Nasser Hussain has said that England “struck it lucky” with Mark Wood’s fitness at the ICC Champions Trophy.
The team confirmed their place in the semi-finals and knocked Australia out of the tournament over the weekend with their third win in three at Edgbaston.
During the match Wood took career-best ODI figures of 4-33 to help and hold Australia to 277-9 before Ben Stokes produces a stunning century to see England claim victory.
Speaking after the match Hussain said, “It only seems like a few months ago we were questioning the England bowling attack. It all seems to have come together in the last six months. England have struck it lucky with Wood. If this tournament a few months ago, he’d have been injured. As it is, he’s well rested because of his injuries. The fitness staff have got him up and ready for this competition. And he gets good players out – Hashim Amla, Kane Williamson, David Warner, Steve Smith already in this tournament. He is gold dust for England.”
However, while England’s bowling was impressive, there are concerns surrounding the batting and in particular the form of Jason Roy.
Roy was dismissed second ball for four, his fifth single-figure score in his last six innings’ for England. It saw the team slip to 35-3 before Stokes’ unbeaten 102 and a solid 87 from skipper Eoin Morgan saved them.
There are now calls for Johnny Bairstow to replace Roy at the top of the order. While Morgan has given Roy his backing, many are arguing that he is technically and mentally unprepared for the tournament.
Hussain pointed out that, “His bat angle came right across the ball and then he fell over completely. He also didn’t ask Alex Hales if he should review the lbw decision or not.”