IND vs ENG: Michael Atherton Disappointed With Ollie Robinson’s Sluggish Bowling in Ranchi Test

Published By: Ritayan Basu

Last Updated: February 27, 2024, 13:30 IST

IND vs ENG: England's Ollie Robinson (X)

IND vs ENG: England’s Ollie Robinson (X)

Ollie Robinson failed to get a wicket in Ranchi but demonstrated his batting talent, scoring 58 off 96 balls.

Former England captain Michael Atherton has lashed out at Ollie Robinson for his poor bowling performance in the recently concluded fourth Test in Ranchi. Robinson did not feature in the first three Tests of the series where England preferred the experienced duo of James Anderson and Mark Wood. Before featuring in the Ranchi fixture, Robinson’s last international appearance came against Australia in the third Ashes Test in Leeds last year. The 30-year-old failed to capitalise on this opportunity as he could not pick a single wicket in the first innings. Captain Ben Stokes, who spoke highly of Robinson ahead of the fourth Test, did not use him in the second innings.

Despite going wicketless across innings, Ollie Robinson could demonstrate his batting talent in Ranchi. In England’s first innings when many of the batters failed to showcase their A-game, Robinson registered a composed half-century, scoring 58 off 96 balls. He stitched a 102-run partnership with Joe Root that helped the visitors breach the 300-run mark.

While dissecting Ollie Robinson’s performance on Sky Cricket Podcast, Michael Atherton said that the bowler looked quite down on pace with the ball. The cricketer-turned-pundit feels his prolonged absence from professional cricket has taken a toll on Robinson’s form and now, “a good run of game time” can help regain his confidence.

“Ollie Robinson, I was disappointed with him in this game. I felt that he bowled, his pace was pedestrian, and he was quite down on pace. Scored that half-century, but dropped a catch. He was not called upon by Stokes on the last day and he looked like a player who has been out of cricket for seven months,” Michael Atherton explained on Sky Cricket Podcast.

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Nasser Hussain, who was also part of the discussion, has a similar opinion. He referred to Ollie Robinson’s performance during the tour of Pakistan in 2022 when he was one of the best bowlers for the English side. Hussain reckons Robinson should replicate those skills to achieve success in the subcontinent.

The former England skipper said, “Ollie Robinson, as we saw in Pakistan, is a very highly skilful bowler, even if there is not a lot on the pitch. He has those skills, but he needs to be playing to show those skills. He needs to be of a certain pace, he needs to be hitting the mid-eighties and not the high seventies.”

Despite his underwhelming performance in the last game, Ollie Robinson may feature in the series finale, which is slated to be played in Dharamshala from March 7. Mark Wood is expected to return to the playing eleven while James Anderson can be rested to manage his workload. The fifth Test is just a formality for India, who have already established an unassailable 3-1 lead in the home series.

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