteas members talking about England’s new attacking approach to Test cricket ahead of the upcoming three-match men’s series which kicks off at Lord’s on Wednesday. While it’s all isolated in various media engagements, it has created a feeling that tourists find talk of a “revolutionary” approach a bit grating. speaking to Wisden Cricket MonthlyElgar stated that he saw “no longevity in gutsy cricket” and said that England might have had “eggs on their faces” in the opening Test match against New Zealand.

Elgar is certainly not alone in that opinion, and tourists are no doubt eager to skewer a bubble that has been swelling after four wins against New Zealand (three) and India. So far no one associated with this England test team has engaged in such comments publicly, and it’s also worth noting that “Bazball” is not a term used internally. Even the man named after him is not a fanatic.

Speaking Tuesday, Stokes said neither he nor his team is paying too much attention to the noise emanating from the locker room down the hall.

“The opposition seems to be talking a lot right now about it,” Stokes said. “We don’t really talk about it much. We just focus on what we do. We have a style of play, they have a style of play.”

“At the end of the day, it’s bat versus ball; whoever plays better in a Test match is more likely to win. But we didn’t dive too deep into it, but we’re happy for Dean and the South African team.” keep saying they’re not interested, but also keep talking about it.

Elgar, for his part, insisted on the eve of the Test that he had said all there was to be said about England’s perceived style of play. “With all due respect, I’m really not going to consider that anymore,” he added. “We’ve had a lot of talk about it. I just want to get on with cricket. I think the game deserves that respect. Libel is a thing of the past for me and we’re not going to go back and forth about it.” .”

Stokes also announced his XI, with Ben Foakes replacing Sam Billings as the only change in the squad that secured a 2-2 draw against India at Edgbaston last month, in the delayed fifth Test of a series that began in 2021. The team met Sunday, with Stokes and head coach Brendon McCullum making sure to remind the players of how well they performed at the start of the season and the need to carry forward the values ​​established by the pair. For a team that had been in such disarray before the start of the season, it’s something Stokes realizes needs constant reinforcement.

“I think for me it was just reiterating the points of what we were doing at the beginning of the summer, about our mentality, attitude and all that, about how we go out and play our cricket,” said Stokes, when asked about his work beyond of the networks. “Personally, I feel like it’s one of those most important things right now for this team, is to believe what we talk about in the locker room and go out there and try to deliver on what we say. Because the results will come after themselves.

“If we play at the level we’ve done in the last four test matches, we know we’re going to give ourselves a great chance to win the game. If you don’t play cricket well, you’re going to lose.” the game. For us it’s just going out and continuing with the attitude and mentality that you’ve seen in the first four games of the summer.”

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