Robinson reveals brains behind 'umbrella field' for Usman Khawaja
The word 'umbrella field' has been viral ever since Ollie Robinson managed to outfox Usman Khawaja by drawing the Australian centurion out of his comfort zone on Day 3 of the Ashes 2023 opener in Edgbaston.
With Robinson placing an interesting ring-shape field infront of the bat, featuring three-man apiece on either side, before dismissing an advancing Khawaja with a yorker that hit the base of off-stump, there has been a growing sense of speculation on the 'umbrella field' ploy and who in the English camp came up with the idea.
For such was the impact of the tactic, cricket lovers were left mesmerised by England's thought process, operating with an out-of-the-box tactic to get under the skin of the otherwise unruffled and defiant Khawaja batting on 141 not out.
Many felt Robinson was the mastermind behind the ploy since he was seen chatting with skipper Ben Stokes before coming up with the umbrella setting to break one past Khawaja. However, the pacer revealed afterwards it wasn't him who invented the unique tactical plan for the Aussie opening bat.
Robinson discloses mastermind behind 'umbrella field' plan
Speaking to the press after the day's play got over on Sunday (June 18), Robinson said it wasn't the case of him asking for a different field from skipper Ben Stokes, but the captain himself bringing back a ploy that England briefly put to use during their successful 3-0 whitewash in Pakistan last winter.
While the flattest set of tracks in the land of hospitality may have inspired the 'umbrella field' back then, the slightly benign nature of the surface in Birmingham and the way Khawaja had been batting without an iota of trouble felt in the middle forced England to go back to their extraordinary tactic.
"I was trying to get him to play shots he’s not comfortable with. Before the ball, (Ben Stokes) said go back to Rawalpindi and Pakistan and the umbrella field," Robinson said.
"I've been practicing a bit of T20 recently, went to the yorker, and it came off. You have to be ready for all formats, and it was great that it came off in Test cricket," he added.