Stokes 'seriously impressed' by England second-string stars after series win

By Sports Desk July 13, 2021

Ben Stokes hailed England's hastily assembled squad after James Vince's maiden ODI century inspired a clean-sweep sealing victory over Pakistan.

England's preparation for the three-match home series was thrown into chaos last week when Eoin Morgan's first-choice squad were forced into isolation due to a COVID-19 outbreak.

Stokes had missed England's series with Sri Lanka due to a finger injury, but he returned to captain a new-look group.

It could hardly have gone better for England who, on the eve of the second anniversary of their World Cup triumph, mounted a record run chase in an ODI at Edgbaston to seal a 3-0 series victory on Tuesday.

Vince hit his first century in the format, a sparkling 102, while Lewis Gregory's 77 also helped England get over the line. Brydon Carse, who took a five-wicket haul, rounded off the win with a boundary down the ground.

While lauding the work of Morgan behind the scenes, Stokes praised the performances of England's second string, which proves the strength in depth at the world champions' disposal.

"Not just today, throughout the series, all the efforts of the guys have been fantastic," Stokes said in the post-match presentation.

"I keep reverting back to where we were last week, just got to give a massive thanks to all the players, all the coaches, support staff for still making this happen. It's been a tough week for everyone involved but we've managed to pull through – to put in performances like that is fantastic.

"A huge amount of credit has got to go to Eoin and Chris Silverwood for allowing the new guys to come in and go out and play in that manner, go out and impress which is what they asked them to do at the start of the series.

"Nobody has taken a backwards step, so so much credit has got to go to Eoin and the way he's built the team.

"This is the culture that Eoin and me try to create, allowing guys to go out there and play fearless cricket, even at the top of the order, Phil Salt has come in and given us that dynamic, so the most pleasing thing to me is nobody has been affected by the situation or the occasion, they've just gone out there, enjoyed themselves and had a great experience.

"It's the best place to be in. To have so many good players coming through, everybody has seriously put their hands up and got a few guys looking over their shoulders. Just seriously impressed with everyone throughout the series."

 

While Vince took his chance with the bat, Saqib Mahmood returned to England's set-up to star with the ball, with his nine wickets across the three ODIs seeing him named as player of the series.

"A pretty special week, to be able to repay that faith and perform the way I have, I'm really happy," Saqib said.

"I'll just take it as it comes, this time last week I was waiting to play for Lancashire, before you know it you're in an England shirt again, so I'll just take it as it comes."

England will name their squad for the upcoming Twenty20 series against Pakistan on Wednesday.

Related items

  • 'It's a major concern' - WI Women's team coach Walsh insists better strike rotation a priority 'It's a major concern' - WI Women's team coach Walsh insists better strike rotation a priority

    West Indies Women’s coach Courtney Walsh admits the team’s inability to properly rotate the strike was a disappointment during the recent series against South Africa, as it had been a key area of focus ahead of the games.

    The regional team just managed to avoid being on the wrong end of a sweep, after winning the final game of the series in a super over.  The 4-1 scoreline was, however, an accurate reflection of the fact that the West Indies Women had struggled to keep pace with the South Africans for the great majority of the One Day Internationals.

    One of those key areas was putting runs on the board, with the Windies Women on many occasions looking bogged down by South Africa’s bowling, before being dismissed after ill-advised shots.  On four occasions the team struggled to get to one 150, a target that seemed an easy reach for South Africa.

     “It’s a concern, the rotation of the strike, it’s something we’ve been talking about since the start of the camp but it was highlighted much more against South Africa,” Walsh told members of the media.

    “In terms of just hitting the fielders and not being able to find gaps, not being able to play with soft hands and we have identified that,” he added.

    “It has been an ongoing discussion before the series and it was one area I was disappointed in that we did not try to show that (strike rotation) because leading up to the series we had been practicing it, but match-day, which we get out in the middle it wasn’t done.  We just kept picking out the fielders.  It’s the sort of the thing you have to do in 50 over games if you want to really compete and it has to be addressed.”

     

  • ‘High-octane Windies squad built for excitement’ – but may not necessarily win World Cup ‘High-octane Windies squad built for excitement’ – but may not necessarily win World Cup

    Former wicketkeeper batsman Deryck Murray believes the Windies World Cup squad has been picked for maximum excitement regardless of whether or not they are capable of winning the tournament.

    The selection of the final team for the upcoming tournament has caused a torrent of discontent around the Caribbean, with strong opinions regarding which players should be included or left out making the rounds.

    Despite agreeing that leaving Holder out of the squad was a mistake, he believes the majority of the squad was put together over the last three months and has been selected along the lines of a certain philosophy.

    “You saw the team in various matches around and the Caribbean and you could see the pattern of players.  So, it was obvious that what the team has agreed to is what I call a very high-octane policy,” Murray told the Mason and Guest radio program.

    “West Indies are undoubtedly going to be the best team to watch, I’m not sure if they’ll be the best team to support, but every moment of every game they play is going to be exciting,” he added.

    “Every player is put in there to play a little cameo of some sort, batting bowling or whatever and it is going to be thrilling, people or going to be on the edge of their seats. To me what they’ve decided is these players are going to give us winner take all.”

    The West Indies have been placed in a difficult group alongside Australia, England and South Africa.

     

  • Tripathi leads the way as Kolkata crush Mumbai Indians Tripathi leads the way as Kolkata crush Mumbai Indians

    Kolkata Knight Riders recorded only their second win in the past 14 Indian Premier League meetings with Mumbai Indians in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.

    Eoin Morgan's side swept to an impressive seven-wicket victory after Mumbai had made a strong start through Rohit Sharma (33) and Quinton de Kock (55), having been put in to bat.

    The Knight Riders made the challenge of chasing 156 look all too easy, Rahul Tripathi (74) leading the way as they reached 159-3 with 29 balls to spare.

    An opening stand of 78 was finally broken when Sunil Narine (1-20) accounted for Rohit before Suryakumar Yadav went for the loss of just five runs.

    De Kock's solid 55 ended when he mishit the ball straight to Narine as Prasidh Krishna got his second wicket.

    Kieron Pollard (21) and Krunal Pandya (12) helped to stretch the Indians' score to 155-6, and Kolkata's chase looked in a little danger after Shubman Gill was skittled for 13 by Jasprit Bumrah (2-35).

    It proved a mere blip during an impeccable innings, though, as Venkatesh Iyer and Tripathi each reached stunning half-centuries while Morgan managed seven off eight balls before being caught by Trent Boult at the ropes.

    A commanding victory was secured in style, Nitish Rana reverse sweeping for four as the Knight Riders reached their target with almost five full overs left.

    TRIPATHI LEADS MASTERCLASS

    It would be easy to blame the Mumbai attack for the ease with which their score was hunted down, Kolkata managing 22 boundaries including eight maximums from only 15.1 overs.

    However, praise has to go to the batsmen – and Tripathi in particular – for some immaculate strokes as they finished with a run rate of 10.48.

    KNIGHT RIDERS GALLOPING TO PLAY-OFFS

    Kolkata are into fourth in the table after managing just a seventh win over the Indians in 29 IPL matches.

    With three victories from four, they look to be finding form at a critical moment in the competition.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.