Matthew Mott has warned England’s struggling white-ball cricketers that ‘no one has a mortgage on a spot’ as the countdown begins to October’s T20 World Cup in Australia.
Jos Buttler’s side completed a miserable summer when they lost the deciding T20 international against South Africa at the Ageas Bowl on Sunday, leaving them without a series victory in four attempts since the retirement of Eoin Morgan.
Pressure is mounting in particular on opener Jason Roy, with both Phil Salt and Harry Brook waiting in the wings. And Mott admitted it was not too late to make changes before the World Cup, with 10 T20s to play first – seven in Pakistan and three in Australia.
England’s white-ball coach Matthew Mott has fired a World Cup warning to his squad
England were defeated by South Africa by 90 runs this weekend to continue their poor form
Referring to Roy, England’s white-ball coach said: ‘When you’ve been a great player, and you’ve delivered great things on a big stage, I think you deserve a bit of loyalty.
‘But at certain times, hard decisions need to be made, and young players come in and add energy. And those two players [Salt and Brook] are chomping at the bit for a game. It’s about making good decisions at the right times. No one in the team has mortgage on a spot.’
Mott also suggested that the World Cup will be ‘a stretch’ for Jofra Archer, who is recovering from a stress fracture of the back, but said Mark Wood, who is still on the mend from elbow surgery, was ‘probably closer’.
England Captain Jos Buttler has suffered a difficult start to life as skipper for Mott’s side
But he said England first had to solve a deeper malaise, after 12 white-ball matches in which their attacking instinct, honed during seven and a half years under the captaincy of Morgan, gave way to what Buttler called ‘timidness’.
‘What needs to happen in the short term is to be really honest about where the group’s at,’ said Mott.
‘Whenever you lose a great leader, there’s a void there. That also can create space for a number of other leaders to step up. And I think we haven’t seen that yet.
‘We want to build that confidence back up among this group, which is clearly lacking at the moment. And we need to acknowledge that.’