Too early to know whether other countries will follow 'Baz-ball': Kiwi coach Gary Stead

by IANS |

Auckland, July 26 (IANS) New Zealand cricket team head coach Gary Stead feels it is too early to know whether other countries would be keen to adopt England's new attacking style of play in Tests under coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Ben Stokes.

England have got instant success from the time McCullum joined as chief coach from IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders, with the team winning four consecutive Tests at home -- three against New Zealand and the rescheduled match against India at Edgbaston.

While Stead had positive words to say about England's attacking style, he also indicated that other teams will wait for at least two more years before adopting McCullum's model, for which the term 'Baz-ball' has been coined.

"I think maybe we'll know more of that in 24 months or so, a little bit further down the track when they've played more cricket as well," Stead told SENZ Mornings on Tuesday.

"There's no doubt that they had a couple of outstanding performers in that series. I thought Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow in particular tried to take the game away from us, and they were successful," added Stead.

Former England skipper Root and middle-order batter Bairstow have been at the forefront of 'Baz-ball', with the duo milking the New Zealand and India attack in the Tests gone by to effect some of the best run-chases in the history of England cricket in recent times.

"I think you have to have players that have the personalities and I guess the ability to play that way and I think maybe what's happened is that some of the potential that was in that England team has been unlocked and I guess that's exciting for world cricket as well. But it will make everyone sit up and just watch and have a think about how we play too," added Stead.

Stead also opined England's approach could open the door for more exciting cricket in the future.

"I think we saw some (exciting) cricket in those three Tests as well. I still, I guess, maintain that we had an opportunity going into the last day in all three Test matches and I think... any Test match that goes into the last session with all three results still on the table is a great Test match.

"If Test cricket is going to be played this way, then I think we are in for an exciting time and that's great for the game too," added Stead.

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