England team selection for second Test ‘nonsense’, says Mark Butcher
Mark Butcher stated”blas??” England’s group selection for the second and last Test against New Zealand has been”just nonsense” after they picked five seamers without a spinner and had Ollie Pope keeping wicket.
England, 1-0 down in the series after their innings thrashing in the opening Test at Mount Maunganui, dropped spinner Jack Leach for quick bowler Chris Woakes, with the latter linking Stuart Broad, Jofra Archer, Ben Stokes and Sam Curran at a speed quintet in Seddon Park at Hamilton.
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Butcher was seething at that decision, in addition to the truth that Pope was forced to take the gloves following Jos Buttler’s knee accident with no keeper from the tourists’ squad.
“Blas??, fast and loose, call it what you like – it is just nonsense,” Sky Cricket specialist and former England batsman Butcher stated after the XI has been revealed.
Watch Butcher’s impassioned phrases in the movie.
“Five seamers? If four quicks aren’t getting 20 wickets to a one that is green then the one is doing nothing anyhow.
“Leach not playing is a nonsense, to me. You have a [at Stokes] so that you can have a attack and you are telling me you cannot get a spinner in that group?
“England aren’t going to have a spinner on this deck so I hope to fine it swings all over location and the match is finished in three days and they don’t want one further down the line.
“Four days is quite a long time in English Test cricket.
“You looked in the last 11 and thought,’that seems sensible, people are batting into their rightful places, doing jobs they’re used to doing’. Four quicks, a spinner, and a keeper free of 7. It all looked ideal.
“Four days after, an accident to Buttler, and someone has dropped a bomb on the whole thing. It looks far as England sides have done over the previous two or three decades – a mix and match”
Surrey batsman Pope had just kept in five first-class matches going into the second Test and Butcher claims he was”annoyed” the 21-year-old had been thrust into the place.
“I really don’t believe I’ve been on a tour where you did not take a reserve keeper,” added Butcher, later Pope dropped a place to No 7 along with Zak Crawley, that opens for Kent, made his debut at No 6.
“I am annoyed, really. I’m annoyed for Pope. Here’s a child who devotes 60-odd in cricket at a time when batters are struggling for runs.
“He makes his introduction [against India in 2018] from position at # 4 – a spot he’d never batted earlier – and he is being requested to keep wicket if he hasn’t kept wicket for Surrey for years.
“He’s batting , batting , where is he?
“England have been accused before of being fast and loose with the norms of the game, filling the side by all-rounders and saying’we’re likely to get it done in a way that has never been done before’. It did not work out also ”
See England’s second Test in New Zealand live on Sky Sports Cricket.