Style v substance: England must be encouraged to play exciting cricket
'Winning counts but you can do it with a swagger'
Last Updated: 07/05/14 4:49pm
Alastair Cook's outfit won last summer's Ashes on home soil by a comprehensive 3-0 scoreline, but were criticised afterwards by Australia coach Darren Lehmann, who branded the side's gameplan as "dour".
England proceeded to get whacked 5-0 in the return contest Down Under this winter, and Cork feels his country's attritional methods were partly to blame for their heavy reverse.
And whilst analysing the style versus substance debate on What's The Story?, which has hit the headlines after Jose Mourinho adopted a defensive gameplan in Chelsea's Premier League win at Liverpool, Cork said he wants English cricketers to play more colourfully from a young age.
"England had a one-dimensional way of winning under Andy Flower and sometimes in a team sport I think you need to progress a little bit quicker, react and have a plan B, C and D," said the onetime all-rounder.
"England didn't do that as their plan was to just stay in a game and while perhaps the senior players could have helped adapt the tactics, I think the ECB need to take responsibility.
"One criticism I have of the way we coach cricket is that sometimes it is so one-dimensional, when we need to make sure we bring flair and no fear to cricket, like we see with lots of Asian players.
"We are very straight line when sometimes we need to teach people to bowl a different way."
Former British female tennis number one Annabel Croft, meanwhile, believes winning is the most important factor in sport, but feels that the more exciting tactics Andy Murray deployed whilst he was coached by Ivan Lendl actually made him a more dangerous player.
"Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is flamboyant and people will go out of their way to go and see him and we have another player like that now in tennis Fabio Fognini, who is a great character, with the chat, looks and swagger," said Croft.
"But winning is what counts and when someone like Murray, who is very passive on court and will do absolutely everything within his power to win matches, looks back at his career and realises he has won Wimbledon and the US Open that is all that will matter.
"However, Lendl, who coached Murray during his two Grand Slam wins, made him more aggressive and I think those changes have helped him achieve what he has."