Fletcher’s ‘three mantras’ of how to dislodge Ponting

Monday, November 22, 2010

LONDON - Former England coach Duncan Fletcher has suggested three ways to the English team to dismiss Australian skipper Ricky Ponting saying that he would be the “key to the Ashes”.

“One. Early on he plays across his pad so you can try to get him lbw,” Fletcher wrote in his weekly column in the Guardian.

“Two: he comes forward late so he is still putting his foot on the ground when he drives the ball. This means that if you bowl at an imaginary fourth stump outside off and aim to pull him forward he may nick off to slip.”

“Three: he likes the pull shot, but early on he hits it up in the air in front of square-leg. Put a fielder about 15 metres in from the boundary for that shot,” he added.

Fletcher, who had masterminded the breakthrough 2005 Ashes series victory for England, also reckons that opening batsman Shane Watson is the weakest link in the Australian top-order.

“A dangerous batsman, but he is a relatively inexperienced opener and I don’t think he understands how to pace an innings. He does not know when to attack and when to sit back,” Fletcher wrote.

“England must not attack him by trying to bowl wicket-taking balls which he can score off. Keep it tight and there is a good chance he will lose patience. Strong on the pull, but he may be vulnerable to the occasional bouncer because he is a compulsive hooker. He also plays hard at the ball, so he may be susceptible to changes of pace,” he added. (ANI)

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