England in West Indies 2013-14 February 24, 2014

Wright faces grilling from England fans


Luke Wright has found out firsthand the views of some England supporters about the team's performances this winter after hitching a lift from the airport to his hotel.

Wright arrived in Antigua ahead of his team-mates and found himself without transport when he landed on the island, so a group of England fans said they would give him a ride. It felt like a long journey for Wright.

"Their flight from Manchester pulled in just behind mine from Miami, and my car didn't turn up - so it was nice of the 'Barmy Army' to drop me off ... and give me a good grilling on the way here of what they weren't happy with in the winter,'' he said.

"They probably asked more questions than here today actually. It was a long 45-minute drive. They were quite tough, but they were good ... and happy to find out what Mitchell Johnson is like to face. We need to be putting smiles back on their faces.''

To be fair to Wright, he would only have been able to answer about what happened in the Twenty20s at the end of the painful trip around Australia as he was not involved in the other two formats, but the 3-0 drubbing was enough to leave Wright feeling as hurt as those involved elsewhere.

His frustration was compounded by having impressed in the Big Bash League but then being unable to transfer that into the matches in Hobart, Melbourne and Sydney where he made 9, 0 and 8. However, the selectors have shown faith for the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh and, because of the emphasis on the short format, he also has a chance in the three ODIs against West Indies in Antigua.

"I think that was the most frustrating for me, going into that Australia series,'' he said. "I'd watched the whole way through and seen how disappointingly we'd played, and I felt in great nick from the Big Bash going into it and had played well against all the bowlers I was going to face for Australia.

"To then not do it was the most frustrated I've probably been in my career. It was so annoying and disappointing to come away from that performing badly ... I've got to put that right."

Much has been made within the England camp of looking forward, not back, but lessons will have to be learned about what happened in Australia. It was a tour that cost Andy Flower and Kevin Pietersen their jobs and also saw Graeme Swann retire.

"You walk away as a player and say 'why didn't you take those moments?' when you should have won games," Wright said. "I've been asking [myself] that over the last three weeks since I left Australia. Sometimes you can't put your finger on it, and that's the hardest thing as a cricketer.''

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • R on March 1, 2014, 6:55 GMT

    Until the likes of Luke Wrong and Rabit Bopara are jettisoned from this side there will be zilch progress… Broad's comments that Bopara is their finisher blah blah was just side splittingly laughable.. Neither have ever delivered for Eng when it matters… And to think that Bopara has played 100 ODIs in just about every position is just mind boggling and shows how bereft of ideas Eng perennially are and how low their standards must perennially be for these guys to still get a gig…… Eng will be heading home long before the team jingle is released yet again… The King of Spain showing again he is nowhere near the man for the job…

  • Paul on February 25, 2014, 18:09 GMT

    A reasonable level of ignorance being shown amongst some of these comments. This tour consists of there ODIs and Three T20s. The ECB decided to send only the T20 squad out there in order to get them used to playing together, even though they are not all necessarily going to be in the frame for the ODI squad.

    Luke Wright's overall record in T20 internationals is not impressive at first glance. However, since he went over to Australia in 2012 for the Big Bash, he has improved considerably as a batsman, helped by moving up to open (I'd prefer to see him there for England in place of Lumb myself) although this has been at the expense of his bowling. He has the highest score in a T20 for England and one bad series this winter does not mean he is in the last chance saloon.

  • Tushar on February 24, 2014, 21:30 GMT

    Much ado about nothing. Is this really meant to be a headline article which lacks any substantive information other than Luke Wright hitching a lift from the airport!

  • Paulo on February 24, 2014, 19:12 GMT

    @jonnyboy82 I do agree however that they really ought to be playing T20Is, not ODIs.

    Personally I would have picked a different squad for the ODIs when knowing of their existence. I would have picked a side of youngsters with potential to be in the full side, such as James Taylor or James Vince.

  • Paulo on February 24, 2014, 18:57 GMT

    @jonnyboy82 While i do believe certain players such as Wright, Bopara, Bresnan, Wright should be no where near the ODI side (or the T20I side in each of these instances), given England's recent woeful performances in ODIs since reaching number 1, do you not agree a new approach is needed?

    Not sure why England keep picking Wright. He's played 97 matches for England but scored just 6 50s. Averages barely over 20 in ODIs and under it in T20Is. Although he appears to have improved his game at domestic level, the improvement always just disappears at international level.

  • Vic on February 24, 2014, 18:35 GMT

    Lay off Luke; he's in our team, right? His "one trick" is the value shot for him in T20. In the CC he has two daddy hundreds, using the full range of strokes. He is underbowled, a pity as he's a canny yorker and economical but may be lacking practice now. True, England should be playing 20/20s mixed with the training. Usual ECB muddle.

  • Jonathan on February 24, 2014, 13:46 GMT

    I think Wright is a one trick pony, his game consists of clearing his front leg and smashing over deep mid wicket. He can be very dangerous in 20/20 but I don't see any future for him in the one days.

    Why are England playing three one day's with some personnel that will never be in contention for the World cup next year? I can understand getting the team together in a training camp, and Antiga seems a nice destination, but why not play 20/20's? There seems no rhyme or reason to the ECB decision making these days.

  • Dummy4 on February 24, 2014, 12:42 GMT

    Plenty of other cabs on the rank. Woakes, Taylor and a raft of other players want your position Wrighty. Since the days when Charles Colville couldn't say your name without prefacing it with "Young"... as in "Young Luke Wright" this and "Young Luke Wright" that, you should have either turned into the finished product, or been discarded for one of the queue of players equally worthy of an opportunity at the top level. The next 6 weeks is hit or bust Mr Wright. Your last chance I reckon. Main issue for me is back up bowling. Bizarre selections of out of form players (Tremlett). Losing the plot totally (Finn) Looking like they needed oxygen half way through their first over of long hops and wide half volleys (Rankin) Quitting (Swann), Left arm orthodox bowlers deciding to bowl medium pace (Panesar) Losing a yard of pace and the ability to swing the ball (Bresnan).

    Whoever is in charge of the bowling unit wants sacking ASAP. I doubt back up bowling from Luke Wright is the answer either.

  • Android on February 24, 2014, 11:36 GMT

    you don't have Right to Write off Wright, he didn't do much right when Australia written off England without any Fight but I think Wright will come strong next time. thats Right , Wright?

  • Dummy4 on February 24, 2014, 8:08 GMT

    I wish I was there and had Jimmy Anderson instead of Wright. He'd be in tears when he found out what even people from his own county think of his on-field antics. English cricketers are surprisingly far removed from the fans.

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