Time to blood fresh faces in England team, says Essex coach Paul Grayson

Paul Grayson

Paul Grayson

Essex head coach Paul Grayson believes the time has come to replace the old guard in the England team, following Eoin Morgan’s side’s failure to reach the knockout stages of the World Cup.

England lost to minnows Bangladesh by 15 runs in Adelaide yesterday, having already been defeated by Australia (111 runs), New Zealand (eight wickets) and Sri Lanka (nine wickets).

Grayson, whose side began their pre-season schedule yesterday, said: “I don’t think the senior players performed like they were expected to, while the captain (Morgan) has been out of form for quite a while.

“It looks like there may be an opportunity now to rebuild the side and I would not be surprised if a few of the senior players announced their retirement.

“I think the message from the England management should be, ‘we are looking at Twenty-20 and 50-over players.

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“I think we have been a bit guilty of choosing Test players for the one-day team. Gary Ballance is a fabulous Test player but has come in at number three at the World Cup and it has not quite worked out for him.

“We lack a left-arm seamer and a left-arm spinner, that type of character and there is some good talent out there in the county game.”

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The likes of Joe Root, James Taylor, Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali have showed some potential during the tournament, but experienced professionals such as Morgan, James Anderson and Stuart Broad disappointed.

Essex’s own Alastair Cook, meanwhile, was ousted from the captaincy role in favour of Morgan, and Grayson believes the country’s hierarchy may have to go back to the drawing board, even if success takes time to come to fruition.

“It could be a case of taking a couple of steps back to go again,” explained Grayson, who played two one-day games for England.

“But it’s a results business, like it is in any sport, and people are a bit impatient.

“If they want something these days they press a button, but it is possible to rebuild teams as Sir Alex Ferguson showed for a time at Manchester United.”

He added: “Right now, it is hugely disappointing. We went out there with high hopes of getting through the group stages and even yesterday, we were saying, if we could just beat Bangladesh and Afghanistan, we could maybe peak at the right time.

“We all thought it was a good batting wicket and the players will be hurting, as will the coaching staff.

“I know (England coach) Peter Moores and he will take it personally.”

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