Australia’s assistant coach Ricky Ponting believes that England’s out-and-out aggressive approach to one-day international cricket has probably not been suitable for a stage such as the World Cup.
“In the last few weeks, they haven’t played the way they would have wanted to,” Ponting told cricket.com.au, after England’s 64-run loss to Australia at Lord’s. “They haven’t made these 400-plus scores they have been talking about all the time. The scores have generally been a little bit lower in this World Cup, Justin [Langer] and I spoke about it earlier.
After winning four of their first five games at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, England stumbled to two consecutive losses while batting second. Despite boasting the tournament’s two highest totals (397 and 386), Eoin Morgan’s side has failed while chasing on three occasions, and on two of them, the target has been under 300.
“The tournament plays a lot differently from a regulation five-ODI series, where England have come out and hit some huge scores in the last two to three years,” Ponting said. “Was that game style going to stand up under pressure? We will have to wait and see in the next few games.
“They need to improve. They have a couple of big games to come, against India and New Zealand, they might have to play better than today (Tuesday) to win those games.”
On Tuesday, 25 June, England’s batting was undone by Jason Behrendorff and Mitchell Starc. The latter accounted for three of the top five batsmen, as the fast bowling duo’s new-ball burst reduced England to 53-4 inside 14 overs.
Ponting, a three-time World Cup winner, said that England will have to tinker their batting strategy based on the conditions on offer, and the opposition they are up against.
“Different conditions, different attacks - to come out and try and go really hard at Mitchell Starc upfront with the new ball is not an easy thing to do,” he said. “Joe Root has been as good as anyone in the tournament, but Starc got one right through him early. That’s up to them to work out. We have a game plan that will stand for us under pressure.”