Sun, 10 Dec 2023

London [UK], August 14 (ANI): South Africa Test skipper Dean Elgar has played down the hype around England's new batting approach in the format under head coach Brendon McCullum.

Elgar has stressed that he has "absolutely no interest" in the way England have reformed their Test batting ahead of the Test series between the sides in an interview with a leading UK newspaper.

England, whose batting has undergone an astonishing metamorphosis with McCullum taking over the coaching role, is set to host South Africa for three Tests this summer, with the first Test to be played at Lord's on August 17.

They come off the back of a 3-0 drubbing of New Zealand and a victory in the one-off Test against India - a continuation of the series played in 2021 - in the last couple of months.

However, Elgar is unperturbed by the talk around Bazball, the reformed batting mantra, and has in fact thrown an open challenge for England's batters.

"I think it can go one of two ways for them and it can go south very quickly. Their own coach doesn't even like the slogan they've come up with. I'd like to see them do it against our seamers, " Elgar said.

South Africa, however, have issues in the fast bowling department with Duanne Olivier ruled out with a muscle tear and Kagiso Rabada still recovering from injuries to ligaments in his left ankle during the T20Is against England.

Olivier was the pick of South Africa's quicks in the pre-series warm-up match against England Lions, which South Africa lost by an innings and 56 runs.

The upcoming Test series is a part of the ICC World Test Championship, where South Africa are currently the topper with a win percentage of 71.43%.

England, meanwhile, have won just five of their 16 Test matches this cycle and are seventh in the points table. But four of those five wins have come in the last four Tests they played. (ANI)

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