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Bayliss still eager for England to play attacking cricket

Head coach Trevor Bayliss during nets
Head coach Trevor Bayliss during nets

England have been urged not to veer towards a safety-first approach in the wake of their surprise 20-run defeat to Sri Lanka.

  • England suffered a surprise loss to Sri Lanka at Headingley
  • But head coach Trevor Bayliss doesn’t believe a huge change in approach is required

 While head coach Trevor Bayliss wants to ensure batsmen are in control of any risks, he is equally keen to avoid an over-reaction when they face Australia at Lord’s on Tuesday.

And despite the loss he said that any temptation to recall Jason Roy will be resisted unless the medical team are sure the opener has recovered from the hamstring tear that has forced him out of the past two matches.

Roy has resumed practice and will aim to step that up over the next couple of days.

“When someone of Jason’s ilk isn’t playing then of course you’re going to miss him,” Bayliss admitted.

“We are not going to risk him, that’s for sure. We’ll look at each game in turn and look for the medical people to see if they think he’s alright. If not, we will do the same the next time.”

Of Roy’s replacement, James Vince, Bayliss said: “He looks a million dollars and finds a way to get out.

“Hopefully he is one of those guys who puts an innings together which tips him over the edge, and he gets a big score.”

Both captain Eoin Morgan and his deputy Jos Buttler were critical of England’s flawed chase of a 233-run target at Headingley on a pitch exploited superbly by the variety and control of the Sri Lanka attack.

The senior duo thought the innings lacked intensity, while some criticism from outside the squad was directed at Moeen Ali, who followed a six against the spin of Dhananjaya de Silva by immediately holing out to long off. 

“Moeen is obviously disappointed, but other times he hits it over the fence and we’d be yelling ‘great shot’,” Bayliss countered.

“Players have to try things and you’re always going to make a mistake if you are trying things. That was not a great time to play the shot having hit the six the ball before.

“They make a joke sometimes in the changing rooms about hitting a six and a single next ball, and that’s good cricket. Some of the guys have hit six, six, six and that’s real good cricket.”

Ben Stokes almost turned the game England’s way with late hitting but the task was too much by that stage and when Mark Wood became the last wicket, his Durham team-mate was left frustratingly unbeaten on 82.

“If we had shown the urgency at the start of the innings that we had at the end we would have been in a better place,” Bayliss said.

“Although the pitch wasn’t the easiest to bat on, normally we are still knocking the ball around and finding gaps. I don’t think we did that well enough.

“There has been a lot of noise around the England team playing well over the last little while and I think we just took it a little bit easy with the bat.

 “We seemed to think that if we batted for a bit of time and put together a partnership we would be alright, but we forgot about the process we go through to make those partnerships happen.”