Expected England To Come Ultra-hard, And To Take The Game On: Finch > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more
Cricket news - Expecting England to come out ultra-hard and take the game on: Finch
Aaron Finch is a good bloke. He is one of the nice guys in world cricket. There are plenty of cricketers around the world and within his team who would testify that. On Monday (June 24), though, Finch declared that "99 per cent of people" playing the sport were "good blokes".
The question on the eve of the high-profile Australia v England clash at Lord's was about the budding bromance between former arch nemeses David Warner and Jonny Bairstow when they opened together for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL. And Finch, who has plenty of experience playing in the foreign T20 leagues, insisted that these global tournaments had ended up giving players an opportunity to team up with those who they have a certain "perception" about and then get over it.
"I think that's opened up everyone's eyes to 99 per cent of people that you play with are good blokes, regardless of what tournament it is or who you're playing for," the Australian captain said. Finch then went on to cite the example of his opening partner and prime candidate for "most divisive player in world cricket currently", Warner, and the different perceptions that people have about him, not to forget how they change once they end up sharing a dressing-room.
"They see a side of him and they play against him and they see one when they play with him, and he's a great man. He's someone that obviously Jonny (Bairstow) and him have had some run-ins on the ground, too. It's good to see that when you do get an opportunity to get to know somebody, that you take that advantage," said Finch.
Interestingly, the question came on the back of one regarding Bairstow's column in a local newspaper where he'd called the Australians "hypocritical" for not wanting Warner and Steve Smith to be booed now despite former coach Darren Lehmann having encouraged the fans Down Under to jeer Stuart Broad in 2013. And Finch played the perfect diplomat in admitting that nobody had control over how the crowd would react to a player, but did make sure to say that the "white noise" didn't "make a difference" to his team.
"I think whatever the public do, you're not going to change it, whether someone comes out and says do or don't. I think it's just going to happen regardless, anyway. It hasn't affected our boys one bit, I can honestly say that if anything, it's given them a bit more motivation," he said.
Finch also made it clear that for all the bonhomie and blokeship between Bairstow and Warner, they would take the field as rivals and opponents on Tuesday (June 25).
"That's pretty easy to flick back into international mode, no doubt. It's a game representing your country. There's a lot of pride on the line. There's a couple of points in a World Cup, which is so tightly contested," he said. And in this scenario it's only natural for Warner to have shared his points about how the team could go about getting the better of the same batsman he was sharing century stands with two months ago.
"Everyone is involved in sort of planning meetings and things like that. You get an opportunity to talk, whether it's in a structured meeting or over coffee or dinner or a beer or whatever it might be. I think as cricketers, we're all nuffies at the end of the day for the game; so you're always talking about the game and coming up different strategies and things that you've seen over time," he said.
It's a game where England are desperate to win for the first time in a while when it comes to ODI cricket. Their earlier defeat to Pakistan and the slip-up against Sri Lanka has left them with the daunting task of staying alive in a tournament they were slated to dominate. Australia would drive a serious wedge into England's hopes with a win at Lord's. But Finch, who last played in a victorious ODI against England in September 2015, played up Eoin Morgan & Co's new-found confidence in 50-over cricket, and their ability to bounce back.
"If you look at England's record over the last couple of years, I think I read something the other day that they haven't lost back-to-back ODIs in England for quite some time, and if you look at their trend, they tend to bounce back and go ultra-aggressive, as well. So we are ready for that. We are expecting them to come out ultra-hard and take the game on, which has been one of their main traits over the last couple of years, in particular," he said.
At the same time, Finch also spoke about Australia's trademark ability to peak at the right time in World Cups and dealing with pressure at the business-end of the tournaments, when asked to compare it with England's "fundamental" inability to do so.
"I think when you look back to the '99 World Cup, Australia were on wood for a lot of that tournament and played their best cricket under real pressure, and the senior players stood up when it was counted, and I think that's a great learning for everyone. And the fact that we've got six guys in our squad who were part of 2015 World Cup win is really valuable. We've also got Ricky Ponting with us; Brad Haddin with us as coaching staff have won World Cups and multiple World Cups, as well," he said.
Finch is still in a nascent stage of his ODI captaincy and thrust with the massive responsibility of getting his relatively unsung-in comparison to the behemoths in 2003, 2007 and even 2015-team to defend the crown. But he's not new to leadership roles having captained teams throughout his youth development stages, and does have the experience of lifting the Big Bash League trophy with Melbourne Renegades. He, however, admitted to not being a finished product and also showed why he's keen to keep learning on the job.
"I think eight years ago more the Melbourne Renegades to now, I've changed a lot, just in the way that I used to talk a lot, and some feedback from the boys was: "Don't talk so much." So I took that on board. I don't tend to not talk as much around team meetings or things like that. I try and let everyone else have their own say and just contribute where I need to," he said.
And it seems to be working too while helping Finch create an "environment for everyone to succeed in".
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