Thursday, 18 October, 2018

England, New Zealand Seek Tightened Security Ahead Of Match

Vera Richards | 06 June, 2017, 05:36

England were dismissed for 123, with Tim Southee taking seven wickets for 33 runs.

"It was sort of men against boys", Morgan said of England's crushing loss.

It was perhaps not top of Morgan's wish-list to revisit uncomfortable memories. They were one of the favourites going into that World Cup and proved it against us that day'.

Captain Morgan yesterday admitted their catastrophic defeat by New Zealand at the 2015 World Cup was "men against boys".

"It's completely different now, two years down the line", said Morgan.

"We've got a completely new team, pretty much and I think a lot of it is to do with confidence".

However, England's XI in Cardiff could feature five survivors from that World Cup clash, including fast bowler Steven Finn, hammered for 49 runs in two overs, mainly as a result of McCullum's blazing hitting.

But Morgan is talking about a new collective belief, rather than mere personnel. "Two years ago, New Zealand had a lot of confidence and we didn't".

SPORT360 MATCH PREDICTION: England go into the match as favourites, but you can not rule out New Zealand from any contest.

Some of England's squad were in London during the attack - their hotel was half a mile away from where the incident took place - and all-rounder Ben Stokes, who was having dinner in Leicester Square, struggled to get back to the hotel because of the police cordon around the area.

Morgan is satisfied, though, that his team is at ease with the increased security measures prescribed by the International Cricket Council - and will take the field uncompromised by distractions.

This England team have grown up in the intervening months.

"So I think they've contributed to it as a whole".

He is encouraging discussion of the topic, however, from any players who feel the need after the latest incident at London Bridge.

"Visually it has", he said. 'He came through the other day against Bangladesh bowling more overs than we intended (seven) and I think we're almost there'.

Players have been given individual briefings by Reg Dickason, the England team's head of security, and Morgan said: "The guys are chatting about it constantly because it's not very far from where we stayed. But certainly within our team there's no concerns".

Finn, back in the reckoning after the injury which ruled Chris Woakes out of the tournament, may yet come straight back into the team. In many ways they were also the inspiration for a new, aggressive approach to one-day cricket that Morgan and his players have embraced over the past two years.

"Ben came through it again the other day, bowling more overs than we intended bowling him but I think we are almost there", Morgan said.

"He has the quality to come in and make a huge impact on the tournament but we have guys who can do that who are not playing at the moment". "I'd have no hesitation in playing him tomorrow if we felt it was the right thing to do".

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