"I don't think they will be too distracted" - Trent Boult expects England to put social media controversy behind them

How will England respond on the field?
How will England respond on the field?
Wasiq Agha

Trent Boult has backed England to put the social media storm behind them when they take on New Zealand in the series decider on Thursday. The Blackcaps speedster feels England won't be too distracted by off-the-field matters.

The cricket fraternity has been rocked since Ollie Robinson’s 'racist' and 'sexist' tweets from 2012 and 2013 surfaced a few days ago. The fast bowler has been suspended from international cricket pending further investigation, while the England Cricket Board also revealed they are investigating a second unidentified player for posting "historic offensive material" on social media.

Trent Boult spoke to the media ahead of the second Test at Edgbaston and was sure England will be up to the task when they take to the field.

"I don't think they will be too distracted. There are a few things going on the sidelines. I'm sure they will be on the ball. They will be desperate to put in a good performance. These guys have played a lot of cricket. They are tremendous at home. I think they can put those things on the sideline and focus on the game,” Boult claimed.

Many former players have commented on Ollie Robinson’s actions, debating whether the ECB’s handling of the issue has been up to the mark. Although Trent Boult refrained from criticising Robinson, he admitted players need to be more careful about their actions on social media.

I can't speak for the other guys but social media can be a difficult world at the moment. You can approach anyone around the world. In terms of our profession as sports people, you are in the limelight non-stop. You have to be careful with what you are putting out there I suppose. We are obviously leaders in the world, role models for a lot of kids and fans around the world. There is a lot of accountability. It's a tricky one, you have to very careful,” Boult explained.

“I'm dying to get out there” – Trent Boult

While it was earlier thought that Trent Boult would be unavailable for the England series, a change in quarantine regulations has allowed the 31-year-old to start training early and put himself in contention for a spot. After getting some much needed rest, Boult is raring to return to international cricket.

“I'm here now and excited at the prospect of playing. I'm dying to get out there. I've been playing non-stop through the New Zealand summer and the IPL. The body feels good,” Boult said.

With the first Test drawn, a win at Edgbaston for New Zealand will hand them their first victory in England since 1999. Trent Boult praised the team’s efforts during the first Test as he looks forward to the second Test.

"There is an opportunity to win a Test series in England. It's been a long time. Looking forward to the challenge. I thought the guys played tremendously well at Lord's. The boys are gelling nicely and hopefully, it will be a big week,” Trent Boult concluded.

With Gary Stead confirming his intentions to rest his fast bowlers ahead of the World Test Championship final, Trent Boult is likely to come in for one of the Blackcaps pacers on Thursday.

Edited by Sai Krishna
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