England’s batting on Day One of the first Test against England was disappointing as the batsmen are talented and capable of performing much better, says batting coach Marcus Trescothick.
England was bowled out for 183 after choosing to bat first in seamer-friendly conditions at Trent Bridge. Besides Joe Root (64) and Jonny Bairstow (29), none of the other batsmen put up any major resistance as India’s seamers troubled England all day. After putting up a fight in the first two sessions, England unravelled in the final session, losing six wickets for 45 runs.
“Today has not been the ideal day, of course, but that doesn’t define how the rest of the game is going to go, how the rest of the series is going to go. We’ll go away, lick our wounds this evening, and come back and try and get back in the game,” Trescothick said in a press conference at the end of the day’s play.
‘Scheduling an issue’
England’s batsmen didn’t play many Test matches coming into this Test series, with just the two-match series against England in June and the four-Test series in India in March preceding it. Given the scenario, Trescothick recognised the difficulty of being Test-match ready against a potent pace attack such as India’s, but refused to hold that as an excuse.
“I think scheduling is always an issue. Trying to get the balance right as a batter moving into the Test series. Of course, you’d want them to have played a certain amount of red-ball cricket going into it,” he said.
“I think we all appreciate trying to get all the cricket in, for what you need for the players across the whole summer, and county teams, The Hundred, all these different competitions going on. There’s no easy solution to get this right; there’s something which will always have to give. But of course, we don’t want to use anything as an excuse. But we would love to get the batsmen more time at the crease, facing the red ball, and the preparations would be slightly better. But that’s not the way, so you just have to find a way [to cope],” he said.
Trescothick acknowledged the quality of the Indian pace attack.
“They’re probably at their most potent in comparison to where they’ve been for a few years. They have a lot of bases covered. You can see the guys the guys who are not playing, how much quality they have also. They have a good stock of red-ball bowlers currently. They don’t get to be in the World Test Championship final for no reason. They play home and away, so they’ve got to have a good seam attack to back that up.
“A lot of people watched how they performed in Australia. It’s no surprise to us. It’s just challenging; we know that it’s a real contest. We’ve got to raise our game to be able to match up against their skills. We have that ability,” he said.
India’s fast bowlers bowled in the corridor outside the off-stump many times throughout the day, but they also bowled straighter lines to England’s batsmen in the latter half of the day. It meant a lot of nudges and flicks to the leg side, and also a number of wickets. Trescothick said the strategy of bowling on the middle or leg-stump was something his team was prepared for.
“I think we realised the times when they were going to come very straight with a very split field, and potentially even a heavy leg side field. And it’s a slightly different theory than what we faced in many Test series in England; people try and swing the ball away with slips and gullys. But it’s not something we weren’t prepared for. Hopefully, we can keep adjusting to that in the second innings.”
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