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Entertaining v Effective

The debate over entertaining versus winning performances is as old as the hills but has taken new life under the régime of Stokes and McCallum.

There were real and genuine fears that Australia would be too good for England, but less so after Zak Crawley – one of England’s perceived weaknesses – struck the first delivery of the day by  Pat Cummins to the boundary fence.

The Aussie field withdrew to more defensive positions.

England boldly declared at 381-7 to have a go at the Aussie openers.

It did not work but I did not read much criticism either.

Alistair Cook and Joe Root were world class batsmen, but not captains.

Stokes, by contrast, takes the game to the opposition and is reactive, not resigned.

It does not end there.

In the week  Ivan Conway wrote that Sussex’s sporting declaration was certainly not endorsed by everyone although it led to a thrilling draw.

Our Harlequin fans extol their cavalier style of play though it’s the pragmatic Saracens that win more.

Alan Tanner’s Fulham and Rex Mitchell’s Brentford attract many admirers though neither qualified for European competition.

For me sport is an entertainment.

Gareth Southgate is a totally decent intelligent human being but not a risk taker.

We often hear its a ‘results business’, but is it? José Mourinho is running out of friends after his losing Europa League final.

I end with the famous quote of Danny Blanchflower

The great fallacy is the game is about winning. It is not. It is about glory …



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About Tom Hollingworth

Tom Hollingsworth is a former deputy sports editor of the Daily Express. For many years he worked in a sports agency, representing mainly football players and motor racing drivers. Tom holds a private pilot’s licence and flying is his principal recreation. More Posts