CRICKET; England hierarchy happy with Atherton's hook

ENGLAND WILL instruct Michael Atherton to carry on hooking if he believes that is the best way to combat the new-ball threat of Glenn McGrath when their personal duel resumes in the second Test at the WACA tomorrow.

Atherton was dismissed for 28 in the first Test in Brisbane when McGrath snared him for the 11th time in their last eight matches, on this occasion caught at fine leg before England were saved from defeat by an electrical storm.

It was the fourth time in 15 months Atherton had fallen victim to the hook shot - and one McGrath is happy to see him play in his bid to continue his stranglehold over a batsman the Australians have nicknamed "cockroach" because of the difficulties they normally have in "stamping" him out.

But neither England coach David Lloyd nor captain Alec Stewart will instruct Atherton to cut out the shot and will be happy to see him hooking at will on Perth's pacy and bouncy pitch. "I wouldn't insult his intelligence," said Lloyd. "He's got nearly 6,000 Test runs and if he is happy hooking then I'm sure he knows what he's doing. Before McGrath got him out, Athers hooked two or three times very well in Brisbane - I was more concerned with one or two of our tailenders who came in and tried hooking first ball thinking they were Roy Fredericks."

Lloyd's view is shared by Stewart, who insisted: "He can play as he wants. He will play his own way, and everyone in this squad will have their own game plan - just because you get out doing one thing, you don't have to stop doing it.

"The ball that got him out went away from him, and he ended up dragging it from outside off stump - and that's why it ended the way it did. That shot has got him a lot of runs, and he will weigh up how much success and how much failure it brings him."

The England thinking is likely to come as music to McGrath's ears on a rock hard pitch. "I've never really played on it when it's been a normal pacy WACA wicket, and it's important not to get carried away on it," said McGrath.

"It's easy to do that with bouncy wickets, putting it in short and watching it fly through to the wicketkeeper, but you don't want to fall into that trap."

HOW McGRATH HAS TAMED ATHERTON

Michael Atherton has been dismissed by Glenn McGrath 11 times in the last eight Tests in which they have both played.

February 1995, Perth

c Healy b McGrath 4

c Healy b McGrath 8

June 1997, Edgbaston

c Healy b McGrath 2

not out 57

June 1997, Lord's

c Taylor b McGrath 1

hit wicket b Kasprowicz 77

July 1997, Old Trafford

c Healy b McGrath 5

lbw b Gillespie 21

July 1997, Headingley

c Gillespie b McGrath 41

c Warne b McGrath 2

July 1997, Trent Bridge

c Healy b Warne 27

c Healy b McGrath 8

August 1997, The Oval

c Healy b McGrath 8

c S Waugh b Kasprowicz 8

November 1998, Brisbane

c M Waugh b McGrath 0

c Fleming b McGrath 28

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
peopleMathematician John Nash inspired the film Beautiful Mind
News
Richard Blair is concerned the trenches are falling into disrepair
newsGeorge Orwell's son wants to save war site that inspired book
Life and Style
Audrey Hepburn with Hubert De Givenchy, whose well-cut black tuxedo is a 'timeless look'
fashionIt may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
Arts and Entertainment
The pair in their heyday in 1967
music
Life and Style
fashionFrom bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine