Former England captain Alastair Cook has questioned the team`s preparations for their West Indies tour, after the visitors crashed to a humiliating 381-run defeat in the first Test in Barbados on Saturday.
England came into the contest having drawn their two warm-up games in the Caribbean against a Cricket West Indies President`s XI team earlier this month but Cook said the two-day matches had not fully sharpened the instincts of Joe Root`s side.
"Fail to prepare and you prepare to fail. That has become a cliche in sport but overuse does not erode its essential truth. Look at England over four days in Bridgetown," Cook wrote in his column for the Sunday Times.
"They didn`t have their fighting edge, and that is not surprising when you consider their pre-Test schedule."
West Indies, underdogs in the three-match series, bowled out England for 246 in the second innings after dismissing them for 77 in the first to seal the match.
"I know what it`s like at the start of a tour. Physically, you might feel a bit tired by the end of the first week after the fitness training and nets, but mentally you`re relaxed," Cook added.
"It`s imperative that you then undergo proper competition... England did not get that. However hard they tried in the two warm-up games, those fixtures added up to less of an experience than four-day first-class cricket would have offered.
"At the bare minimum, they should have had a two-day game in which 15 players were used... followed by a four-day match featuring the probable Test XI."
Cook, who retired in September as England`s most prolific batsman, said the tourists would be hurting ahead of the second Test which begins in Antigua on Thursday.
"If they weren`t match hardened before, they will be now. This side has a history of bouncing back," Cook added.