Ashes 2013: Stuart Broad can handle being ‘hate figure’ says captain Alastair Cook

 

If it starts to get ugly during the second Test, it is probable that the bloke with the baby face will be around. Stuart Broad always seems to be involved when it is all going off out there.

Alastair Cook, England’s captain, was obliged to leap to Broad’s defence yesterday after his reputation took another nosedive in the first Test. Broad was at the centre of heated  debate after he declined to walk in England’s second innings when replays showed he had edged the ball.

The fact that probably all 21 of the other players would not have admitted it – umpire Aleem Dar gave him not out – merely accelerated the rush of pundits to the moral high ground. Broad then compounded his felony on the last morning by appearing to waste time just before lunch, removing his boot for running repairs, to try to ensure that England did not have to bowl another over at an Australia side nearing their target.

Cook said: “He has always been a very combative cricketer and that is one of his great strengths. He is a great fighter. I think that is one of the reasons he has been so successful in international cricket.

“What happens off the field, whether you call him a hate figure or whatever, there is always one person on either side – it was Ricky Ponting a few years ago. If it is Broady, it’s Broady. He is a fine cricketer and he can deal with anything.”

Whether England care that it might affect how they are perceived by  supporters and neutral followers is doubtful. They know that what Broad brings to the side seems to make him a more effective cricketer.

He has the happy knack of rising above it, or at least of not being remotely affected. There have been several incidents over the years when he might have handled himself better on the field – the double teapot gesture to team-mates, his occasional gamesmanship towards opponents – but he has remained a feisty competitor.

“Every time he has fought for his place or been under pressure he has always delivered for us,” said Cook. “I am very surprised how much controversy it’s caused but the most important thing is that both sets of players don’t seem too fussed about it.”

Broad, who has recovered fully from the blow on the shoulder he took while batting in England’s first innings at Trent Bridge, was rampant at Lord’s last time out. He dismantled New Zealand’s second innings by taking 7 for 44, achieving bounce, movement and pace.

He has made a habit of this sort of spectacular spell throughout his Test career. Cook pointed out that at The Oval in 2009 Australia had reached 72 for 0 when Broad pounced with five quick wickets which helped  reduce them to 111 for 7 and eventually to 160 all out.

“That pretty much launched his Test career,” said Cook. “I think he wouldn’t be half the player he is without that edge he’s got. He loves the competition, it brings out the best in him and actually a lot of his spells when he has taken five wickets very quickly have come when England have needed them the most.”

Broad will probably open the bowling with Jimmy Anderson for the 30th time. His shoulder injury prevented him taking the new ball in Nottingham. Only Steve Harmison and Matthew Hoggard (33 occasions) and Brian Statham and Fred Trueman (35) have shared the new ball more often for England.

When they gel, England usually win. Broad is likely to become the 15th England bowler to reach 200 Test wickets during the match and if Anderson’s potent form continues, Australia will be in trouble.

Cook said: “Jimmy is our best bowler, his record suggests that, and there will be times he is bowled because he is our best bowler, but it is a dangerous thing to take the other guys lightly.”

News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
News
i100
Life and Style
The spring/summer 2015 Louis Vuitton show for Paris Fashion Week
fashion
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?