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Roy ‘selflessness’ deserves loyalty – Farbrace

June 8th, 2017 | by admin
Roy ‘selflessness’ deserves loyalty – Farbrace
Australia
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Jason Roy’s “selflessness” is likely to see him retain his place in the England side for their final Champions Trophy group-stage match against Australia.

Roy has failed to pass 20 in his last eight ODI innings and, in that period, has suffered five single-figure dismissals. With Jonny Bairstow in outstanding form for club and country – he has scored three half-centuries in his last four ODI innings and smashed a career-best List A score of 174 when opening the batting for Yorkshire at the start of May – Roy’s place has been under increasing pressure.

But Paul Farbrace, England’s assistant coach, appreciates Roy’s commitment to the aggressive approach that has been at the heart of this team’s improvement over the last couple of years and feels it is important such behaviour is encouraged by a consistent selection policy that recognises the inherent risks involved in batting in such a manner.

“One of the things we’ve been very consistent on is selection,” Farbrace said. “Whatever length of one-day series we’ve played, we’ve tried to stick to the same players as much as we can.

“Playing for the team, as opposed to playing for themselves or for their place, definitely has a lot to do with the consistency of selection which enables batsmen to play with that confidence.

“They know that if they miss out for a couple of games through playing for the team they’re not going to get left out of the side.

“They know they’re going to be playing in the next game. Very often, if you play in the first game of the series you pretty much know you’re going to play that whole series. And if you have a tough series, you’re going to be back for the next one. I think that contributes massively to the confidence.

“Jason Roy epitomised that selflessness when we came back from the 2015 World Cup in the series against New Zealand. He played in the way we want people to play, and that’s continued ever since.

“Every player wants to take wickets and score runs and Jason is no different. But we’ve been consistent with our selections and we’ve stuck by people when they haven’t been taking wickets or scoring runs, and it’s always paid dividends when it’s happened. I don’t see Jason being any different.”

The manner of Roy’s recent dismissals may have increased pressure upon him. In the match against Sri Lanka he was caught at fine leg attempting a scoop, while in the match against New Zealand he lost his leg stump after moving across to the off side in an attempt to hit through midwicket. Both shots look ugly when they don’t come off.

But Farbrace made the point that, if England are going to encourage their players to take bowlers on, they have to accept there will be times the high-risk strokes don’t come off.

“The only thing I wish he would do is keep hitting the middle of the bat,” Farbrace said. “There is a risk in shots you play but what you try and learn is what are high-risks and what are good risks to take.

“He has walked across his stumps in the past and put people over square leg or flipped them over fine leg, and those shots have come off for him and been good. He’s not getting out to shots he hasn’t played, but when you’re not playing well they do look like tough dismissals.

“There’s an element of trust and reward for him in the sense that he’s gone and played the way we wanted at all times,” he said. “You stick with people when they’ve played in a certain way. At no stage has he ever tried to get runs for himself to keep himself in the next game.

“He’s always played in the way we want him to play as a team and I think you stick by people in that case. You just have to keep backing them.”

While Farbrace insisted Roy’s form in training looked fine, he did hint that his place will be reviewed before the semi-final if he fails again on Saturday.

“We’re not saying we’re not bothered by him and we are watching him carefully,” Farbrace said. “And if he started scratching around in training, if he started doubting himself, then that’s the time you do have to think carefully.

“But everything he’s doing, and the way he’s doing it, suggests he’s not too far away from a score. We haven’t seen anything about him that suggests he is struggling for confidence. I don’t see any point in making changes before the semi-final next Wednesday.”

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