‘I was upset by numerous comments about…’ – Ryan Sidebottom defends Ollie Robinson amid criticism

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Ryan Sidebottom, Ollie Robinson


Former England pacer Ryan Sidebottom has backed Ollie Robinson to get out of his rut ​​in Dharamsala after England lost the fourth Test in Ranchi. In the process, India won the series 3-1 and claimed second place in the WTC points table.

For England, this was the first loss in a Test series under captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum. This was also the first time England lost three Test matches in a row under the “Bazball regime”.

Ollie Robinson entered the Ranchi Test in place of Mark Wood. That was his first Test match of the series and it looked a bit raw. The England pacer bowled 13 overs and gave away 54 runs without taking a wicket. He was not used with the ball in the second inning. Sidebottom felt that the pacer should have played the practice matches for the England Lions before the Test series began.

“I wasn’t disappointed, but I was quite upset by the numerous comments about his bowling and lack of form. There is no number one villain in any team if someone doesn’t perform as they should,” Sidebottom told the Vaughany and Tuffers Cricket Club Podcast.

He further blamed the team management for taking him to the Ranchi test match in which England were faced with a must-win situation and Robinson was not prepared at all. He also questioned the message that the team management could have sent to the pacer before the fourth Test.

“For me, you can throw anything you want into the nets. It doesn’t matter. You need to play. You need time in the middle, as a batsman, as a bowler, you need to have a few overs under your belt. Just to push him when he was carrying drinks and probably doing a lot of physical exercise to then get into a high pressure situation, England needed to win, to then put the onus on him,” Sidebottom defended Robinson with his comments.

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Ollie Robinson needs time: Ryan Sidebottom

The former England pacer said Robinson needs time to get back into his rhythm. The England pacer, who has 76 Test wickets in just 20 Test matches, has taken 21 wickets in five Test matches against India, including two fifers.

He further said that bowling in a match situation with limited practice is much more difficult than bowling in the nets. He said the intensity levels are very different in a match than during practice sessions and therefore the expectations are very different.

“He needs time, he needs to bowl, he’s definitely the type of player who needs to get into the rhythm and feel good, and have the ball in his hand for numerous overs to… feel good about himself. “If you look at his record, it’s fantastic, isn’t it?” said the former England pacer.

England’s loss in the Test series has seen them lose crucial WTC points as they languish in the eighth position of the 2023-25 ​​WTC cycle. They have a PCT of 19.44 in the nine games they have played so far. Meanwhile, they won three and lost as many as five Test matches, three of them against India.

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