Flower warns England players not to lose focus

August 3rd, 2011 - 2:54 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Aug 3 (IANS) England team director Andy Flower has asked his players not to lose their focus in the euphoria of a possible coronation as the World’s best Test team since the series against India is only half-way through.

He stressed that the series against India is not yet won and the players should focus on the third Test against India at Edgbaston.

England, who are third in the ICC Test rankings, are 2-0 up in the series. A series victory by two-Test margin will give England the No.1 ranking, bringing India down from the top.

“I would like to emphasise right now that we’re ahead in the series but we’re only half-way through the series,” said the former Zimbabwe captain.

“So, there is no point in triumphalism, we don’t even know if we’re going to win the series yet. At the forefront of our minds right now should be resting and recuperating after the back-to-back Tests and then getting our minds and bodies ready for the next challenge at Edgbaston. It’s actually not only pointless looking further ahead than that, it’s dangerous,” Flower was quoted as saying in The Guardian.

He said that England would make a decision Friday over whether to call in cover for batsman Jonathan Trott, who is doubtful for the third Test starting at Edgbaston next Wednesday after damaging his shoulder in the field at Trent Bridge.

Flower said that scans had shown “no structural damage” but that Trott “is still in a bit of discomfort and nowhere near 100 per cent yet”. Chris Tremlett and Graeme Swann are also being monitored but are expected to be named in the squad Saturday.

James Taylor, the tiny Leicestershire batsman, may have overtaken Ravi Bopara as the next man in line after scoring 76 for the England Lions against Sri Lanka A in Scarborough Tuesday while Bopara only managed 19 runs.

“If we keep with three seamers and a spinner, it will be a difficult call to make. We need to see conditions first but our four seamers are all performing exceptionally well. Bresnan, Tremlett, (Jimmy) Anderson and (Stuart) Broad are battling for the top spots in a very healthy way. That sort of competition is a great thing for English cricket.”

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