'England's approach won't be defensive' - Mark Wood issues fresh warning to India

Updated - 23 Jan 2024, 10:01 PM

Mark Wood on England's World Cup loss
Mark Wood on England's World Cup loss [PC: X/Twitter]

England are all set to take on India in the 5-match Test series from January 25 at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. England are the only team, who have defeated India in a Test series in India in the last 12 years. However, their last tours of India have not been promising as they faced humiliating defeats in both series.

The Indian team, on the other hand, will be favourites to win the series, due to their lethal spin attack and also England’s struggle to play against spin. India have been magnificent in the last few years of international cricket and have proved to be one of the best teams in the modern-day era.

England would be aiming to repeat their 2012 performance in India and win the series. England have been brilliant under the leadership of Ben Stokes as he is yet to lose a Test series. England pacer Mark Wood while speaking in the press conference ahead of the first IND vs ENG Test match, opened up about his team’s approach.

England have been playing Test cricket with a ‘bazball’ approach, ever since former New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum became the head coach of the Test side. ‘Baz’ is the nickname of McCullum, who used to destroy the opposition bowlers with his aggressive and attacking batting. England have been playing Test cricket the same way these days and have brought a lot of entertainment in the red ball format.

Mark Wood stated that England will not play with a defensive approach and will look to attack from Day 1. Wood stated that England will aim to take the game on and always take positive options. Wood added that the team will be willing to soak up that pressure when the Indian batsmen are on top and put the pressure back on the Indian team.

Mark Wood on England’s plans for the first Test against India

Mark Wood said, “I don’t think it’ll be defensive,” the fast bowler said of England’s approach. “We’ll still look to take the game on and take the positive option. I think at times it’s being smart… for example if India are bowling well, that may be a chance to just ‘let’s consolidate and sit in’ and then when the chance comes to put the pressure back on, that’s when we put the pressure back on. It’s not just gung-ho all the time.”

“It’s, I guess, soaking up that pressure when needed… might be when the Indian batsmen are on top, we’ve to soak up that pressure, try and create bit of a , I guess, theatre, drama and a bit of consistency on the field and when it’s time to attack again, attack full out. And that’s the same with both bat and ball.”

Mark Wood further spoke on bowling bouncers in the first Test. Wood further acknowledged Rohit Sharma’s quality of playing the short ball well, but stated it doesn’t mean that he will not bowl a short ball to him.

Mark Wood said, “I think we assess conditions when you’re out there. Bouncer might be one that you bowl very rarely or maybe one that you bowl a lot. But I think I wouldn’t know that until I’ve bowled the first ball on the pitch, if I’m picked. When I bowl that bouncer, if the pitch is going to be two-paced, that sometimes can help.”

“If it’s slow again that can help sometimes’ the batsman can be through with that. Someone like Rohit, I know how good he is on the short ball. But that doesn’t necessarily mean I won’t bowl a bouncer, it just means I have to be really accurate with it and bowl it at the right time.”

The IND vs ENG Test series is also very important from the World Test Championship point of view and both the teams will be aiming to add necessary points on the board.

 

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