Swann slams old-fashioned England

Graeme Swann believes England are living in the past when it comes to ODI cricket

Graeme Swann believes England are living in the past when it comes to ODI cricket

First published in National Sport News © by

England do not have a "cat in hell's chance" of winning next year's World Cup under Alastair Cook, according to Graeme Swann.

Swann and former England captain Michael Vaughan were both outspoken on the BBC's Test Match Special coverage of the washed-out first Royal London Series fixture against India in Bristol.

They voiced astonishment that England have left all-rounder Ravi Bopara out of their squad over the next two weeks, and are mystified by a collective lack of power in the batting order.

Swann welcomed the introduction of his former Nottinghamshire team-mate Alex Hales as Cook's new opening partner, but believes it is a move that should have been made long ago.

He insists others, such as uncapped James Vince and Jason Roy, should also be fast-tracked into the team before it is too late.

England have yet to win a World Cup in 10 attempts dating back almost 40 years. Swann gives them no chance - with tactics he thinks are a decade out of date - of breaking their duck in Australia and New Zealand.

He said of his former team-mate and captain: "I love Alastair Cook dearly, but I don't think he should be bothering playing ODI cricket any more. He doesn't need to.

"He has proved a very good point in Tests - enjoy being England Test captain, let young people [play] who want to smash it everywhere and win you the World Cup.

"We won't win this one - there's no chance. But in four years' time, we might have a chance of winning a World Cup if we get all these young, exciting players - people who have been brought up on one-day cricket and have none of the baggage of this old-fashioned style of cricket we play.

"We play a 10-year-old game.

"I've just seen the sponsors here are Royal London and the tagline on their adverts is 'we're so yesterday' - they couldn't sum up the England one-day team any more in my view."

Cook has won many new admirers by turning England's Test fortunes around this summer to beat India 3-1 - after Vaughan and others had called for him to be relieved of the captaincy.

Swann added: "Alastair Cook is the most stubborn man in the world.

"He has almost backed himself into a corner where he's got to carry on.

"I don't think we've got a cat in hell's chance of winning the World Cup."

Hales' much-anticipated ODI debut is on hold until Wednesday in Cardiff, after the Bristol washout - and Swann can hardly wait.

"Hales should have been in this side for three years ... how the powers-that-be didn't see him as the future in ODI cricket ...!" he said, before recalling methods he despaired of as a player and which could not get England beyond the quarter-finals of the last World Cup.

"I used to sit in the changing room and I always felt we were so far behind other teams, because we play such an old-fashioned brand.

"Some of my best mates - Cook, (Ian) Bell, (Gary) Ballance - are not one-day players who are going to win you a World Cup.

"Hales is going to win you a World Cup - Vince, Roy, (Jos) Buttler, (Eoin) Morgan.

"They're players I wouldn't want to bowl at, who can build a total of 360-370."

Vaughan and Swann are at a loss to come to terms with Bopara's omission.

"It's absolutely crazy not to have Ravi in the team," said the former off-spinner.

Vaughan added: "I'm amazed and staggered Ravi Bopara is not here.

"He could be considered England's best one-day cricketer in the last one-and-a-half years.

"To throw away all that experience, know-how, bowling ability ... I'd be amazed if he's not back in by the World Cup."

Vaughan led England on a failed World Cup campaign in the West Indies seven years ago, and in hindsight does not think he should have been there.

"In 2006-07, my knee was dodgy.

"They should have knocked on my door to say 'your one-day form's not good, your knee's a bit dodgy - we could do with a bit of your captaincy, but we're going to go without you for that World Cup'.

"They'd have been better suited in 2007 without me."

Little, he believes, has changed - England still keeping faith with the wrong players in 50-over cricket.

"You look at England's strike rates - Bell 76, Cook 78 - with India, (Virat) Kohli 89, (Mahendra Singh) Dhoni 88, (Suresh) Raina 91, (Shikhar) Dhawan 89. We're 10 behind.

"We've made the same mistake now as we did in my time, five to six years ago and in the 1990s.

"We're picking one-day squads on Test form.

"The other teams have gone power at the top and all the way through. India have got power strikers all the way down - South Africa, Australia exactly the same.

"You need power at the top, in the middle and at the end."

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree