Knight says her squad has overcome the Ashes disappointment, ready to defend WC

Knight says her squad has overcome the Ashes disappointment, ready to defend WC

Heather Knight, England’s captain, has stated that her squad has successfully overcome the disappointment of the recent Ashes debacle, and are ready for the ebbs and flows of the upcoming World Cup in New Zealand, where they will defend the prestigious title they won in their home soil five years ago.

The England players have completed their compulsory quarantine period three days ahead of the fixed date, and are scheduled to clash against Bangladesh and South Africa in a pair of warm-up matches in Lincoln next week,  just before their rematch with Australia in their tournament opener in Hamilton on Saturday.

It is a fact that England’s recent ODIs with Australia did not go as they would have wished, as they were routed 3-0 in the decisive leg of the multi-format Ashes series, Knight says that a few days of golf and mountain-climbing in their scenic base of Queenstown has helped to reenergize the players and set them up for a very different sort of challenge in the coming days.

England might be entering the tournament as defending champions, but it is Australia who are the favorites to grab the trophy this time, following their dominant performances in recent years. They have lost just twice in 33 completed ODIs since that last event, including a world-record run of 26 consecutive wins, from the start of 2018 through to India’s two-wicket win in Mackay last September.

Knight admits Australia are favorites to win the World Cup

“When you have to do most things outdoors, the place you want to be is one of the most stunning, beautiful places in Queenstown,” Knight said. “A few of us managed to take on Ben Lomond, which was a lot of fun, climbing for the views of Queenstown.

“There’s been a lot of golf, a lot of just going to cafes, and just enjoying what Queenstown has to offer. It’s been a chance to just switch off, do a few outdoorsy things away from cricket, gather our headspace, and try and refocus following the Ashes.”

“Australia are going to go in as favourites, but [2017] should give us a lot of experience of what it takes to be successful in these events,” Knight said. “Sometimes it’s just about getting over the line, and I think that’s what we did so well in 2017. We just were able to win those games that were really tight. We were able to keep our composure in the big moments, and deal with all the off-field stuff that comes with the World Cup.

“It was one of the best five-six weeks of my life, for sure,” she added. “It was an amazing competition and we remember how imperfect it was as well. Because we won the competition, you look back and think it was all plain sailing, and it completely wasn’t.”

Avishkar Govardhane is a Sports Editor and enthusiast, working here at Clout News covering the latest Cricket News.

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