Home > Features >

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Gary Ballance fills void left by Jonathan Trott

Garry Ballance has now scored three tons in six Tests © Getty Images
Garry Ballance has now scored three tons in six Tests © Getty Images

Three tons in six Tests is something the selectors would have taken any day when it came to replacing a batsman like Jonathan Trott at No 3. Yorkshire boy Gary Ballance has hit the right note this summer with his second ton in consecutive Tests against India. Abhijit Banare analyses Ballance’s ton in the third Test at Southampton.

While the seniors in the England team have struggled to take onus, Gary Ballance is leading the race among the younger lot to consistently make a difference. With two centuries in consecutive Tests, Ballance has made Jonathan Trott’s absence from No 3 spot a distant past. If there’s any trace of Trott left at that position is the ability of his replacement to grind the bowlers and bat for life. In six Tests, he has already notched up two fifties and three centuries — impressive numbers for a batsman replacing Trott’s calibre.

Unlike the Lord’s Test where he looked to fight for his runs, on an a relatively easy track at Southampton, Ballance infused the much needed flow to the England innings which could otherwise have crawled to 200 at stumps with Alastair Cook still bearing a satisfied smile. The 24-year-old left-hander cut and drove at ease while the man at the other end was waging a battle to survive as long as he can.

This century was more about an easier track where the Indian pacers bowled to his strengths more often. He was at comfort facing short balls. Despite all this, it shouldn’t go unnoticed that Ballance has shown notable weakness to deliveries that go across him from a good length or are a bit overpitched. This Indian pace attack, as seen from the previous two matches has the ability to collectively nag you down. But the scenario can be different when Ballance faces much quicker bowlers.

Not your typical left-hander, but Gary Ballance is mighty effective © Getty Images
Not your typical left-hander, but Gary Ballance is mighty effective © Getty Images

Ballance isn’t your typical left-hander though, who generally are graceful and classy. He is more of an accumulator but possesses the ability to switch in to an aggressive mood conveniently. He showed it during his 90s at Lord’s and even here.

One of the challenges which Ballance has succeeded in is the ability to steady the innings early on. Ballance has almost been like an opener with Alastair Cook being the usual wicket within the first 10-15 overs of the innings. And as of now, Sam Robson hasn’t looked steady either. England could’ve easily plunged into more misery if the new No 3 had failed to click. But the Yorkshire batsman has presented the patience required at that batting position which is evident from the Lord’s and Southampton innings.

Undoubtedly, Ballance has the temperament to play the big innings. With the pitch not playing any tricks, and Ballance being adept against this pace attack, he will surely be aiming for a big one on Day Two.

Complete coverage of India’s tour to England here

(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)

World T20 League 2014

Oct 2, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Hyderabad

World T20 League 2014

Oct 2, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Hyderabad

West Indies tour of India 2014, Practice match

Oct 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Mumbai

Matador BBQs One-Day Cup, 2014

Oct 4, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Woolloongabba, Brisbane

Matador BBQs One-Day Cup, 2014

Oct 4, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Brisbane

More

World T20 League 2014

Sep 30, 2014  at Bengaluru

Barbados won by 6 wkts (D/L method)

World T20 League 2014

Sep 30, 2014  at Bengaluru

Perth Scorchers won by 3 wkts

World T20 League 2014

Sep 29, 2014  at Hyderabad

Kolkata Knight Riders won by 36 runs

World T20 League 2014

Sep 28, 2014  at Mohali

Kings XI Punjab won by 7 wkts

World T20 League 2014

Sep 28, 2014  at Mohali

Hobart Hurricanes won by 6 wkts

Photos

KKR vs Dolphins, CLT20 2014

Videos

Arjuna Ranatunga shares his views on U-19 cricket

Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka Live Cricket Score Asian Games 2014 semi-final: Rain interrupts play

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014: Hobart likely XI

Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings, 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: CSK likely XI

Gandhi Jayanti: Mahatma Gandhi’s cricket connections and an XI

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK), 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: KXIP likely XI

Asian Games Asian Games 2014 Barbados Tridents Cape Cobras Champions League T20 2014 CLT20 CLT20 2014 Dolphins India at Asian Games 2014 Kings XI Punjab KKR vs Dolphins Kolkata Knight Riders

Australia undergo grueling practice session ahead of UAE tour

Live Scorecard: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

Live Cricket Score: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

Live Streaming: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

HPCA still awaits security clearance for India-West Indies 4th ODI

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), CLT20 2014 2nd semi-final: Key battles

Australia’s ODI team faces a dilemma for the first time in 30 years

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014: Hobart likely XI

Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings, 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: CSK likely XI

Gandhi Jayanti: Mahatma Gandhi’s cricket connections and an XI

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

671 Posts | 6 Fans

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Kings XI Punjab- Final Match Highlights from IPL 2014

iOS 8 reportedly causing Bluetooth connectivity issues: Report

Internet in Iran, a daily struggle against censorship

Asian Games 2014: Indian men’s kabaddi team in 7th consecutive final

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), CLT20 2014 2nd semi-final: Key battles

NGOs pursue education for all

Devotees perform Kumari puja across Bengal

Ebola in Liberia: First staffer dies of ‘probable’ Ebola, says UN

Bang Bang movie review: Hrithik Roshan and Katrina Kaif’s chemistry makes this action flick worth watching!

Revealed: Sonam Kapoor looking daintier than ever for Prem Ratan Dhan Payo!

Asian Games 2014 Live Updates: Defending Champions India through to Kabaddi Finals of both men and women events respectively

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here