Following the defeat against India in the first ODI, things now look difficult for England. The visitors have lost Test series, T20 series, and are on the verge of losing the ODI series too. So, what has caused the fall of the World Cup winning team? Former English spinner Monty Panesar shared his views on the same after the match on Tuesday. The veteran made several noteworthy points that have caused problems for England, and here are the key takeaways –
England batting upROOTed
The first player every English enthusiast may have missed from the game would have been Joe Root. Often considered among the world’s best, Root is not in England’s current ODI squad. The veteran’s absence has resulted in an unsteady batting line-up with huge pressure on skipper Eoin Morgan’s shoulders. As the captain has to now hold the innings, it has resulted in him sacrificing his natural playing style. The issue was witnessed clearly today after England came out all guns blazing and started with a quickfire 135-run opening partnership, but stumbled wickedly in the middle-overs. The departure of both the openers saw Ben Stokes and skipper Eoin Morgan come to the middle, but both the experienced batsmen failed to continue the momentum. This brings us to the second issue pointed by Monty Panesar –
The unsolved Stokes equation
Following a successful World Cup 2019 campaign, the rise of Ben Stokes was feared by other cricketing powerhouses, but lately things have not been the same. The English all-rounder played his first ODI on Tuesday after 2019 and failed to make the impact in the batting-order that was required of him. This has now raised questions on the team management, who have not been able to find a settled position for Stokes. The hard-hitter is usually seen lower down the order, or prefers to open the innings to give the team a quick start. However, the first ODI saw Stokes come in at No.3 spot, which left everyone puzzled. It could have been Sam Billings or Eoin Morgan himself, who could have continued the chase, but England took a risk, which didn’t pay dividends for the team.
This may have been an unwanted start, but the series is not over yet. With two more matches remaining, England can still make a comeback and board the flight to home with a series victory to show. Watch full video of Monty Panesar’s analysis of today’s game here-