Chester-le-Street - Former England off-spinner Graeme Swann has told Eoin
Morgan's men to maintain their 'courageous' approach to one-day cricket and rid
themselves of a fear of failure once and for all.
Swann was severely critical of England's build-up to this year's World Cup
and his fears were proved correct as the side suffered an embarrassing
first-round exit, having failed to beat a single rival Test nation.
But a revamped team, still captained by former Ireland batsman Morgan, have
changed tack in stunning fashion during their ongoing one-day series against
They head into Saturday's finale of a five-match series at Durham's
Chester-le-Street ground all square at 2-2 with the World Cup finalists.
More than the raw results, the way England have played has been the greatest
possible contrast to their World Cup debacle in Australia and New Zealand.
They have now scored in excess of 300 in four successive one-day
internationals, something no England side had previously managed, and have
played in a bold style that many observers thought was simply beyond them.
Swann, a member of the only England side to win a major global limited overs
trophy - the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 in the Caribbean - has been impressed.
"It's so refreshing because it is like they have held their hands up
and said 'you've all got a point'," explained Swann, speaking at an event
for charity Chance to Shine, which promotes cricket in British schools, in
"Everyone knew it was the most obvious thing in the world we were
playing an outmoded, outdated form of the game," said Swann.
"But (there was) the arrogance that saw us stick to our guns and say 'everyone
is wrong' - and in that World Cup I think England got justifiably vilified,
because they were so stuck in their ways."
England's World Cup exit played a key role in the sacking of former coach
Now, under caretaker coach Paul Farbrace, who is soon to cede control to
Australian Trevor Bayliss ahead of the Ashes, England appear to have thrown off
However, Swann warned England against reverting back to their old ways
should results go against them.
"It will take courage to stick to it," he said. "But they
should take what New Zealand have done as a blueprint.
"There is no way on God's green earth we have a worse talent pool than
any other country in the world - we've got these players who, if unleashed and
given free rein, can be incredible one-day players."
Swann added: "In Eoin Morgan, they have a good leader - because he
genuinely couldn't give two hoots what the public are saying.
"If he thinks something is right he will go all out for it."
Swann also urged that players be given a decent run in the team to prove
their worth ahead of the 2019 World Cup in England and not be discarded if
their attacking approach did not produce results within a matter of games.
He cited hard-hitting Surrey opener Jason Roy, brought into the one-day side
following the World Cup, as someone worthy of prolonged backing by the
"We're too afraid of failing in this country," said Swann.
"It won't happen overnight.
"Jason Roy will be brilliant opening the batting if given say, two years.
"He should be told 'it doesn't matter if you keep failing - just keep
going out there and whacking the ball'."