England v India: England coach Peter Moores looking for right balance ahead of World Cup
Last Updated: 02/09/14 6:08am
Peter Moores says England are looking for the right balance as his side target a draw in the one-day series with India to build momentum ahead of next year's World Cup.
England have suffered two heavy defeats against India in the one-day international series so far, and need to win at Edgbaston on Tuesday and Headingley on Friday just to salvage a draw.
Failure to do so would mean a fifth successive one-day series defeat for captain Alastair Cook. Their only success in that time - aside from a one-off fixture against Scotland - came in Cook's absence, when Stuart Broad was captain in the West Indies last spring.
Moores has been coach for only one of those series setbacks, at home to Sri Lanka this summer, and although India are the new No 1 side in ODI cricket the manner of defeats are still embarrassing.
With less than six months before the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, Moores has significant issues to address, mainly the batsmen's failure to cope with India's spinners, amid claims England's approach is outdated.
Back in time
"When people say 'you're going to go back and play like England in the 19 whatevers', that's not what we're doing,” said Moores. "We're pretty clear on a strategy to go and be successful. We have to find the right people to put that in place.
"But 50-over cricket isn't quite the same as people just walk out and whack it. The best sides don't do that either."
The Moores template is one that takes account of the statistics to which England once seemed entirely wedded but also asks players to think on their feet and assess whether it is time to sit in or hit out.
"We have seen the game changing in the way people are striking the ball, and we've got to get the balance right in our side," he said.
"We've also got to believe in ourselves in what we're building towards, both as a coach and a team, so we find a style of play that can be successful against the best sides.
"But we've got to work fast. We've got to accelerate the development of the team quicker than might be normal to get ourselves really competitive by the World Cup."
In a spin
England's two defeats against India have seen them lose 13 wickets to spin, but Moores is confident they have batsmen who are capable of much better.
"Playing spin is an area where we want to improve," he said. "We've got some good players of spin - like (Ian) Bell, Cook and (Eoin) Morgan - but we have to deliver in a one-day game.”
He also believes Cook, Bell and Joe Root all have the ability to up their tempo.
"If you look at any top-flight team you've got a couple of guys in the top order who are striking somewhere round about 90 and are averaging about 50. We've got players who can do that.
"There's been lots of talk about scoring 300. But that doesn't happen all the time, and in certain different conditions you have to score what is a winning score on that pitch."