India and England’s five-match series is now levelled at 1-1.
Former Australia cricketer Ian Chappell praised England captain Ben Stokes for leading the team during the first two Test matches of the five-match series against India, citing his aggressive style and demeanor as key factors in the team’s success and instilling a lot of confidence in the younger players. According to Chappell, Stokes’ guidance has ensured that the five-match series between the two rivals remains open and tied at 1-1. Chappell praised England’s strategy of persistently searching for wickets and noted that England’s strong faith in Stokes is evident both on and off the field.
“Despite the fact that Ben Stokes’ aggressive style of leadership was not enough to win the second Test against India, the five-match series remains evenly balanced at one point. Bazball, or the drive to score goals fast and strategically startle the opposition, has been blamed for much of England’s success, however this is an inaccurate assessment. “What Stokes has really done is really set out to win from the first ball by playing aggressive cricket in every facet of the game,” Chappell said in news sources.
Stokes’s aggressive tactics have greatly aided England’s win column success. It was a really wise move on his part to take such an aggressive approach. England was a very slow country to embrace this strategy, but Stokes has proven to be a capable and determined leader,” he continued.
Also, he stated that Stokes’ leadership has instilled confidence in the team, enabling them to generate extra output and achieve some crucial victories on the field. One such instance was Stokes’ game-changing run-out of Ravindra Jadeja, which turned the tide of the match in England’s favor and forced India to lose by 28 runs.
“Both on and off the field, the England team’s strong faith in Stokes is evident. The bowlers take this challenge and help the side take wickets because they are always searching for them. The best players are enthused by this technique, and they are the ones who have the most chance of influencing the outcome,” Chappell said.
“The group also thinks that Stokes’ aggressiveness will enable them to pull off the strange but unexpected victory. This mindset is usually what propels a team to generate an extra effort that results in a crucial wicket. At a pivotal moment in Hyderabad, Stokes’s fielding prowess enabled him to create a run-out, which also bolstered team morale,” he continued.
According to Chappell, Stokes’ approach has given young people like Tom Hartley, Rehan Ahmed, and Shoaib Bashir confidence and success. A limited Jack Leach should be rendered “redundant” by Hartley’s 14 runs with the ball and vital 114 runs in four innings at bat, according to the former cricket player.
“The younger players’ self-belief has increased thanks to Stokes’ approach, and their bowling performances reflect this. The confidence that Stokes’ approach instills is exemplified by the success of young players such as Tom Hartley, Rehan Ahmed, and Shoaib Bashir, according to Chappell.
“Jack Leach’s limited effectiveness should become obsolete in the Test team due to Hartley’s performance with the bat and the ball. England’s spin department has always been a weakness, but with Stokes’ upbeat attitude, slow bowling suddenly has a lot of contenders,” he continued.
In addition, Chappell said that Harry Brook’s ascent in the middle order and Ollie Pope’s success at number three had strengthened England’s batting and demanded that they select their best teams going forward. He also took aim at England for not always selecting their best wicketkeeper and for not appreciating the value of having an additional pacer available.
“Harry Brook’s rise to prominence as a middle-order batsman and Ollie Pope’s success at No. 3 suggest that the batting could be considerably stronger.” Due to these notable gains in talent, England should be able to choose the best side for the given circumstances going forward. Not selecting their best wicketkeeper and frequently undervaluing more pace are two historical mistakes made by England. This should be history, save from injuries sustained by quick bowlers,” he declared.
Chappell stated that Stokes is “one of the best” in the slips when he fields, and that England would gain from him being able to play all-round cricket full-time. It was suggested by the former cricket player that England should use fewer bouncers to provide a “element of surprise”.
“If Stokes can return to being an all-rounder, it will be a huge benefit to England because his bowling is a unique weapon. He is one of the greatest in that position, so it would also benefit if he fielded in the slips, especially to the spinners,” Chappell added.
England might also do better when it comes to using bouncers. It’s a frequently overdone tactic, and the element of surprise is the bouncer’s greatest asset, he continued.
Additionally, Chappell suggested that Stokes examine his batting and take more initiative.
Stokes may want to examine his own batting technique. His play would be better at the beginning of each innings if he took more initiative. Although Stokes is an excellent batter, Chappell felt that he performs best when he is trying to score.
While KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja are back from injuries, Chappell noted that Indian captain Rohit Sharma is a “good leader” and that this will help the squad. However, he also stated that the squad is suffering because of the absence of star batsman Virat Kohli for personal reasons.
The former cricket player also advised Indian selectors to value spinner Kuldeep Yadav and to quit undervaluing Shreyas Iyer’s batting.
“India has good leadership in Rohit Sharma and is a formidable force. While KL Rahul’s and Ravindra Jadeja’s injury recoveries would help them immensely, it is a blow that Virat Kohli will miss the remainder of the series. The selectors should now learn to appreciate Kuldeep Yadav’s ability to take wickets more and stop undervaluing Shreyas Iyer’s batting prowess, according to Chappell.
According to Chappell, the current England team appears far superior than the Joe Root-led team that traveled to India in 2021 and was thoroughly outclassed by Indian spinners.
India has a genuine battle ahead of them, but they should eventually prevail in a difficult series. Chappell stated, “England, led by the combative Stokes, is a far cry from the badly managed Joe Root team who gave up to spin on their last tour to the nation.
“This India versus England contest is shaping up as it should: a tough five-match encounter between two talented sides,” he stated.