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T20 World Cup: Whatever preparation we get, have to go with it, says Mark Wood on England’s build-up

IANS | May 30, 2024 05:21 PM

NEW DELHI: Tearaway pacer Mark Wood believes England have to make do with whatever games they have in hand in their preparation period for their Men’s T20 World Cup title defence, especially with them not playing any official warm-up games organised by the ICC. England’s two games against Pakistan at Headingley and Cardiff have been abandoned without a ball being bowled, while the other game saw them emerge victorious by 23 runs. They have the last game of their series against Pakistan at The Oval on Thursday, which has a rain threat.

"Obviously, it's not ideal when you schedule four games and we might only get one or two. A few of the lads are keen to get a run out at the Oval, so that will help. It will give confidence to everyone in the group.”

"It was a good game the other day against Pakistan. They looked like they were pushing us really close and might have got there in the end if it wasn't for such good bowling and shutting the game out from (Reece) Topley, (Chris) Jordan and (Jofra) Archer, ” Wood was quoted as saying by Sky Sports Cricket.

Post the end of the series, England will fly to Barbados for their T20 World Cup campaign opener against Group B opponents Scotland on June 4.

"Yes, we have got experience, but warm-up games always give you a sense of different things you can tinker with. Who is in good form? Who needs to work on other things? Some lads have been playing at the IPL and they are match ready.”

“Other lads haven't, and the lads that haven't, is there a freshness? You want the games to practise stuff, but it is a fine balance. One or two of us might feel like we need a game or two to get going, but there will be no excuses. It is coming around thick and fast. Whatever preparation we get, that is what we are going to have to go with, " added Wood.

Returning fast-bowler Jofra Archer claimed two wickets at Edgbaston on his first international return for 14 months. "The mark of Jofra is that he is always in the game, always at people. There is always a chance of wickets and him changing the game.”

"He bowled that difficult over -- that sixth over is a tough one, it is the last over of the Powerplay where the batters are looking to score heavy, and I am sure he would have been nervous.”

"He is a pretty cool guy, and as soon as he got that over out of the way he would have settled into the game. To bowl those next three overs for next to nothing shows a great deal of resilience, which is something he has had to show over the past few years, " elaborated Wood.

He signed off by saying he was unaware about the idea of him partnering with Archer for the new-ball duties at the T20 World Cup. "I honestly have no idea. That's a question for the management. But I have played with Jofra before, and I don't see it's like me or him. I don't see why we can't play together.”

"We played together at the 2019 World Cup and things went pretty well. I don't see why we can't play in the same team, but maybe it is up to the management to manage our bodies and see how we get through the tournament."

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