IND vs ENG: ‘If it’s safe, we’d love to play in front of crowds’, says Jack Leach


England spinner Jack Leach welcomed the idea of playing in front of the spectators in the upcoming Test series against India, starting from February 5. However, the 29-year-old also cautioned about the safety concerns that comes along with it, stating that it won’t be wise “to add to a problem that’s affecting the whole world”.  

As per fresh reports, the second Test between the two parties will see a maximum of 50 per cent crowd capacity allowed inside the stadium, a decision that was taken after discussion between BCCI and TNCA officials. However, an official confirmation in this regard is yet to come from BCCI’s end. 

“We all want to play in front of crowds, that’s for sure. It needs to be safe, and we don’t want to be adding to a problem that’s affecting the whole world,” Leach said during a virtual press-conference from Chennai on Monday.

“So if it’s safe and if it’s good, then great; we’d love to play in front of crowds as soon as possible,” the 29-year-old added. 

Leach, who has so far claimed 44 Test wickets from 12 matches, was recalled in the England squad for the recently-concluded Sri Lanka series after a gap of over a year. He marked his return with impressive performances in the two outings in the island nation and finished the series with 10 wickets.

Leach, who would now be itching to take on the Indian unit coming fresh from a historic Test victory in Australia, said that he would try to use the coming opportunity to bring out his best.

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“Not to be number one, I just want to bring my best. It has been a long time not playing, and in that time I did a lot of work to try and become the bowler I want to be. I feel like it’s all in there, I just need to bring it out now and Sri Lanka was a good start for that, and I feel like I am going in the right direction,” Leach said. 

Leach also admitted that tackling the Indian batsmen will pose some serious challenges but he is confident about overcoming them by sticking to the basics. “We have been watching a lot of analysis of Indian batter. So, yaa getting to know how they play. I think they will gonna cause a problem I guess. I had that experience in Sri Lanka with guys like Angelo Mathews. I guess playing in Sri Lanka and in playing in those wickets is a good experience to draw on so soon,” said Jack.

“I think it’s mainly about sticking to what I do well and knowing that I have had the experience of bowling to very good batters in the world so I don’t want to complicate things much. Obviously, I am aware of their strengths and I’m gonna be sticking about what I do best,” he added.

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Sagar Biswas

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