Bess backed to bounce back after England spinner misfires

By Sports Desk March 05, 2021

England are confident spinner Dom Bess will rediscover his rhythm after being left frazzled by India's batsman and his own wayward line on day two of the fourth Test.

India reached 294-7 thanks to a stunning 115-ball century from Rishabh Pant, who helped the hosts establish an 89-run lead, after surviving a big lbw shout from Bess shortly before tea.

Bess finished without reward, with figures of 0-56 in 15 overs pointing to a lack of threat from the 23-year-old off-spinner. He bowled with a lack of control at times, throwing in far too many full tosses, and will want to get among the wickets on Saturday morning and put a bad Friday behind him.

He was recalled for this contest in Ahmedabad having been left out for the second and third Tests, both of which England lost after making a winning start to the series in Chennai.

England spin coach Jeetan Patel said Bess had "needed a break" and was "jaded" by his experience of that opening match.

But Patel trusts Bess is capable of troubling batsmen again, and said of his disappointing performance so far in this match: "It's no real one thing, it's just a fact it didn't work out for him today.

"There's still room for him to improve, like everyone in this group, but Bessy's still very young. He's still learning how to bowl red ball at Test level which is very difficult. He'll be better for these experiences going forward.

"There's some things with Bessy that we'd like to get into. He's got time after this Test match to get back and look at that, but right now he's got a job to do and that's getting those three wickets tomorrow.

"He would have liked to have bowled a lot better today and liked to have given a lot more to the group, and it didn't work out for him. They played him very well. They sat on him and looked for balls to score off when they could.

"Right now he will be quite down and quite tired, but the beauty of this game is the fact there is another opportunity tomorrow."

Ben Stokes, by contrast, was hailed as England's 'Superman' by Patel. 

Stokes took 2-73 in 22 overs to follow up his 55 with the bat on Thursday, and at stumps he appeared exhausted, having been running in amid searing heat.

"Stokesy's your man. He's the guy you want to go to for anything really," Patel said. "He's almost like a Superman with this sort of stuff. He really does enjoy the tough battles.

"He bowled a lot of overs today. He almost bowled the whole first session and he got some crucial wickets for us on the way.

"He's pretty cooked as you can imagine, but he's a warhorse and he loves it. He loves when it gets tough and he loves when it gets hot and tiring, and that's when he stands up most. Hopefully we see the best of him again tomorrow."

Patel said Pant's innings was "pretty special" but claimed the match was "still quite in the balance".

"He came out after that tea break and took it to us," Patel said of Pant's effort. "Hats have to go off to how they played that."

Related items

  • Pickford becomes England's record appearance maker at major tournaments Pickford becomes England's record appearance maker at major tournaments

    Jordan Pickford will become England's leading appearance maker at major international tournaments against Denmark at Euro 2024. 

    The Everton goalkeeper will make his 21st appearance for the Three Lions at a major international competition in Frankfurt, surpassing Peter Shilton's record. 

    Pickford made his debut for his country in 2017 in a draw with Germany at Wembley, and was included in Gareth Southgate's 23-man squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. 

    The 30-year-old has since established himself as England's number one, and has kept 10 clean sheets for his nation at major tournaments, the latest of which coming last Sunday against Serbia. 

    Pickford enjoyed an excellent start to his Euro 2024, completing 25 of his 41 passes against Serbia with a pass accuracy of 61 per cent. 

     

  • Powell defends decision to leave out McCoy against England Powell defends decision to leave out McCoy against England

    West Indies fans were left perplexed when pacer Obed McCoy was left out of the XI to play England in their opening Super 8 encounter at the Daren Sammy Cricket Stadium in St. Lucia on Wednesday.

    The Vincentian left-arm quick took 3-14 from three overs in the last group stage game against Afghanistan at the same venue after coming into the team for Romario Shepherd who left the squad to attend the birth of his second child.

    Historically, McCoy’s eight wickets in three games at the venue is the third most among active cricketers with only Pakistan Saeed Ajmal with 11 wickets in five games and Hayden Walsh Jr with 12 wickets in five games ahead of him.

    Despite these statistics, McCoy was left out of the team that suffered a brutal eight-wicket loss on Thursday.

    Shepherd, who came back into the side in place of McCoy, conceded 41 runs in two overs.

    His last over was belted for 30 runs by Phil Salt who finished 87*.

    West Indies Captain Rovman Powell defended the call to leave McCoy out of the side.

    “I think when you're selecting a team and you have players that are playing good you will always have to make the tough decision. We sat down as a selection group and thought that the team that played today is our better team to face England and it just didn't work out tonight,” Powell said in a post-match press conference.

    The hosts will next take on joint hosts the USA in Barbados on Friday before facing South Africa in their final Super 8 game in Antigua on Sunday.

    Despite Wednesday’s loss, the West Indies still have their fate in their own hands as wins in those two games will see them having a good chance of making it to the last four.

    “I think our destiny is still in our own hands. It's just for us to continue to play good cricket. And once we do that, we think we'll be ok,” Powell said.

     

     

  • Saka insists there is more to come from England ahead of Denmark clash Saka insists there is more to come from England ahead of Denmark clash

    Bukayo Saka has said there is another level to come from England ahead of their Group C fixture against Denmark in Frankfurt. 

    The Three Lions started their Euro 2024 campaign with a 1-0 win over Serbia last Sunday, courtesy of Jude Bellingham's fourth international goal. 

    But England supporters were left wanting more from their side at full-time, with Serbia controlling the game after the break and possibly unfortunate to not steal a point. 

    Saka, who is featuring in his third major tournament for his country, played a huge role in Bellingham's opener, crossing the ball onto the head of the Real Madrid star.

    Alongside Phil Foden, Harry Kane and Bellingham, the Arsenal attacker is part of an exciting plethora of attacking options for Gareth Southgate at the tournament, but he believes there is room for improvement ahead of their game with Denmark. 

    "Yeah, a bit you could say that," Saka said if England's attacking display against Serbia was fluid. "You could say that for the goal, but I think there is a new level to come from us."

    The 22-year-old was part of the England side who reached the final at Euro 2020 and started the game against Denmark in the semi-finals, which the Three Lions won 2-1 after extra-time at Wembley. 

    "Denmark are a good team and provide a good challenge," Saka said. "We played them at the last Euros, and it went to extra-time, but we won in the end. 

    "That was a very special night, a very special night."

    England arrived in Germany as one of the favourites to win the competition after their displays at their last three major tournaments. 

    Saka has become a mainstay under Southgate's tenure at the helm, and he believes the current squad looking to end England's 58-year wait for an international trophy is the best it has been. 

    "I would like to say so. The experience also makes us better. A lot of us were there at that tournament and the World Cup as well. 

    "We learned things from playing together which makes us better, so I would say so."

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.