"If you're not going to have the ability to..." - Michael Vaughan again slams Bazball

Updated - 23 Feb 2024, 07:20 PM

Ollie Pope, Akash Deep and Michael Vaughan
Ollie Pope, Akash Deep and Michael Vaughan (Credits: Instagram)

Former England captain Michael Vaughan has once again hit out at England’s Bazball style of Test cricket, which was invented by former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum and all-rounder Ben Stokes who are coach and captain of the red-ball team. Their first instance of applying the Bazball style in Indian conditions started off decently as they won the 1st Test but then went on to lose the 2nd and 3rd Test matches in Vizag and Rajkot.

The visitors have been particularly criticized for their reluctance to bat for a longer period of time and relying mainly upon their aggressive style which saw them get all out for only 122 runs during their unsuccessful run chase of a mammoth 557. Michael Vaughan claimed that every team in the sport has to change their style at some point and he urged the English team to do the same in order to avoid such 434-run defeats like they suffered in the 3rd Test.

Michael Vaughan claims England are more than just the “swashbuckling” Bazball style

During a recent interaction on Club Prairie Fire’s X (formerly Twitter) handle, Vaughan claimed that England’s swashbuckling aggressive approach wouldn’t always work, that too in tricky tours of India where the hosts are just so dominant. Thus he asked England to take inspiration from other touring teams and try to be flexible enough to change their game plan in different junctures of the game.

“I think this one of way of playing is exciting but there’s no sporting team in the history that have never been able to change style slightly. You can have your intentions to be aggressive to try and whack the ball out of the park.”

“But ultimately, particularly in Test cricket against good teams, if you’re not going to have the ability to change your style at certain times that certain situations takes you, you shouldn’t really be playing that style. I just think they’re gonna keep getting found out. They’re a better team than just playing this swashbuckling style all the time.” – Michael Vaughan said via Club Prairie Fire.

Michael Vaughan urges Bazballers to take inspiration from Australia’s 2004 Test team

The 49-year-old then went on to ask the England Bazballers to draw some inspiration from the Australian team of 2004 under the captaincy of Adam Gilchrist that went back home by winning a 4-match Test series by 2-1. Michael Vaughan mentioned that in the context of describing the importance of staying as long as possible when playing on Indian surfaces.

He also mentioned that if Ben Stokes and co. think they can actually replicate their winning performance in the 1st at Hyderabad where they won by 28 runs week in and week out then it’s absolutely impossible to do.

“Thinking you can do what you did in the 1st Test in Hyderabad week in week out, it’s just not possible. I’m just saying to them, yes I have the aggressive mentality but when it’s not possible or when the situation dictates, you’ve just got to go down the gears to just stay in the game. In India, it’s about staying in the game.” – Vaughan added. 

“Even the great Aussie side that Gilly played in and magnificently captained by Adam Gilchrist in the 1st Test back in 2004. Now the Aussie team back then who did like to have a bit of a pop and play aggressively, went down to the gears just to play attritionally in India to win a series. I think the Bazballers can take a little bit of a leaf out of that book.” – Michael Vaughan concluded.   

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Adam Gilchrist Ben Stokes Brendon McCullum England National Cricket Team IND vs ENG 2024 India National Cricket Team Michael Vaughan