Strauss and Bell plan to reach Sri Lanka early for better preparation

London: England captain Andrew Strauss and middle-order batsmen Ian Bell plan to reach Sri Lanka, a week earlier than the rest of the England team in a frantic move to prevent another debacle against spin bowling.

Both of them want to get acclimatized to Lankan conditions before England tour starts on March 26.

This is being seen as a desperate attempt by the duo to avoid another humiliating series whitewash in the subcontinent.

Some members of England`s management team would go together with the players and might even try to arrange for Strauss and Bell to play club matches in order to accustom themselves.

Strauss and Bell aren’t in the England one-day squad about to embark on four 50-over matches and two Twenty20s against Pakistan, The Sun reports. Wicketkeeper Matt Prior and some members of the one-day squad might join them.

This step is taken after head coach Andy Flower’s said that the England team wasn’t properly prepared for the Test series against Pakistan in Abu Dhabi.

In the after effects of England`s Third Test defeat, Flower had said: “We`ve looked at the lessons in terms of our preparation for this tour and will have a slightly different preparation for the Sri Lanka tour and India at the end of the year. We have a skeleton plan.”

England is due to leave for the tour around March 11 where they have two official warm-up matches similar to the ones held before the series against Pakistan.

Bureau Report