Eoin Morgan and new-look England face tough questions from New Zealand

时间:2019-08-15 责任编辑:吉谏 来源:云顶集团4008 点击:104 次

Eoin Morgan and shared a warm handshake and discussion on the eve of the one-day series between England and New Zealand. The two captains, who became friends at the IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders, will be adversaries once more as they were for a brief time at the World Cup, with England about to embark on a new chapter in the white-ball game amid much talk of a “new brand” of cricket.

McCullum was the model of relaxation at Edgbaston, Morgan the one facing the trickier questions. No wonder the Black Caps appeared so at ease; they have already settled in the Midlands with a round of golf at the Belfry and are preparing for a format in which they have excelled so impressively, thrashing England by eight wickets at Wellington four months ago and having edged the drawn two-Test series at Lord’s and Leeds in terms of performance.

For England, though, there is an air of uncertainty at how these matches will play out. The disastrous World Cup has already done for Peter Moores, but Morgan’s position remains intact for the foreseeable future after a vote of confidence from Andrew Strauss, the new director of cricket.

Morgan’s desire to draw a line under England’s World Cup campaign is obvious. The regularity with which he spoke of a new aggressive approach, a different brand – the new buzz word – was stark. For McCullum’s side it is a case of steady evolution. England require revolution.

Certainly England’s squad selection for these ODIs indicates as much given that Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ian Bell were all dropped for a series which begins on Tuesday in Birmingham. Instead, the likes of Surrey’s Jason Roy and Northamptonshire’s David Willey are expected to be given a chance while it is hoped Ben Stokes will bring his Test form into the one-day arena.

Trevor Bayliss, Moores’ replacement as head coach, will not arrive in England until the latter stage of this series, but Morgan is clear that he, Strauss and Bayliss all agree about the areas where England must improve. “It was just a matter of waiting to see if you were going to keep the job or not,” said Morgan when discussing the World Cup fallout before explaining why he believes the regime change will pay off. “Speaking with Andrew, his view is that there’s certainly going to be a difference between the Tests and the one-dayers. There’s going to be a bigger priority on one-day cricket, or white-ball cricket including T20s, and that’s the change that has made me think there is going to be progress here.

“It’s great to have that backing. Andrew is also on the same page as me, Farby [Paul Farbrace, the interim coach] and Trevor as to the direction in which we want to take this team and the brand of cricket that we want to play. We want to be unclouded in the way that we play and put opposition sides under pressure for as long as we can. For a long time now we’ve been behind the eight-ball on one-day cricket, we’ve fallen behind by a long way. It’s time for a catch-up.”

He added: “Being aggressive, 99% of it is having the players to set the standard and example of being aggressive. We struggled throughout the World Cup to do that simply because we didn’t perform well enough. The guys we have brought in do something different and we want that to continue.”

Whether New Zealand allow this new-look England to enter their stride is another thing altogether. The Kiwis are ranked third in the ICC’s ODI standings following some fine displays at the World Cup – they were beaten by Australia in the final – having undergone a remarkable transformation under McCullum and the coach, Mike Hesson, since being bowled out for 45 by South Africa in January 2013, the lowest Test score in almost 39 years.

A similarly significant turnaround is the target for Morgan, but England’s captain warned there will be bumps along the way if his team are allowed to play without fear and with aggression. He said: “It’s very important to recognise that it won’t come off all the time, but the intention of playing in the right manner is key and has to be key for a long period of time – if you ditch it after a few games it won’t work.”

England have five ODIs with which to experiment while for New Zealand Tim Southee and Corey Anderson are not expected to play at Edgbaston. Of England’s selection, McCullum said: “They will look to play an entertaining and aggressive brand of cricket. If they get some results with that early on I think they are going to be a really dangerous team. It’s a really good shift that they have made. I like the look of their team. They obviously missed some key opportunities at the World Cup, one-day cricket can be quite brutal if you don’t take those key opportunities, you can get exposed pretty quickly. That’s ultimately what happened.”