Former England captain Michael Vaughan’s message to the England side is clear – Be angry and challenge Virat Kohli in the upcoming five-match Test series. Calling for more consistency from seasoned campaigners Alastair Cook and Joe Root, Vaughan stated that he prefers a five-man bowling attack for England and wanted duo of Stuart Broad and James Anderson to “step up and challenge Virat Kohli’s front foot”.
Expressing his views on the highly-anticipated duel between Kohli and Anderson and Broad, Vaughan wrote a column for Daily Telegraph and wrote, “I was critical of them before Headingley. They were outstanding in that game and they will have to be outstanding again. It is always hard when you have had a long break from Test cricket to get that vibe again. The good thing for England is they are playing at Edgbaston. We just don’t lose there and Stuart Broad and James Anderson love bowling at the ground.”
Earlier, England had beaten Pakistan by an innings and 55 runs in the Headingley Test in June. Reflecting on the performance Vaughan said, “This England team has to find that attitude without first having to be stirred into a response through criticism after a hammering. Maybe the Adil Rashid furore will help,” said Vaughan.
“England will not win every game, they are not good enough, but their mindset and mentality can be the same every week,” he added.
On how to attack Kohli Vaughan’s idea was clear, “You need his front left-foot going over to the off side, he then starts doubting where his off-stump is and playing squarer on the off side which is when the outside edge comes into play.”
“You expect Broad and Anderson to step up and challenge Kohli’s front foot. Bowl outside off-stump and then throw the odd one in straight to get him playing across the line and scissor his feet,” he explained.
“England did it in the one-day series at times. He was vulnerable a yard outside off-stump and the likes of Anderson and Broad have to hang it out there and say ‘Come to us’. If there is any movement in the air they will be a real threat,” he remarked.
On his preferred combination to take on Kohli and Co, the 42-year-old said, “If England go with six bowlers it is too many. Six covers too many bases. You are almost not trusting your bowlers to be good enough. Personally, I would pack the batting and pick the best five bowlers, with Root the sixth as a part-timer.”
“England’s problems have been not getting enough big scores on the board and this Test team has to work out how they are going to make 400-550 on a regular basis, not just in one-off games,” he said.
“If it is four seamers and one spinner, fine, or three and two because of conditions then also fine, but do not be any funkier than that. With the heat and how dry it has been I suspect they will go with two spinners,” he concluded.