Finn Allen is not producing enough at the moment: Craig Cumming

New Delhi:  Former New Zealand cricketer Craig Cumming believes young opener Finn Allen is “not producing enough” runs currently following his struggles in recent ODI series against India.

Allen, 23, debuted for New Zealand in ODIs in 2022 and notched up some impressive knocks against Ireland and West Indies. But of late, he hasn’t been at his best in the format, making scores of 29, 1 and 25 in the tour of Pakistan, followed by registering scores of 40 and consecutive ducks in the 3-0 series defeat in India.

“I’m concerned around the style of cricketers we’re trying to produce. You’ve just got to look at (Tuesday) night and when it comes to cricketers within our own country and the way we’re trying to produce it, I want to produce Devon Conway’s, I want to produce Kane Williamson’s; the guys that have got craft and can bat and they’ve got more than one (skill).”

“Finn Allen at the moment, yeah he’s young, he’s learning but (he’s in a) really important position for us at the top of the order and he seems to be at the moment a one-pace, one-line hitter.”

“(Tuesday) night was actually the perfect conditions but we need to – and we’re always used to with Martin Guptill there – at least get off to good starts, and his record is unbelievable. So yeah, at the moment I think it’s failing and maybe Finn’s getting the experience, I mean they’ve got to stick with him, but he’s not producing enough at the moment,” Cumming told SENZ Mornings.

Guptill, 36, was omitted from New Zealand’s white-ball squads shortly after the semi-final exit in Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia in favour of Allen. The veteran opener was then released from his New Zealand Cricket central contract to pursue opportunities overseas and is currently playing for Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash League (BBL).

With the experienced Guptill not there in the set-up, Cumming has urged New Zealand to focus on shaping Allen’s style of play in ODIs. “I’d like to see a little bit more craft when it comes to the way he’s playing and a little bit more craft when it comes to the cricketers we’re trying to produce.”

“What happened to being able to score all around the ground? What happened to being able to use the pace of the ball? What happened to being able to use skill and beat fielders on their left and right?”

“Even you look at Rohit Sharma and the way they (India) play, yes they’re powerful but they also have skill in the way they go about executing their plans and I just worry at the moment that Finn’s sort of been thrown into that mix where it’s one pace, batter up, it’s a baseball style mentality; try to hit home runs and that’s all we want.”

“I think we need more and in India, the surfaces, you get rewarded highly for good cricket and we’re just struggling with that and we’re always on the back foot from the start of the innings,” he concluded.

–IANS

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