Lucknow, Oct 28: A lot was expected from England in the 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup, having re-defined the way of playing 50-over format by winning the trophy at home in 2019 after the shock first-round exit in the 2015 edition of the global event.
But the defending champions haven’t turned up in rip-roaring fashion in the ongoing competition, losing four out of five matches and are on the verge of missing the semi-finals. In their five matches of the World Cup, the batting is yet to turn up to the occasion, summed up by only five batters going past 50.
Marcus Trescothick, England’s assistant coach, admitted the side’s batting form hasn’t been as good as what it used to be in normal circumstances. “I think confidence, rhythm, whatever you want to call it - the form of the team hasn't been as good as what we normally have. Normally there's always one, maybe two people in that team who are going to get a hundred plus or a big score that's going to make a big difference.”
“Consistently within the course of this competition everybody has been out of form or not scoring the runs that you need to do so we understand that it comes and goes and we know what it is. It's trying to make sure we can get it right to find the feeling of what it is”
“If we get that right in the next four games, it will be exciting because they'll be hungry for runs and when we do it will be you know it'll be exciting for the team we're playing against,” he said in the pre-match press conference ahead of playing against India at the BRSABV Ekana Cricket Stadium.
Till now, England’s batters have made only 1139 runs and average a paltry 24.23, the lowest made by a team in the tournament till now. Their captain, Jos Buttler, is having a horror tournament – averaging only 19, as England come up against an unbeaten Indian team.
Trescothick insisted that message conveyed during batting conversations in the camp have been the same all along and it’s just a matter for the batters to read the situation well and get their execution right on a particular day.
“Well, I think more than first and foremost is you know we have an attitude to how we've gone about batting in the last many years since our white ball cricket has changed and evolved and it's always trying to be positive.”
“We're always looking to put pressure back on oppositions, bowlers, as much as we can while reading the situation and be smart in those situations. We've done it occasionally now, but we just haven't done it consistently with enough people really reading the situation, taking the right options, and then putting it all together to get that score.”
“So, it's pretty obvious when you haven't got players who haven't got the runs, form, and haven't got the backup of what they need to be doing. You can always question what we're trying to achieve. But the process and conversations have always been the same and they won't change whether we're playing the first or the last game. You're just trying to read the situation and get it right on the day.”
With England now placed second from bottom at the points table, Trescothick admitted everyone in the side is feeling the heat over the campaign being in tatters and conceded that it is very tough for them from a mathematical perspective to think of playing the semi-finals.
“Sitting on the sidelines, seeing the performances haven't been quite right. We've just not been matching up to the levels we expect. It's disappointing, of course it is. We're all feeling it. We're all feeling the heat and stuff. But what can you do?”
“We prepared the same, we've done things very similar to what you'd expect. Every practice we go through we're coming out the other side thinking we're in a good place and feeling quite right. It's just not quite worked then when we go into the games and got that right.”
“I don't think we're necessarily thinking about the competition as such. I think we're more focused on getting our performance right, getting the better levels of performance than what we've shown in the last few weeks. So, that sits over there and it will just look after itself. If it happens, it happens. We know it will be very challenging. Mathematically, it's still possible. But, it's very tough.” (IANS)