With the ever-changing rules of ODI cricket, the game is tilting towards the batting than the bowling.
1. Two different balls from each end (keeping the ball almost new till last over)
2. maximum of only 4 fielders outside 30-yards circle till 40 overs
3. Nearly flat decks
They are all screaming about the freedom to batsmen from start to end.
England is taking full toll of these rules with their instinctive – at all cost – attack with the bat. Per stats, England has scored 300 and above 35 times since 2015 world cup in comparison to 34 before that time.
However, the game’s laws aren’t the only reason for this attack. England has one of the best batting lineups in the world. Jofra Archer filled in as no. 11 in their recent ODI against Ireland is the sign of the strength. Likes of Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow are best equipped to hit the new ball anywhere with the range of strokes they have in the armory. Joe Root at no.3 can anchor the innings and others can play around him. He knows how to build the innings and can play long innings at will. He can even score some quick boundaries at the death.
Captain Morgan, Buttler and Stokes makes the solid middle order if openers fail to do their job. All three of them can take apart any bowling lineup in the world on a given day. With Moeen Ali at no.7 and Willey/Woakes at 8, top 6 would seldom be in doubt of “what if I get out”. Willey, Woakes and Moeen Ali are quite capable of building the innings if required. Rashid, Plunket, and Archer (he’s yet to be selected in world cup squad but few have doubts over his inclusion) can play big shots at the death if required.
Jost Buttler, Ben Stokes, and Moeen Ali at 5, 6 and 7 are very good all-rounders in with Stokes topping the chart. They provide the balance which allows the tickling of the bowling line up to suit the situation. The major lack in their bowling strength is raw pace. Mark Wood till date is their only perspective, but with his high economy rates, England don’t rely on him too much. However, the addition of Jofra Archer can fill this shoe. He generates the raw pace with some enviable accuracy, as he showed in the T20 leagues across the world.
A chink in the Armory
However, as Michael Vaughan has said in the past, England keeps scoring 300+ since they keep conceding those many as well. And we saw that last night when Pakistan nearly chased down 373. This is the only worry England has at the moment. However, they keep defending these scores most of the days though.
England’s instinctive attack is the game to watch out for this World cup, that can take them to the coveted trophy, missing in their bank.