Brendon McCullum hates Bazball, we try to stay away from it - Ben Stokes' sensational statement

Updated - 25 Jan 2024, 03:03 PM

Ben Stokes, Brendon McCullum
PC: X/Twitter

England captain Ben Stokes opened up about the media-generated buzz surrounding the team’s aggressive approach in Test cricket, often referred to as ‘Bazball.’ Ben Stokes revealed that England Test team head coach Brendon McCullum is not fond of the Bazball term.

The England team has adopted a fearless approach in red-ball cricket since Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum took on leadership roles in 2022. It’s worth mentioning that the team had won only one of 17 Tests before McCullum assumed charge of the Test team.

Under the leadership of Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum, England secured 13 victories out of 18 Tests. England whitewashed Pakistan 3-0 and leveled the series against New Zealand in away conditions. They drew the Ashes series against Australia at home last year.

Brendon McCullum Hates It – Ben Stokes

In a conversation with JioCinema, Ben Stokes addressed the media-coined term ‘Bazball,’ emphasizing that the team actively avoids using it. Stokes revealed that they prefer to describe it simply as the way the England team approaches Test match cricket.

“Bazball. It’s a phrase that got created in the media. It’s something that we try and stay away from. Baz hates it. Whenever that word pops up, we just try and say that’s how the England team plays its Test match cricket,” Stokes told JioCinema.

The ongoing series in India is considered a crucial test for England’s Bazball approach, given the historical struggles of visiting teams in India. The Men in Blue have maintained an unbeaten record in their last 16 Test series at home since the defeat to England in 2012-13.

The Word Bazball Isn’t Understood Well – Dinesh Karthik

Veteran Indian wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik emphasized that England’s Bazball approach goes beyond just applying pressure through aggressive cricket. Karthik highlighted the importance of using their strengths to make an impact when the situation is favorable.

“Actually I feel that the word Bazball isn’t understood well. It doesn’t mean applying pressure. It is actually about trying to be the best version of yourself. It basically means, at times when you have to absorb pressure, be courageous enough to do it and do it your way. That is the messaging that is going around. It is not about scoring runs at 6 or 7 runs an over,” said Karthik.

“It means if you sense that the opponent isn’t there in the game, then go for it but if they are on top and doing a good job, then try and see the best defensive version of yourself using the game you have. Don’t try to surrender trying to do something you are not good at. But be very confident of what you can do in those situations with your game. With the ball it is all about constantly trying ways to get wickets,” he added.

Openers Ben Duckett and Zak Crawley provided a solid start, adding 55 runs. However, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja ran through the top order, restricting them to 60/3. The team lost six wickets for just 150 runs on the opening day of the series opener.

Also read: England cricket fans stunned Ben Stokes provides massive update on his availability in the Test series vs India

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Ben Stokes Brendon McCullum England National Cricket Team IND vs ENG 2024 India National Cricket Team