Alastair Cook © Getty Images
Alastair Cook has the task of rebuilding England’s fortunes in ODIs © Getty Images

Nov 23, 2014

England‘s second and final practice match, ahead of their seven-match One-Day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka, was washed out due to rain in Colombo. England were to play Sri Lanka A on Sunday, but the outfield was wet and it kept raining. England had won their first practice game against Sri Lanka A the other day and that will be the only game they will have before going into the ODI series.

Mark Ramprakash, England’s newly appointed batting coach, was positive despite the washout. He organised a practice session as the square was fine. Speaking to England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) official website, Ramprakash said, “The players are very good and focused in their practice and they realise that when it’s not raining that they need to get the most out of their practice in the nets.”

Ramprakash did say that it was disappointing that they could not play the game. England wanted to blood in a few players before the series and allow them a hit in the middle. “It’s disappointing (the washout). It means some players will be going into an international game without having had an innings since September which is clearly not ideal. We came out here knowing that cricket tours have been affected at this time of the year by bad weather. We can’t control that. We’ll try and put our players under pressure during their practice as much as we can to simulate playing in the middle but ultimately you can’t replicate that totally. It is a bit disappointing not to have this match,” Ramprakash said.

England will now play Sri Lanka in the first ODI at the R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo on Wednesday. This is an important part of England’s ICC World Cup 2015 build-up. After this series, they will be touring Australia to play a tri-series against the hosts and India.