England’s new approach: “method to the madness”

Marcus Trescothick, England’s batting coach, has stated that there is a strategic approach behind the seemingly chaotic and unstructured “Bazball” attack, which is inspired by Brendon McCullum and Ben Stokes.

Marcus Trescothick, discusses the concept of “Bazball” and suggests that there is a certain level of logic and organization behind the seemingly chaotic approach. He suggests that there is a “method to the madness” of this style of play.

England's new approach method to the madness

Before McCullum assumed the role of coach last May, England had suffered a tumultuous period, having lost nine Tests in 2021. This unfortunate record marks the most losses by any team in the history of Test cricket.

Marcus Trescothick, England’s batting coach, revealed insights into the aggressive Bazball tactics of coach Brendon McCullum and captain Ben Stokes as England secured their 10th win in 11 Tests, defeating New Zealand by 267 runs in the pink ball Test last week. The Stokes-led team’s dominant performance was highlighted by Player of the Match Harry Brook, who scored 143 runs from 122 deliveries, exemplifying England’s fast-paced approach in the longer version of the game.

Despite the seemingly disorganized and disorderly nature of the batting onslaught, Trescothick confirms that he, Stokes, and McCullum have premeditated strategies to dismantle their opponents.

Trescothick explained to SENZ radio, “There is a certain logic behind the apparent chaos. It’s not just about blindly attacking with full force. Our approach is to exert pressure on bowlers and identify opportunities that allow us to push the game forward.”

Prior to McCullum’s appointment in May last year, England had hit rock bottom with nine losses in 2021, the highest number of defeats by any team in the history of Test cricket.

According to Trescothick, the team’s new perspective was sparked by the arrival of the former Blackcap, McCullum. However, the whole squad and staff have been instrumental in driving this shift in approach.

Trescothick stated, “It all began with Brendon’s arrival, as he aimed to develop the team’s approach.”

In addition, the team’s captain, Ben Stokes, has also been exploring ways to play the game differently, providing the team with a unique perspective. Together, McCullum and Stokes have been instrumental in driving England’s evolution in approach, encouraging players to think outside the box and take risks. This new attitude has fostered a culture of innovation and creativity within the squad, where players are encouraged to challenge themselves and push boundaries. The results have been impressive, with the team experiencing a surge in performance and a string of victories, including a dominant win over New Zealand in the pink ball Test.

“I think encouraging them to be more aggressive and to be a bit more free, which then allows us as coaches to then follow through with that ethos and keep pushing the guys towards the danger if you like and keep pushing them to try and find different approaches, find a different way of playing this game.”

“We had a period of time prior where it didn’t go so well but we wanted to take the game ahead so it’s sort of breeding itself now. The boys have had success, and they’re looking for moments where they can be a little more aggressive, and the evidence is in the pudding.

“The guys have had success doing it and they’re finding and looking at opportunities where they can go out and be a bit more aggressive and the proof has been in the pudding.

“We’ve won 10 out of 11 games on the bounce and it’s like, this is pretty good at what we’re trying to do.”

Ben Stokes has already stated his desire for England’s aggressive style of cricket to permeate county cricket.

“It’s great to see it filtering down from us up here at the top down the Lions and hopefully into county cricket as well … I feel like heading into the summer we’re in a position where we’ve got that. I think we’ve got a great crop of fast bowlers coming through England at the moment and it’s exciting.”

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