Nasser Hussain Anticipates Showdown as India Prepares to Tackle England’s Bazball Strategy

Former England captain Nasser Hussain anticipates a gripping battle as India, gears up to counter England’s Bazball strategy in the upcoming Test series.

As the eagerly awaited five-match Test series between India and England looms on January 25 in Hyderabad, former England captain Nasser Hussain speculates on the anticipated clash. Leading the Indian side, Rohit Sharma faces the challenge of neutralizing England’s aggressive Bazball strategy, a point of keen interest for fans.

It’s been 12 years since England last secured a Test series victory in India, with Alastair Cook at the helm and spinners Graeme Swann and Monty Panesar playing pivotal roles in their 2-1 triumph. Despite winning the opening Test in Chennai during the 2021 tour, England went on to lose the next three games, conceding the series 3-1.

Hussain shared his observations on the Sky Sports Cricket podcast, stating, “There’s been a lot of talk about Indian cricket and there’s been a lot of talk about Bazball. My sense in the World Cup was that a lot of Indian fans are waiting to see how to put Bazball to bed.”

England’s captaincy baton is now in the hands of Ben Stokes, returning after a left knee operation. The English squad features four spinners, including Jack Leach, Rehan Ahmed, Tom Hartley, and Shoaib Bashir. Hussain believes that if India opts for pitches that spin moderately, it would play to their strengths, allowing their spinners and batters to outperform England.

“If they ask for pitches that spin a lot, then it becomes a bit of a lottery and brings England’s spinners into the game. The way Bazball goes about its business, they won’t die wondering,” remarked Hussain.

As the series unfolds in Hyderabad, Visakhapatnam, Rajkot, Ranchi, and Dharamshala, Hussain emphasizes the pivotal role of top-order batter Joe Root in England’s success. He notes that Root becomes England’s linchpin, especially if the pitches favor spin. Reflecting on different pitch conditions, Hussain draws attention to England’s ability to adapt, citing Stokes as a formidable player of spin.

The cricket pundit concludes by highlighting the high-risk nature of Test cricket in India and underscores the importance of adaptability and strategy for both teams in this much-anticipated series.