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Quentin Batalillon

General News 2024

T20 World Cup: ‘Our best cricket is ahead of us…’: England coach Mott ahead of semi-final against India

Providence (Guyana), June 27: Ahead of his side’s two semi-finals in the ICC T20 World Cup against India, England head coach Matthew Mott said the team will not treat the match as just another match as they face a very different Indian cricket team under the great leadership of Rohit Sharma and was optimistic that the best cricket in the side is “in front of them”.

It will be a rematch of the semi-final of the 2022 edition of the tournament as a red-hot Team India will take on England on Thursday in the second semi-final of the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup in Guyana. The last time these two nations faced off in a semi-final of the Men’s T20 World Cup was just 19 months ago in Adelaide, when a remarkable opening partnership between Jos Buttler and Alex Hales saw England cruise to 10-wicket wins, forcing a complete rethink in India’s T20 strategy and a move away from more established superstars to younger blood, from conservatism to aggression.

This time, however, India have more batting power, led by experienced captains Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, more attacking options in the middle overs and more variety in their attack. However, the reigning champions will face a tough challenge, especially as captain Jos Buttler and his new opening partner Phil Salt are both in great form.

Speaking on whether the team is treating the semi-final as just another game, Mott said: “Exactly, that’s exactly what his message was at our meeting this morning (skipper Buttler on treating the game as different and big). I think that when we got through the Super Eight I think it was a mixture of relief. I think we’ve been under the pump a bit in recent weeks, probably from the breakout against Scotland I think we’ve probably gotten into that mentality ;we felt we had to play every game and there is a general feeling that our best cricket is ahead of us.”

“I think we’ve been pretty good in the periods, we’ve done some really good things here, but we haven’t put together that perfect game. So with a bit of luck that will happen against India. It’ll be a contest for sure.” They are a very strong unit and present a huge challenge for us, but one that we are very happy to take on,” he added.

During the previous semi-final in 2022, when England defeated India by 10 wickets in Adelaide, Mott said the Indian team is now a completely different team compared to the class of 2022.

“I think the way they have approached it over the last few years is making the game extremely tough on the power play. I think Rohit (Sharma) has led the way extremely well with the bat and shown leadership in that area. , just like Jos before us. But I think it’s a very unique challenge for us. It’s a location that we don’t know well. We’re obviously armed with a lot of information and we think we have a team on it, but There’s a little unknown about what we’re going to get.”

“And I think they certainly played some really good cricket. However, as we know with tournaments, it’s not about no one remembering how the round matches went or the Super Eight. It’s about how you go in the semi-finals and the final. finals And we are excited about this unique challenge ahead,” he added.

Praising skipper Buttler, Mott said his leadership continues to evolve every day and looks to the top of his game.

“I think we have some great players around him who love the way he plays. But probably the most important thing is how much of our bowling groups have developed under his captaincy. I think about the game against Australia where we had a few had done things wrong. I think from that point on they really showed the way and adapted the circumstances extremely well,” he added.

Mott said the match is going to be great and both teams will be “butting” each other for about 40 overs.

Speaking about India’s disappointing performances in knockout matches in recent years, Mott said the consistency with which India have reached the semi-finals and finals over the years shows how great they are as a team.

“And just like everyone else, when you get to the semi-finals, every team, and the four teams here, they all think they have a chance to win it. And there are small margins. So when you look at those key moments At the right time you cross the line, if you don’t, you go home. Everyone knows the consequences of missing, but also the potential to continue, play two very good games and you walk away with the title.”

“So, our tournament really starts tomorrow, we’re excited about – we know their players well, they know us well. It literally comes down to a few bounces of the ball, luck and timing at the right moments,” he concluded.

Mott said the fact that every match since the group stage loss to Australia has been a must-win has given them confidence ahead of the semi-final.

“It’s only when you get to the semi-finals and the finals that sometimes you open your eyes to broaden your horizons and play that cricket that we want to be known for. I think both teams, when you get to the semi-finals, -last stage , the first part is relief, I think. You got through the really rough, determined, difficult part. Even in T20s the game sometimes demands. And when you get to the semi-finals, we feel like we’ve been strengthened by that the situation we were in. We sweated on the weather; we sweated on other results. So it feels like we can play with a lot more freedom in this semi-final and really show what we can do now and what we can do. have,” he concluded.

Selections:

Indian Team: Rohit Sharma(c), Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant(w), Suryakumar Yadav, Shivam Dube, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Jasprit Bumrah, Yuzvendra Chahal, Sanju Samson, Mohammed Siraj , Yashasvi Jaiswal

England squad: Philip Salt, Jos Buttler (w/c), Jonny Bairstow, Harry Brook, Moeen Ali, Liam Livingstone, Sam Curran, Chris Jordan, Jofra Archer, Adil Rashid, Reece Topley, Mark Wood, Ben Duckett, Will Jacks, Tom Hartley.

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