Moin Ali was keen to play down England’s chances at the 20th World Cup ahead of the Pakistan tour

England captain Moeen Ali is keen to play down England’s chances at the 20th World Cup, as preparations begin with the tour of Pakistan after three consecutive defeats.

  • Moin Ali played down England’s chances at the 20th World Cup this winter
  • England is preparing for a long series with Pakistan that begins tomorrow
  • The team has lost all three T20 series since the retirement of former captain Eoin Morgan
  • Several players were injured or rested before the tournament kicks off in Australia

Preparations for England’s latest bid to unite the world’s white ball titles began in the spirited atmosphere in Karachi this evening – with captain-designate Moeen Ali keen to play down their chances.

Ali, who wore the armband until Joss Butler’s return from a calf injury, believes a team that holds in essence some of the best limited players this country has ever produced needn’t have the burden of carrying a favorite with him to the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia next month. Despite reaching the semi-finals of each of the last four world events.

“It is important not to pressure ourselves and say we will win the World Cup. We have been a good team for the past two or three years, but we also lost sometimes which is about the weight of expectations.”

England captain Moeen Ali has played down England's chances at World Twenty20

England captain Moeen Ali has played down England’s chances at World Twenty20

They have lost three consecutive series since Joss Butler (left) and Matthew Mott (right) took charge

They have lost three consecutive series since Joss Butler (left) and Matthew Mott (right) took charge

“We need to focus on one match. In the World Cup, we win one match at a time, by playing our best cricket and not worrying about the end result. This will take care of itself.

‘It suits our style not to be desperate for something. Of course, everyone wants to win it, but let’s see how it goes and do our best.”

There have been big changes since the 2021 T20 Championship that ended with her quarter-final exit for New Zealand last November: Eoin Morgan’s mid-summer retirement was followed by the omission of Jason Roy and an injury to Jonny Birstow at the end of the year.

It will be difficult to say how far the team will progress on this journey, particularly in the short term, given the massive turnover of personnel from the team that will start the seven-game series here and are expected to take to the field in Perth against Afghanistan on October 22.

Ali said England's poor performance was partly due to the departure of former captain Owen Morgan

Ali said England’s poor performance was partly due to the departure of former captain Owen Morgan

In addition to Butler, bowlers Mark Wood, Chris Woks and Reese Tubley will return after an injury absence, while Ben Stokes, Liam Livingston and Chris Jordan will strengthen the squad under command.

England have already used 23 players in Twenty20 this calendar year and nine more can predict when the match will be against Asia Cup runners-up Pakistan.

These drastic changes in individuals undoubtedly affected the results, as the three binary series in 2022 ended in defeat.

Ali points out that the poor performance earlier this summer was partly the effects of Morgan’s departure and loss of tactical identity.

Ali said, who added: “This is not a reset, the testing side has been reset, and when Morgs took over, it was reset, but it is more about how we will develop and move forward.

Ewen Morgan (R) resigned as England's white football captain early this year after seven years.

Ewen Morgan (R) resigned as England’s white football captain early this year after seven years.

Pakistan will provide a stern test for England as World Cup preparations begin

Pakistan will provide a stern test for England as World Cup preparations begin

Yes, we want to be brave and aggressive, as we have always been, but there is also a way to do that. Maybe this summer, we’d go out and try to be really aggressive, and we were fired. The basics of multiplication are still there, we just need to get that balance right.

Things won’t get any easier over the next two weeks. Pakistan has a phenomenal record in the National Stadium – which will host four million sales in six nights before the series move to Lahore – winning all nine whiteball matches on the field since international cricket returned to the country three years ago.

The opening match holds significance on multiple levels: for Birmingham-born Ali the honor to lead against the country of his heritage, for Pakistan its first home game against England in 17 years, and for the country itself it is a fundraising vehicle, with everything going on. It will be used to provide relief to the millions affected by the recent devastating floods.

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