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India Vs England: ‘Problem England will have…’: Alastair Cook raises concerns ahead of India Tests | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Former England captain Alastair Cook has expressed worries about England’s “lack of match preparation” as they gear up for the grueling five-Test series against India.
In his column for ‘The Sunday Times,’ Cook voiced his concerns, citing the absence of sufficient warm-up games, a situation that could pose a challenge for the visiting team.
Reflecting on England’s victorious tour of India in 2012-13, where they played three warm-up matches against formidable opponents, Cook emphasized the importance of such practice games for a team’s readiness. He suggested the need for an unwritten agreement among cricketing nations to organize quality practice matches under favorable conditions for touring teams, believing it to be essential for the growth of Test cricket.
“The problem England will have is a lack of match preparation,” Cook remarked.

He advocated for more practice matches, stating, “It would be good if there was some sort of unwritten agreement between countries to put on decent practice matches in decent conditions for touring teams.”

Despite these concerns, Cook remained optimistic about England’s chances, relying on their ‘Bazball’ approach, which encourages an attacking style of play. This approach was notably successful during England’s tour of Pakistan in 2023, where they secured a 3-0 victory.
“I now think it is their best chance of success. They won’t follow the traditional rules of batting in the subcontinent,” Cook noted. He explained that the key time for a batsman in the subcontinent is the first 30 balls, where acclimatization is crucial.

Cook identified Joe Root as a key asset, praising the former England captain as one of the best-ever players of spin.
“He’s scored a lot of runs in the subcontinent in recent years in Sri Lanka and India, and he has done it by being very proactive, but in what seemed to be a very risk-free way,” Cook added.
The first Test of the five-match series is scheduled to commence on Thursday in Hyderabad.
Cook expressed curiosity about India’s response to England’s aggressive approach, suggesting it could potentially unsettle the Indian bowlers.
While recognizing the challenges posed by the lack of match preparation, Cook’s confidence in England’s ‘Bazball’ approach remains a beacon of hope for the visiting team as they embark on a challenging tour of India.

Wisden picks 2023 men’s ODI team of the year, includes 7 Indians in the XI

(With inputs from PTI)

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