After a 4-0 hammering in the recently concluded Ashes series, England will no doubt be feeling quite sorry for themselves. Post-mortems would have begun with answers at a premium after rolling over easily and not showing the hunger that is required on the battlefield of Test cricket. There won’t be much time for Trevor Bayliss and his charges to lick their wounds as the ODI series gets underway only a week after the SCG test.
Captain Joe Root will be scratching his head and wondering just how this has all played out so disastrously. The young batsman would have been aware of the severe challenge that awaits any English team visiting Australia but seeing it through the eyes of a captain and leader will have given him a new sense of appreciation of the task at hand.
After every fall follows the act of rising up and England can and must do that during the 50-over contests. The shorter format will improve England’s chances with individual heroics of ODI cricket nullifying the strategy and attrition required in tests that England so badly lacked. The Three Lions will receive a new leader as Eoin Morgan comes into the touring party to take over as captain from Joe Root. Morgan who was born in Dublin has his work cut out for him.
Getting the better of the Australians in ODI’s is anything but a given even if the playing fields have levelled out a bit. Darren Lehmann’s men also have momentum on their side and go in as favourites with the hosts backed at 4/11 in cricket betting to win the series. Morgan will be tasked with ensuring his charges go into the ODI competition with a fresh mindset. A lot easier said than done but another capitulation Down Under could tempt the ECB to make wholesale changes.
Change across the board is not advisable according to James Anderson and to a degree, England’s leading wicket-taker has a point. Knee-jerk reactions seldom bring out long-term stability and England will know that the answer to their problems lies in more application and determination rather than elimination.
England has enjoyed good success in ODI’s since 2016 and have won seven of the last eight series they have played in. That is where they carry the most threat and have explosive power players in the ranks that can help begin to salvage some pride for the nation.
Part of the success the English ODI side has experienced has been down to the fearless cricket they have played. Their top order batsman refuse to be dictated to and prefer to control the pace of the game. This type of aggressive approach is exactly what England need at this moment in time.
If England arrives at the MCG for the first ODI with the same desire and fight they showed throughout the Ashes series then another pummelling is on the cards regardless of how talented their side may be. The entire narrative can change if the players show a hunger and willingness to win against an Australian side that will be determined to inflict further pain and misery.