England top six batsmen have underperformed: Flower

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

LONDON - Coach Andy Flower has put pressure on England batsmen by saying that they have under-performed for two years, and asked the top six to score in a big way in the Ashes series.

Skipper Andrew Strauss, Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Paul Collingwood and Ian Bell will be under pressure to deliver match-winning totals as demanded by the coach.

“First innings totals will be very important here. I don’t think our batsmen have performed as well as they would like over the last couple of years. Yes, that is an area we can improve,” FLower said.

England top six batsmen are likely to face South Australia tomorrow as Flower tries to get the team for the First Test on November 25 into top form, The Sun reports.

“These batsmen are still better than anybody else. They are quality international players. But we are always looking to improve and set high expectations for them,” he said.

Strauss has not made a Test century since his 161 against Australia at Lord’s in July 2009.

Cook only guaranteed his selection for The Ashes with a century against Pakistan at the Brit Oval in August.

Trott was England’s most consistent batsman last summer, while Pietersen is still striving to recapture his best form after an Achilles operation.

Collingwood finished the summer with a dismal 37 runs in five Test innings and Bell missed most of the second half of the season with a broken bone in his foot. (ANI)

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