Chris Silverwood believes England require only “fine tuning” to turn their T20 outfit into a side capable of adding the world title to their 50-over crown. England’s coach will send his strongest side into battle against South Africa in east London on Wednesday at the start of a pursuit he says can end in glory in Australia later this year.
And while there may be small tweaks, he believes they have the building blocks of a side that can land a second ICC-global trophy in October and November later this year.
“These will be very important games as we have two T20 World Cups coming up in a relatively short period of time,” he said. “So the fine tuning starts now.
“It is about getting our best players together, playing together and getting used to each other in certain positions and doing the fine tuning we need to do to make sure when we turn up at the T20 World Cup we are in a position to challenge.”
After the experimentation of the ODI series which Silverwood and captain Eoin Morgan admitted was used to find out about some fringe players, the big guns are back in town now.
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Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Mark Wood are back in after being rested and although Jofra Archer will miss out, Silverwood will field his strongest side throughout.
“I want to put the best XI out each time. ‘Morgs’ will have a massive say in that and if he wants to change a few things that is fine by me,” he said.
“But the two of us want to make sure we are bringing the team together that we feel can win that World Cup.”
Silverwood says he is not inclined to tinker too much with the line-up or the philosophy in white-ball cricket and will demand they continue with the same aggressive approach.
“My view of that is that nothing changes,” he said when asked about his strategy. “Obviously I spent two years working under Trev and working alongside Paul Farbrace, so I just don’t see why anything should change. They got it spot on.”
Silverwood also seems tempted to leave the 50-overs opening partnership between Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow intact this week despite admitting Jos Buttler is another option to open the batting.
England will announce a 16-man Test squad for the two match series against Sri Lanka next month and leg-spinner Matt Parkinson seems likely to get the nod as the third spinner ahead of Liam Dawson and behind Dom Bess and Jack Leach.
Adil Rashid has ruled himself out and Moeen Ali, though insisting that he was missing international cricket, is not thought to be ready to resume his Test career.
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“Moeen is still a very valuable asset to the Test side, always has been and always will be,” said Silverwood. “Equally we’ve got some good young spinners coming through so we’re in a really good position at the moment.
“We’ve got Bess, Leach, Parky that are all sort of there and Mo when he’s ready to come back will give us some really good headaches which I’m really pleased about.
“We’ll be listening to Moeen and supporting him and if long-term we do get him back for a series like India next winter then fantastic. But we’ll have to work very closely with him.”