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Ian Bell eager to work with Mahela Jayawardene

Ian Bell eager to work with Mahela Jayawardene
Ian Bell is eager to work with Mahela Jayawardene who has been appointed as a batting consultant for England's tour of UAE.
©REUTERS / Action Images

England batsman, Ian Bell, is eager to work with Mahela Jayawardene, who was appointed as the team's batting consultant for the three-match Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.

England have also summoned the services of their former captain, Paul Collingwood, for the limited overs fixtures of the UAE tour as well as the 2016 World Twenty20.

The last time England toured the UAE to face Pakistan, they were handed a 0-3 defeat by the 1992 World Cup winners.

Stressing on the need for England to do well in the subcontinent conditions, Bell iterated that Jayawardene’s inputs will have a huge importance.

“The one thing we need to do is get better on the subcontinent, and he’s (Jayawardene) one of the best ever.

“To have his input leading into the series, and all the preparation, is going to be huge for us.

“I’m really looking forward to that.”

Jayawardene was an excellent batsman in the Asian conditions, having amassed 9399 runs at an average of 56.28 with 28 hundreds and 42 fifties to his name.

Bell is determined to make the most out of Jayawardene’s appointment by learning all he can from the Sri Lankan great.

“He was certainly hard to get out in those conditions, so I’ll be picking his brain all the way through if I can, probably badgering him a bit too much, but trying to get everything I can out of him to make my game better.”

Bell also feels that England will have to make adjustments to their playing eleven in order to suit the conditions in the UAE.

“Experience tells me in the UAE you have to be flexible, you have to go for a different style of cricket.

“We have to look for another alternative when we go to the subcontinent.

“We potentially might be opening with a spinner, so to have the option of having two or even three spinners is nice.”

Bell suggested that by giving Moeen Ali a chance to open the batting, England can afford the luxury of an extra bowler.

“If Mo (Moeen Ali) does get an opportunity to open the batting then it gives us another slot for us to get another bowler in, which is interesting.

“It’s a squad with a lot of possibilities.” 

Apart from the three Test matches, England also play four One-Day Internationals and three T20 Internationals against Pakistan in the UAE, between 13th October and 30th November.

© Cricket World 2015