England’s ‘Bazzball’ approach under the stewardship of coach Brandon McCullum, and skipper Ben Stokes has left the world in awe of the way the Three Lions have been playing red-ball cricket.
Their attacking intent was on full display as the Three Lions declared at a below-par total, on a flat surface allowing Pakistan back into the contest before beating Babar Azam’s side by 74 runs in the first Test in Rawalpindi on Monday.
The bold move from Stokes to declare with four sessions left to play was hailed by Michael Vaughan, however, the former England bowler was given a brutal reminder by Indian fans that Stokes wasn’t the only captain who played for a win or loss, and not simply to draw a Test match.
After hitting 657 runs in the first innings, Stokes declared after seeing his side record 264 runs, even after Pakistan themselves had smashed 579 runs in their first innings, needing 343 runs to win the Test.
In the end they proved a tad bit short, getting dismissed for 268 runs, thus prompting a bold tweet from Vaughan.
The former England skipper tweeted, “One of the GREAT test wins .. I don’t know of any Captain in the history of Test cricket that would have got his team to Bat like his team did and then declare when he did .. unbelievable .. #PAKvENG.”
Clearly, Indian fans weren’t having any of it as they reminded Vaughan how Virat Kohli was the first player to have this ‘all in or nothing’ approach in red-ball cricket.
Check how fans reacted to Michael Vaughan’s tweet:
LOL India destroyed England at Lord’s last year within 60 overs
— Subham Daz (@daz_subham) December 5, 2022
It’s not the best games like Gabba 2021, special win against world class Australian pace bowlers
— (@sasi4395) December 5, 2022
The declaration was a testimony to the statement that Root made back in 2020. Need more characters like Kohli,Stokes,Cummins to take test cricket forward. The cowardly nature of PCB will destroy test cricket in Pakistan. pic.twitter.com/POH6ntbUR8
— shaam tak khelenge (@beatenforpace) December 5, 2022
I guess your memory is weak! But never mind, let me remind you. Virat Kohli did the same thing last year against England and that too in England.
— Niks shah (@Nikhils37277546) December 5, 2022
In the end, despite Pakistan’s resilience, England’s smash-and-bang approach weighed a bit too heavy on a flat track. The Three Lions have completely transformed the way red-ball cricket is being played, and it could be a template for other teams to follow as well.