London. Oli Pope was England’s problem solver in the fourth Test between India and England at the Oval. At one time the team lost 5 wickets for 2 runs. But the Pope held on to one end. He first added runs for the sixth wicket with Johnny Bairstow and then added 1 runs with Meenan Ali (5) to give the team a crucial 99-run lead. Pope was given a chance in Play-11 to replace Jose Butler in this match. Butler is going to be a father again. That’s why he didn’t play the Oval Test. However, Pope played an 81-run innings to justify the England team management’s decision.
At the end of the second day’s play, Pope said, “It’s a pleasure for me to score a half-century at home.” Returning was not easy for me. I’ve learned to ignore frustrating things. That’s why I was able to make a successful comeback. The January 2-year-old batsman, who scored his first century in South Africa in January 2020, has failed to turn his start into a big score this year. His best score this year was 34 against India in Chennai in February, before he also scored 81 off 159 balls.
Hard to be in and out of the group: Pope
He further said that it is difficult (to stay in and out of the team), I felt it was sometimes frustrating. Honestly, it’s a learning opportunity. I’ve learned to deal with frustrating things. I want to be as confident as possible about my game, ignoring other things.
‘My career was a stop-start’
“My career has been a ‘stop-start’,” he said, recalling a shoulder injury sustained during the third Test against Pakistan in August 2020. I started my work about four years ago. During this time, I did many times in and out of the team and also did shoulder surgery. He had to stay out of the game for about four months due to this shoulder injury.
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Root can be seen in Pope’s batting
A glimpse of the root can be seen in Pope’s batting. He himself considers the English captain as his role model. He told Root about his batting. Pope also batted in root style at the Oval. He stayed on the pitch and as soon as he got the bad ball he hit a hard shot on it. He hit four fours in a row with the ball of Shardul Tagore. Root is batting similarly throughout the series. He spends time at the crease and whenever he gets a weak ball, he never misses a chance to run into it.
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‘Reg regrets not being able to score a century at the Oval’
Pope’s batting average of 101.8 in 19 innings at the Oval is disappointing to miss a century against India. He said it was my first Test at home and it was a really special occasion for me. You dream of scoring a century in front of an audience on your home field. Hope to get some more opportunities in the future. But for now, I’m happy to contribute to keep the team in good shape.
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