ENG v NZ 2021: "At least try to go at it hard," Hussain slams England's slow batting in chase at Lord's

England made no efforts to chase the target in stipulated 70-odd overs.

England managed to draw the first Test | Getty

Former England skipper Nasser Hussain feels that England should have gone for a win rather than playing sluggish cricket on the final day of the first Test against New Zealand.

After taking the lead of 103 runs in the first innings against England, Kane Williamson-led New Zealand declared their second innings for 169 runs setting a target of 273 in 75 overs for hosts. 

With 273 runs needed in the last two sessions, England then responded in a cautious batting at the top and then finished with just 170 runs on the board after 70 overs to draw the first Test match at Lords. 

England’s slow batting approach and to not go for win invited criticism as many fans and pundits including former English skipper Nasser Hussain reproached their slow batting. 

Talking to Sky Sports, former England skipper Nasser Hussain said that only one team - New Zealand - played to win the Test. He explained that England didn't go for it because they were without their 2 key players and low in confidence after a thumping against India.

"There only seemed to be one side that was keen to win it and that's why Kane Williamson stayed on, even at the end. He could have shaken hands at 15 overs to go but he didn't because he was the one playing the positive cricket.

ENG v NZ 2021: Wasim Jaffer and Michael Vaughan surprised after England show no intent in the run chase

“I understand why England didn't go for it -- you have to put it into context. They lost their last three Test matches, there's no Jos Buttler, no Ben Stokes," Naseer Hussain told Sky Sports. 

Hussain remarked that England often found themselves tumbling in the start so they play conservative cricket and they should look for the bigger picture of where the team is heading to.

He added that the Joe-Root-led side should try to show some intent and if they lose some quick wickets they should then try to block. 

"They find themselves 20-3 far too often in Test cricket, so you do have to look at the bigger picture of where this England team are and where they're trying to get to. 

“But I think at least try to go at it hard, show some intent, and if you get four or five down, then you can block, then you can say 'no, we're not going any further,” he said. 

Nasser Hussain further wants the England side to neither play too much aggressive nor too defensive cricket.

"They got criticized a lot for playing aggressive cricket, now they play defensive cricket -- it doesn't have to be one or the other. In 70-odd overs, you can go the other way, and then if you get in a bit of trouble you can drag it back in," he said. 

The second Test between England and New Zealand will be played at Edgbaston on 10th June. 

(ANI/ Sky Sports inputs) 


By Ankitjit Singh - 07 Jun, 2021

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