Jack Leach says varied pitches key to England being regular force in Tests away from home
"We look at spinning pitches negatively but if it's seaming around we're not too bothered. That needs to be addressed."
Last Updated: 06/02/19 6:54pm
Jack Leach says playing on a variety of pitches in England would help the national side become a force away from home.
England slipped to a series defeat in the West Indies after coming unstuck on a surface in Antigua featuring variable bounce.
Joe Root's side were also blasted away on flat Australian decks during their 4-0 thumping in the 2017-18 Ashes series.
"We need to challenge people to be better at cricket rather than complain about pitches," said England and Somerset spinner Leach, whose home track at Taunton is renowned for offering sharp turn.
"I think the surface at Antigua, we'd have not come up against in the County Championship. That might not be possible.
"For me, we need players to experience different surfaces. It's important to change attitudes. That would strengthen our international teams in years to come. I think there probably isn't [enough variety in England].
"We look at spinning pitches negatively but if it's seaming around we're not too bothered. That needs to be addressed, how they mark pitches.
"I don't know if that comes from the top or the counties, but I think it's a big thing.
"There are very few times where you spend 150 overs in the field and it's a batting paradise.
"So as much as I think spinning pitches are important, I think playing on flat ones, too. You can't do things you haven't practised before."
Leach picked up 18 wickets in three Tests in November as England swept Sri Lanka 3-0 away from home.
The slow bowler has been left out of England's opening two Tests in the Caribbean - but says that hasn't made the side's losses easier to bear.
"I've found I have been down after the defeats, even though I'm not playing and that's a real positive," said the 27-year-old, who will be hoping for an opportunity in the third Test in St Lucia from Saturday.
"With my role I have to be patient and know when I am going to be involved or not.
"In these two games I wouldn't have expected to play. But I don't feel I have wasted time, I feel like I have made improvements.
"I'm ready to go but I was so impressed with Mo [Moeen Ali] in Antigua. For me he's doing a great job and I'm learning a lot from him."
Leach also says he may seek a loan move away from Somerset during the 2019 Royal London One-Day Cup.
The Taunton-born bowler is a first-choice pick in red-ball cricket but has played only 16 List A games and has yet to feature in a T20 game.
"That's a potential option but at the moment I'll focus on trying to get into Somerset's white-ball team," added the left-armer.
"I've had discussions with the coaches and the door is open. I have to work hard at my game to get myself in their best XI. If I feel I won't play, I might ask the question to see if there is an option. Let's see."
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