OPINION: What Should England Do Now?

South Africa have just won a famous victory over England in the 2nd ODI, thanks to the inspired selection of 16-year-old rookie Laura Wolvaardt; and later the fearless batting of Marizanne Kapp and Lizelle Lee, in a chase that looked like it was going to be an uphill struggle after the returning Danni Hazel had dismissed Trisha Chetty and Mignon du Preez in the space of two balls in the 33rd over.

The only South African to “fail” with the bat was du Preez herself who made 9… which was still one more than Lauren Winfield, Amy Jones and Sarah Taylor put together!

And let there be no doubt that this was a match England could really have done with winning. Moving towards the business end of the Women’s International Championship, they are now in very real danger of falling into a nasty scrap for 4th place, which will not be a fun position to be in come the reckoning.

So what should England do now?

The England of “yesterday” would have hit the big red button: Winfield would have been dropped down the order… and Jones would probably have been dropped off at the airport!

The England of “today” must resist this temptation. Assuming Katherine Brunt’s injury isn’t serious, they need to go into the 3rd ODI with exactly the same team, batting in exactly the same order, to exactly the same plan!

Or in short, in the immortal words of LCpl Jones: “DON’T PANIC!”

It won’t always come off – even Australia lose occasionally – but these are the best players we’ve got. They just need to know that the world believes in them, before they can start to believe in themselves; and the best way to achieve that is to do… absolutely nothing!

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4 thoughts on “OPINION: What Should England Do Now?

  1. The bowlers let us down today.

    England have to look at their opening bowling tactics, and need more wicket takers rather than trying to get wickets through run rate pressure. This has been a common theme of late and it’s starting to affect results. Alarm bells should be ringing in Robinson’s ears over England’s ODI form, and failing to reach the top 4 spots in the ICC ODI Championship is now a real possibility, particularly if it doesn’t go our way on Sunday.

    The stats are telling. In our last 4 ODIs, England have only taken the first 2 wickets at the following scores: 2-103 (23.1 ovs), 2-87 (26.4), 2-119 (30.3), 2-134 (32.3). This puts our side at a disadvantage because in each case, the opposition is able to get about 100 runs, or reach about halfway through their innings, before they are 2 down; and thus are able to throw the bat with abandon as they progress towards the end.

    It should then come as no surprise to hear that we lost 3 out of 4 of those matches. Run rate pressure is quickly becoming not enough, with the faster run rates starting to come into the game. We need more pace bowlers, bowling quick and straight for when Brunt or Shrubsole have an off day or injury. Cross coming back doesn’t fill me with confidence, given her lean run of form since last summer. Hence my previous suggestion to promote Farrant. Elwiss also may be a possibility.

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  2. The constraints of the existing squad mean there is no real drastic form of action England can take. MR is working with the constraints of a regime of the last decade and sadly it shows in every facet of their game – run rates, fielding and bowling strategies.

    I believe he is a good appointment but the ECB can’t wait for a WCSL sized miracle to find players for him to work with. The whole system needs a root and branch review.

    In the mean time the existing squad will have our support with a caveat you are all playing for your futures as an England player – what more motivation do you need?

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