Anorak News | Looking To The Future

Looking To The Future

by | 19th, June 2003

‘ENGLAND have four years before the next World Cup arrives, by which stage the fact that they lost against Pakistan in their first match under Michael Vaughan’s captaincy will be long forgotten.

A welcome sight for England cricket fans

The challenge is to develop a group of players by 2007, all of whom have not only the ability but also the experience to compete with the world’s best.

The match on Tuesday night against Pakistan was just the first step on a long road, during which several names will no doubt fall by the wayside.

There are excuses for such a young side, but the batting was certainly a disappointment, especially after a decent start.

Andrew Flintoff is clearly a much batsman than a late-order slogger and promoting him to No.5 might help in the short term.

However, in the longer term, I suspect that England will have to find another top-order batsman who can bowl if the balance of the side is to be got right.

When Paul Collingwood is fit again, he will no doubt return to the side, but the danger is that England’s middle order will then consist of too many all-rounders and too few specialists.

Where England do look a decent side at the moment is in the bowling department.

Flintoff may not be the most penetrative bowler, but he is very hard to get away, as he demonstrated in the World Cup where he was the most economical of all the bowlers on display.

Darren Gough won’t be around in 2007, but at the moment he is still well worth his place in the side and will help bring along some of the youngsters.

James Anderson looks set to develop into an excellent player for England and will only get better the more games he plays.

Obviously, England will need to win their fair share of games while they are developing. Confidence, after all, is an important ingredient of a successful side.

But in the meantime, there is some truth in the old adage about winning not being as important as how you play the game.

Posted: 19th, June 2003 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink