Having seen England collapse with the bat for another time in the ongoing series against India, Geoffrey Boycott has said that the side has gone backwards rather than progress forward with their red-ball cricket. Boycott called England's effort on Day 1 at Southampton "rubbish" and said that the home team will have to do a lot of work in order to get better.
"It's not a solid batting line-up. You just don't have confidence." Boycott said on BBC Test Match Special, "If you can't bat, you are always up against it, You are climbing against the wind all the time."
Boycott further named players who have just not been upto the mark and criticised England's decision to drop young batsman Ollie Pope for the fourth Test.
"Cook's form is getting worse, not better; Jennings is not cutting it," Boycott said, "We have dropped our young kid at four, Ollie Pope. We are no further forward in finding batsmen. The selectors would be better at county matches trying to find somebody."
"It's puzzling because they have a batting coach - I'm not just blaming [Mark] Ramprakash - but they have a head coach [Trevor Bayliss] who is supposed to be a batsman - he played for New South Wales. And you wonder what they are doing."
"Isn't it a poor reflection on county cricket's batsmen that a wicketkeeper/batsman has to bat four?" he questioned.
Praising Sam Curran for helping his side resurrect a very difficult situation via a brilliant inning of 78 from 136 balls from no.8, former Captain Michael Vaughan said, "He looks naturally the best defensive player that England have had in this series, The rest of them still jab at the ball even in defense."
Vaughan further pointed out the need for senior members to stand up and added, "Alastair Cook looked OK but he is a concern for me at the top of the order. I still don't think he looks in. When he is in quality form, it's the mind that plays so well and it has always been so strong. To see him deflect it to third slip, like fielding practice, I've not seen that from him."
"I don't think Joe Root wants to play at three, he wants to bat at four. If he continues to play with that head falling to one side, it doesn't matter where he is batting - he is going to get out." he concluded.