Cricket Expert & Columnist
England must learn how to chase big scores to improve ODI fortunes, says Nick Knight
Nick Knight says England must assume more responsibility whilst batting in one-day internationals.
Last Updated: 01/03/14 12:02pm
Ashley Giles' side slipped to 15-run defeat in their opening game against West Indies in Antigua, despite seeming on course for victory with 13 overs remaining.
England, chasing a total of 270, were perched on 180-2 at the end of the 37th over, thanks in large part to openers Michael Lumb (106) and Moeen Ali (44) impressing on debut.
Once Lumb departed, to the seam of Ravi Rampaul, the visitors capitulated and ended their knock on 254-6, but Sky Sports pundit and former England batsman Knight was frustrated by his country's overall approach to batting.
"England got a good first 15 overs, but from that point onwards, when they lost a couple of wickets, the run rate went down, they put themselves under pressure and lost wickets in clusters.
"You look at the Joe Root contribution [37 runs off 48 balls] and wonder if he needed to be more purposeful and take control in the middle overs, while, although they were on debut and we shouldn't be too critical, you also look at the dismissals of Lumb and Ali.
"It has resulted in a real hammer blow again [following the disappointing defeats in Australia] and England have to get their heads around chasing scores of around 300 - which they may have had to do if Kieron Pollard, Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels has been playing - as scores are going to escalate."
Stuart Broad's charges reduced West Indies to 45-4 early in their innings but the hosts recovered and then thumped 85 runs from their last five overs courtesy of captain Dwayne Bravo (87 not out) and Darren Sammy (61).
Broad pinpointed the lax bowling as the reason for England's defeat in his interview during the post-match presentation, and while Knight disagreed, he was shocked the skipper did not grab the ball more in order to curtail the Windies' charge.
"I'm surprised Board [has apportioned blame to the bowlers] as it was a game England should have won with their batting and the fact they didn't come out on top is very disappointing," added the analyst.
"But England were poor with the ball and I don't know why Broad bowled only six overs, as he is the leader, England's best bowler and capable of producing very good yorkers and cross-seam deliveries.
"Broad not bowling enough was a mistake."