Who might have thought that the England team, who lost to Bangladesh in World cup 2015, will become such a brute force in matter of couple of months. That is why they say, failure sometimes will makes you a gem or breaks you in shambles. For the Barmy army, the former one stood true, and today they are one of the most ferocious team across all formats.
England had enjoyed their success in 5 day game but they had miserably failed to keep the momentum when it came to white ball cricket. But off lately, there has been a paradigm shift in the way things are going for them. Here are some points which has helped in rising of English cricket throughout:
1. Backing up players and showing trust on them had acted as a catalyst:
Be it Hales, Roy or Moeen Ali, all of them have received a good support form Board and has been always in the good books of the skipper. And consequently, players have undergone a sea change in their over-all demeanor. Hales now is not the same who used to just hit around for boundaries. A reflection of responsibility is quite clear in him and now he is a complete player as a limited overs opening batsmen. Same has been the case with Roy and others.
2. Simultaneous rise of good talents: With Stokes, Butler and Moeen Ali, each capable of putting serious blows on the opposition, coming into the scenario, the overall approach of the team has changed. The batting line-up looks rock solid with Hales and Roy opening followed by the one of the best of the contemporary time, Joe Root and his instilling support at number 4. Morgan controls the middle order batting and knows how to switch gears as when needed. Johnny Baristow and Billings also provides the much needed firmness with Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali following next with their handy batting capacity.
3. The formidable bench strength: If cricket was football, England would easily be the Real Madrid for the bench strength they have irrespective of the format of the game. Their resurgence is majorly due to support the players provide. Players take every opportunity as when they come and make it a point to perform. Billings, Rashid, Dawson etc grabs the opportunity as and when they come and this has put a message in the team that performance is the only key to stay.
4. Plethora of All-rounders: There cannot be any better sight for any team to have all-rounders in their teams who can perform in any situation. Just like India’s rise in whites has been largely attributed to the likes of Ashwin and Jadeja’s all-round abilities, same has been the case the English. Ben Stokes is much more capable with bat and ball alike. Moeen Ali has shown his prowess with both bat and ball during England tour to India. Willey has provided as good option when it comes to limited overs. All of them are the main characters behind English resurgence.
- Co-operative Management: England cricket director Andrew Strauss should also be given credit. It wouldn’t have been possible on his approach and the ECB’s application. Earlier English cricketer were not used to play in other countries’ domestic league,s which largely deprived them from getting the valuable experience overseas. This was reflected in their poor performance largely in sub-continent. Strauss made sure that this England team was sent on overseas tour on a regular basis and if not, the players feature in domestic leagues of these countries (Majority of English players playing IPL). Also, the sound domestic structure, helped them a lot for finding and nurturing requisite talent.
England’s test cricket few years ago was much cook-centric but with the arrival of new bunch of talents like Root, Stokes, Baristow, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes etc, the teams has got lot of match winners all at once. The start has been good for this resurgence. If the team is able to sustain the performance, both in their own soil and abroad, the team may wipe out the ironical tragedy engulfing English cricket, not to win any World Cup being the founder of the game.
Pic credits: ICC World, Iplt20.com