Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here

Home > Features >

England must find a way to shed their mental block against Australia

Alastair Cook-led England side have struggled to make their mark in Australia © Getty Images
Alastair Cook-led England side have struggled to make their mark in Australia © Getty Images

 

By Abhijit Banare

 

Australia have too many players suffering from the psychological damage of playing against this England team. In 2009 England won with a side containing Alastair Cook, Graeme Swann, Ian Bell, Kevin Pietersen, James Anderson, Matt Prior and Stuart Broad. The same players were there in 2010-11 when England won 3-1 in Australia, winning by an innings on three occasions. Now Australia are 2-0 down after two games against the same side. Michael Clarke, Shane Watson, Phil Hughes, Steve Smith, Peter Siddle and Brad Haddin only know failure against England”

 

These were the exact words by Michael Vaughan in his column for The Telegraph in July 2013 when Australia were outclassed in the first leg of the Ashes.

 

Time flies fast. It’s hard to fathom that in just six months the same theory now applies to England and Alastair Cook as a captain too. Mitchell Johnson instilled fear in the first half of the Ashes 2013-14 and from thereon, England are in a self-destruction mode on their own. Johnson suddenly looked like a threatening bowler even before he bowled the first match of a Test. England would have been relieved to end the painful Test series.

 

But there was a always a fear that the result may have been left behind not the mindset. There was a renewed vigour in the first One-day International (ODI) which was punctured by Aaron Finch. Just when things brightened up in the second game with Australia nine down for 250 odd, England once again squandered an opportunity. It wouldn’t be completely fair to say that England choked, but one can be assured that in the last three overs, there was a sense of deja vu for England. Faulkner had already won half the battle in the mind by bludgeoning sixes, shots which landed on the first tier of an already large ground.

 

There was no rocket science involved that it was England’s match to lose at Brisbane. At 244 for nine, Australia’s chances were as slim as James Anderson surviving a Mitchell Johnson over. Eventually, it is the confidence that decided the outcome. James Faulkner, had just one option left i.e. to swing his arms to almost every ball and hope Clint McKay survives.

 

 

The consecutive sixes in the 45th over by Ben Stokes just fuelled Faulkner’s positivity which resulted in his six-hitting spree. The world cricket has now realised that Faulkner is turning out to be the most frustrating player an opposition could ask for. It’s not once, but thrice he has shown how effective he can be at the end. Two of the three situations have resulted in a win.

 

More than Faulkner’s wild swings, it was the bowlers inability to get their length right. Faulkner stood like he was there to win the game whereas, England looked as though they were hoping someone will finish off the tail eventually and in the end, none could. There’s nothing new in what unfolded at Brisbane. It was a clear distinction between a team playing like a winner and the other hoping for win.

 

Where do England go from here?

 

There’s no denying that England will likely lose the Sydney encounter once again and the series. As Vaughan suggested six months back about Australia, in contrast, England need a change of guard. If they had to take some positives from the second ODI, it was the two batsmen who didn’t feature in the Test series — Eoin Morgan and Jos Buttler who were impressive. Considering the situation of the team, one can infer that these two players were playing without baggage. But it would take more than two players to win the game.

 

(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)

 

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 17, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 18, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Dubai

More

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 16, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Kolkata Knight Riders won by 41 runs

Womens World T20, 2014

Apr 6, 2014  at Dhaka

Australia Women won by 6 wkts

T20 WC 2014

Apr 6, 2014  at Dhaka

Sri Lanka won by 6 wkts

Womens World T20, 2014

Apr 4, 2014  at Dhaka

England Women won by 9 wkts

T20 WC 2014

Apr 4, 2014  at Dhaka

India won by 6 wkts

Photos

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge play cricket

Videos

Video Highlights: Mumbai Indians vs Kolkata Knight Riders wickets

IPL 7: Vintage Jacques Kallis showed his class for Kolkata Knight Riders against Mumbai Indians

IPL 2014: Onus on Chris Gayle to take Royal Challengers Bangalore all the way

IPL 2014: Capacity crowd at UAE provides glimpse of the T20 league’s huge following

Narendra Modi’s tea-vendor origin influences MS Dhoni in calling laundrymen to clean up BCCI mess

Delhi Daredevils vs Royal Challengers Bangalore IPL 2014 Preview: RCB have advantage over DD sans Kevin Pietersen

Australia BCCI Delhi Daredevils England India IPL IPL 7 IPL 2014 Kolkata Knight Riders Lasith Malinga Moments in history Mumbai Indians Royal Challengers Bangalore Sachin Tendulkar

JP Duminy takes Delhi Daredevils to 145/4 against Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL 2014

Kings XI Punjab’s David Miller hopeful of winning IPL 2014

Delhi Daredevils (DD) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), IPL 2014: JP Duminy reaches half-century

Sunrisers Hyderabad announce Spicejet as their IPL 2014 sponsor

Delhi Daredevils (DD) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), IPL 2014: Ross Taylor, JP Duminy hold fort Delhi Daredevils

Former Australia PM Robert Menzies used cricket to win a case as a lawyer

Naoomal Jaoomal: The man who opened batting in India’s first ever Test

Sony launches ‘IPL Smart Earphone’ to filter crap commentary; calls endeavour CSR

IPL Statistics and Records: IPL’s First

IPL 2014: Umpire Camera View creates latest buzz in tournament

Fan of the Day

Sudatta Mukherjee

Sudatta Mukherjee

1 Posts | 0 Fans

Mumbai Indians vs Kolkata Knight Riders IPL 2014 Video Highlights

After Salman Khan and Aamir Khan being angry with AAP, Anurag Kashyap upset with BJP!

Google Glass could soon assist surgeons

Suffer from hemophilia and planning to conceive?

Nokia Lumia 2520 sales suspended due to issue with faulty charger

Kidney damage in diabetics — causes, symptoms, treatment, complications and prevention

Delhi Daredevils (DD) vs Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), IPL 2014: Ross Taylor, JP Duminy steady Delhi Daredevils

Sonakshi Sinha, Karisma Kapoor and Malaika Arora attend Arjun Kapoor and Alia Bhatt’s 2 States special screening – View pics!

Naoomal Jaoomal: The man who opened batting in India’s first ever Test

Also on cricketcountry.com