Departing coach insists foundations have been laid April 22, 2007

Fletcher: England need more time

Cricinfo staff

'They've got a bit of learning to do' © Getty Images

Despite England's disastrous winter, and a limp performance in the World Cup, the departing England coach, Duncan Fletcher, insists the foundations have been laid to build a successful side.

"I think the foundations are there," Fletcher said in a news conference in Barbados, following England's thrilling one-wicket win over the West Indies yesterday. "If you look around we are the youngest side in the world in Test cricket not only in caps and ages, but also in experience.

"We've shown the way we can play on occasions, we just haven't put it together on a consistent basis. The foundations are there, but I think it might take a little bit longer. I have said previously that this World Cup was a bit early for them and it could take up to a year, but who knows?

"They could suddenly put it together in six months, but I would still be a little bit patient with them because they've got a bit of learning to do."

Far from seeking the quiet life after spending eight years under the public's fickle gaze, he revealed he is open to offers from other countries and maintains he still has plenty to give. "I do need a break," he admitted. "I probably need a month and then I'm sure my wife will be trying to kick me out of the house." Asked when he would be ready to take on a new challenge, Fletcher said: "Tomorrow, I reckon."

Fletcher resigned last week with his replacement, Peter Moores, announced just 24 hours later. And although no one has yet approached him with an offer, Fletcher remains confident that his knowledge and experience can be put to good use.

"I've got ideas; I think I can help," he said. "I really feel that as far as coaching is concerned I am still forward-thinking [and] can think out of the box. One thing you can say is that when I got the job not many people wanted it. Now everyone's clamouring for it. So that's probably a good indication."

Moores's reign as England coach begins on May 1.