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Thursday, December 8, 2022

Mark Wood admits England bowlers ‘tried too hard’ to make up for absent ‘legends’

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The match is fairly evenly-poised at the close on day two, with West Indies 109 behind with six wickets in hand, and Nkrumah Bonner and Jason Holder’s fifth-wicket stand unbroken on 75.

After making 311, England made a poor start with the ball. Kraigg Brathwaite and John Campbell raced to 44 without loss in 10 overs before lunch, and their opening stand was worth 83.

England fought back well with four wickets – some of them gifts – before Bonner an Holder got in the way. Anderson and Broad, dropped for this tour, cast a long shadow.

Wood stated that England’s attack cannot compare to those “legends”, and felt a subpar performance was perhaps down to “trying too hard”.

“We were all a bit inconsistent, didn’t get our length quite right and we were a little bit too full or too short,” he said. “We didn’t bowl well to start with but actually I thought we came back really well. We had clear plans, me and [Ben] Stokes bowling together felt threatening.

“It’s obviously going to be talked about, Anderson and Broad, because they are legends but we just have to admit we didn’t get it right to start with and we’ll be out to get it right next time.

“We maybe tried a little bit too hard, with the void of Anderson and Broad we wanted to try hard and prove we could do it, maybe that was it. The way we came back showed good character as a group.”

Wood admitted it was “weird” without Anderson and Broad.

“Yeah, of course it’s weird,” he said. “They have been there every time. We set out as a group, we knew they were high quality players, but we had to step up. We can’t compare ourselves to them, because we are not them. We have to try bring what we can do.”

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