The third Test at Headingley is underway with Ben Stokes' side trailing 2-0 at the halfway point. Former Australian skipper Glenn McGrath believes England has been too casual so far at the Ashes. Glenn McGrath sarcastically referred to England's aggressive style as 'CazBall' instead of 'Bazball', the aggressive style associated with the Brendon McCullum-coached England side. The former Australia bowler McGrath has weighed in on England's style and admitted that, although he admires it, the way it was implemented was flawed. Ashes 2023: Sir Geoffrey Boycott Demands Public Apology from Australia Over Controversial 'Stumping' of Jonny Bairstow
As England chased 371 on the final day, there was a great deal of controversy. Jonny Bairstow's stumps were knocked down by Alex Carey as he walked out of his crease. England and Stokes, who felt the over had finished, disagreed with Australia's decision to run Bairstow out because the ball was still alive.
It led to wild debate as thousands of fans booed the Australians, and the Long Room at Lord's also joined in, along with two prime ministers of both countries. The Australian prime minister defended his country's Ashes cricket team on Tuesday after his British prime minister Rishi Sunak stated that a dismissal during the second test violated the spirit of the match.
McGrath stated: "I want to start by saying Jonny Bairstow's controversial dismissal was not my favourite. I have been thinking about it a lot, reading all of the reaction, and it has had me in two minds.
‘Originally I would have liked to have seen Australia captain Pat Cummins withdraw his appeal, after Alex Carey stumped Bairstow as the Englishman wandered out of his crease’
‘But the more I think about it the more I think it was the right decision from Cummins. I think it is a sign of something deeper in England's mentality. What is telling is every single one of the former players I have spoken to, English or Australian, did not have a problem with it. Even West Indies legend Brian Lara has said it was out.’
‘..Now, I am a fan of Bazball. The concept of backing yourself, playing without fear and putting pressure back on the opposition - that I agree with wholeheartedly.’
"But Bairstow's dismissal epitomises what we have seen from England in this series. It has been Casual Ball - CazBall if you will, not Bazball."
‘The Bairstow dismissal, the Yorkshireman walking out of his crease like he owned the game, was the culmination of everything we have seen from this current team,’McGrath added.
‘I have read a lot about the 'spirit of cricket' this week. Well, you have to respect Test cricket with your attitude as well. You cannot just go wandering out of your crease.’
‘It took something like the Bairstow incident for England to realise they are in the battle - and that is disappointing.’
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 06, 2023 04:23 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).