England all-rounder Moeen Ali chose to un-retire himself in the longest format of the game to play under the leadership of Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum. The veteran all-rounder known for his ability to play an aggressive brand of cricket revealed that the decision came after Brendon McCullum himself chose to call him and convinced him to join the Test team.
Ali, who is a key member of the Chennai Super Kings side in the IPL revealed the details behind his decision on Sports Today.
“Baz called and told me that, ‘look, this will suit your type of cricket etc, so yeah,’”Moeen said.
“In my opinion, Ben Stokes is showing that it is okay to get out playing shots and England do need a bit of that. There will be bad days, of course, but there were many bad days that were happening, there weren’t any good days anyway,” Ali talked about the philosophy of running towards danger and not away from it.
Asked about the shift in mentality and the flipside of failure, the left-handed batter spoke about approaching the idea from a different perspective.
“In the white ball cricket, even after the 2015 World Cup, we also had bad games. We were having bad games in England in Test cricket, to be honest with you. The way we were playing, we were playing so bad, it was quite embarrassing at times. With this brand of cricket, I know that it is a little bit extreme at the minute, but it is just more to give a guy more confidence to express yourself.”
Asked about India’s captaincy conundrum with Rohit Shama racing against time to get fit after testing positive for Covid-19, Ali felt that the cap should be handed to Virat Kohli.
“Because Virat was the captain earlier in the last series, I would give it (captaincy) to him for this one game. But it is obviously his call if he wants to take it or not. He is probably relaxed and happy, his mind is probably settled with not being the Test captain. He’s got the experience, and to be honest with you, this is a big series for India,” Ali said.
He revealed that unlike last time, India would be up against a steep competition and might be the underdogs coming into the rescheduled game.
“If this series was finished last year, India would have won 3-1, but now, I feel the way England have played I think India might be slightly undercooked, due to the lack of cricket in England,” Ali said.
“If England come out the way they have played in the last few games, England will be the favourites,” the all-rounder concluded.
India take on England in the fifth and the final Test match of the 2021 series on 1 July at Edgbaston.