March 20, 2011

ICC World Cup 2011

Trott uses brains, not brawn

Tariq Engineer

Crowds may love the thrill of a six, but it takes more than biffing to build an innings. In the long run, Duncan Fletcher, writes in the Guardian, it is more effective to assess the pitch and the situation and take those pesky ones and twos.

A batsman who hits a six may impress the fans, but if that is all he scores in an over then a lot of bowlers will be happy to let him have it, reckoning that if he tries to clear the ropes again they will have a good chance of getting him out. By taking ones and twos when he can, Trott is keeping the bowler under pressure, chipping away at the run rate. It is conspicuous that England's two most successful batsmen in this tournament have been Trott and Strauss, neither of them prolific six-hitters, but both of them intelligent cricketers.

In the same newspaper Vic Marks writes that now that England have expended all that effort in qualifying for the quarter-finals, they may as well try to win the World Cup.

Whoever are England's opponents they will rationalise that they have a good draw. England, denuded of two genuine match-winners, Kevin Pietersen and Broad, do not have many players in form. The bowlers terrify no one, nor do their batsmen. And yet there will be a nagging feeling as well. For all their frailties this England side does not appear to know when it is beaten.

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Tariq Engineer is a former senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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