May 24, 2024

The defeat of England by Afghanistan on Sunday in Delhi will go down as one of the greatest World Cup surprises.

It ranks right up there with Kenya’s victory over the West Indies in 1996 and Ireland’s victory over England in Bangalore in 2011.

It is unprecedented for Afghanistan, the tournament’s second-lowest-ranked team, to defeat the reigning champions.

I must start by praising them greatly.

They appeared to be the better team with the bat, the ball, and on the field.

Afghanistan defeats England in shocking fashion.
However, despite the ‘huge blow’ of the loss, Buttler ‘definitely’ believes: England is in despair, while Afghanistan is happy
How to follow the BBC’s coverage of the Cricket World Cup
Afghanistan is always a fierce rival.

Because of their fiery nature, they may become untamed or lack discipline.

Their volatile personalities make them capable of crazy cricket, as we witnessed in Delhi when Rahmanullah Gurbaz was run out by his skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi.

But they only ever show concern for others.

Hashmatullah led the team admirably, holding the field for the spinners against the lower order of England. I was deeply moved.

England, in contrast, simply appears to be lagging. The same can be said about Australia throughout this World Cup.

With their win over Bangladesh on Tuesday in Dharamsala, we had hoped that Buttler’s team had turned a corner. Unfortunately, they are not gelling as a team.

Despite the fact that spin claimed eight of England’s wickets, this pitch was not subpar.

It was a little slow and held down, but that is how things are in India.

By no means did England complete its turner batting second.

Instead, their innings were just a mess of soft outs.

Jos Buttler wafted idly in preparation for being bowled through the gate after Dawid Malan pushed the ball to extra cover. With his lbw choice, Jonny Bairstow was the lone unfortunate party because his leg was barely clipped. That decision was not good.

However, England’s bowling is more concerning.

I’ve already seen South Africa play twice in this tournament, and if England keeps bowling the way they have, things may get ugly when they face off on Saturday in Mumbai.

Chris Woakes must accept some responsibility for his starting spells in all three games, even though I hate to say it.

During the powerplay, he has bowled 11 over and claimed one wicket for 95 runs.

It has let the opponent to take the lead right away in each game by allowing fast beginnings for them.

Simply put, Woakes lacks rhythm. It is difficult to determine if he is bowling slower balls or effort balls because the ball isn’t coming out at all correctly.

That might occur.

I would simply go bowl 20 minutes of bouncers in the nets whenever it occurred to me.

That gave me the energy I needed to finish my motion, move my wrist, and start my delivery stride.

Because I don’t see how England can employ Woakes again in this tournament with his current kind of bowling, I worry that it will be too late for Woakes.

That is unfortunate because he has been a crucial player for England, but he is far behind the competition.

The expectations of England are now dangling by a thread, so they must ascertain the source of this slow start as soon as possible.

Australia at least has the advantage of having lost to South Africa and India, the two teams with the best record thus far.

Afghanistan and Bangladesh were expected to be England’s bankers, but they only managed one victory between them.

The remainder of their upcoming games are all difficult, with the exception of the matchup with the Netherlands in Pune, which England absolutely ought to win.

After one more defeat, the game is over.

The issue, in my opinion, is that England, the reigning champions, have not displayed the sort of mindset that is expected of them.

The previous Australia teams would puff out their chests and declare, “We’re here to win again.” You will need to defeat us.

I recall talking to Buttler about his expectations for the competition before England lost to New Zealand by a boundary edge.

He mentioned not wanting the team to view themselves as the reigning champions, but I wonder if that is exactly what England need right now.

Their crown is gradually falling off of their head. The best course of action might be to dig deep and locate that fight inside.

How badly do they want to retain their title as 50-plus world champions? I might be searching for that as motivation.

It appears that Ben Stokes will likely be available for next week, which will unquestionably be of great assistance.

I believe England has been holding onto him for this upcoming game. Just when Stokes is about to begin, their tournament may be over.

Even Ben Stokes will find it impossible to turn things around alone, therefore it is ironic that Harry Brook, the replacement player, was the one to bat well today with 66 in a testy environment.

That merely makes things more difficult.

Regarding the rest, I predict Woakes will be replaced by David Willey.

Someone who can handle the new ball must be chosen. Gus Atkinson is not good at that, and Mark Wood dislikes doing it in one-day cricket.

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