Crawley defends technique with Ashes around the corner

Crawley defends technique with Ashes around the corner

During England’s dramatic 1-1 draw in New Zealand, Crawley hit just 58 runs in four innings, giving him a 27.60 average from 33 Tests.

An Ashes year adds to the players’ attention and with Jonny Bairstow speeding up his recovery from a broken leg late last summer, someone from the current squad will have to step down.

In both New Zealand Tests, Crawley was sacked for single digits in the first innings against a skilled bowling tackle, but the hitter insisted his defense wasn’t something he needed to work on.

“I have a good defensive technique,” said the 25-year-old. “When you play against the best teams in the world, it might seem like it’s not.

“It’s not something I have to work on. It’s something I must continue to support.

“Same as my aggressive game. I’m always trying to improve in all areas of my game, that’s a given.”

Brendon McCullum has continued to show confidence in Crawley throughout the winter, insisting disagreements are to be expected given his role as opener.

The England boss went one step further after the New Zealand series and after speaking to Ricky Ponting said the Australians respect Kent’s opener.

Crawley was consistently supported by McCullum, and he appreciated the support.

“It’s nice when people support you and think you’re a good player. I got a lot of support from many people for my game, but most importantly you have to support yourself, otherwise it won’t work.

“I definitely do. Last year wasn’t perfect but I had some good shots. I got two hundred last year, I was in the top 10 runs scorer.”

Crawley was eighth in terms of most Test runs in 2022 after scoring 844 points in 15 Tests.

He added: “But that probably wasn’t portrayed the way the press talked about me.

“But there are ups and downs in every career and especially in opening hitting and I stand behind myself and keep hitting every time.”

The five-game Ashes series begins in Edgbaston on June 16 and Crawley is hoping for a place in the England line-up after their dismal performance last time Down Under.

Crawley played three Tests as England collapsed to defeat, the Ashes lost cricket in just 12 days and Australia’s bowling put up a meager resistance.

During his three Tests, Crawley had a high score of 77 and he admitted there’s always more pressure during the Ashes.

“I definitely felt like I was in the Ashes Down Under, there was a lot more hype about it and it was just bigger and there seemed to be more media.

“It made me more nervous, it almost felt like my debut again, so I think that answers it, there’s just more hype around it and rightly so.

“It’s the greatest rivalry in Test match cricket, isn’t it?”

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