ENG vs SA 2022: "It's becoming mentally detrimental to the player" - Mark Butcher baffled by England's endless backing of Zak Crawley

England & South Africa Net Sessions
Zak Crawley is under immense pressure going into the Manchester Test

Former England cricketer Mark Butcher was baffled by the hosts' decision to back under-fire opener Zak Crawley for the second Test against South Africa at Old Trafford. Crawley made it into the hosts' starting XI once again for the match which is set to begin on Thursday (August 25).

Despite having a highest score of 267, Crawley averages just 26.10 after playing 26 Tests. Many believe the opener's failure in the innings defeat against the Proteas at Lord's was going to be the end of the rope for the opener. Crawley scored just 22 runs across both innings.

However, captain Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum have continued to back him, which according to Mark Butcher, is damaging the opener mentally. Butcher believes Crawley needs a break to reflect on his technical issues.

Speaking on Sky Sports, he said:

"The main point of discussion about England centres around the opening batting. Zak Crawley at the top, he has been unequivocal backing by the management."

Butcher added:

"I am very much of the opinion that it is becoming mentally detrimental to the player, never mind what it is doing to the team in their prospect of putting regular scores on the board against a very fine bowling attack."
"That for me is the big issue" Mark Butcher on England's batting order ahead of today's second Test against South Africa ๐ŸThe second Test LIVE on Sky Sports Cricket and Main Event from 10am ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆ

Mark Butcher on England's lone change for second Test vs South Africa

England brought in Ollie Robinson in place of Matty Potts for the second Test against South Africa. Mark Butcher understood the change, but acknowledged that Potts has been impressive in his short Test career so far.

We lose the toss and bowl! ๐Ÿ”ด๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ #ENGvSA ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆ @LV_Cricket

However, Butcher had a tongue-in-cheek comment to make on the hosts making a change in their bowling department instead of batting. He stated:

"They have been trying to get Robinson back into the fold. Matty Potts has performed excellently since coming into the side earlier this summer against New Zealand. Bizzarely, England don't manage to bat 85 overs in the first Test match and it is a bowler who gets dropped (laughs)."

South Africa have notably won the toss at Old Trafford and have elected to bat first.

Can the hosts bury the ghosts of Lord's and make the 'BazBall' theory work to come roaring back into the series? Let us know in the comments.

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Edited by Anantaajith Ra
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