England vow to attack in pursuit of Women’s T20 World Cup glory
Sarah Glenn says England will head into the Women’s T20 World Cup determined to emulate the aggressive approach that has proved so successful for their male counterparts as they try to break Australia’s stranglehold on the global game.
England are one of the leading nations in the women’s game but they have not won the tournament since 2009.
To do so in South Africa this year they will probably need to get past an Australia side who have not lost in the format for nearly two years.
India, who beat England in the semi-finals of last year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, are set to provide leg-spinner Glenn and her team-mates with their biggest challenge in the group stage.
Former men’s international Jon Lewis, appointed as England women’s coach in November, has made it clear he wants the team to play fearless cricket.
The benefits of such an approach have been evident for an England men’s team who have won nine out of their 10 Tests since coach Brendon McCullum and captain Ben Stokes took charge in May.
Jos Buttler’s white-ball side underlined the impact of the “Bazball” revolution by adding the World T20 title in November to England’s 2019 50-over crown.
“You can see that the men’s team have developed this ethos of being really aggressive as well,” Glenn said in an online interview on Tuesday.
“It was quite inspiring to watch, especially in some of the Test matches, which was really good to see how they were panning it out. Quite a few of us were thinking, ‘Oh, we would love to play that kind of cricket’.
“It has always been in us and Lewy (Jon Lewis) is really bringing it out. Part of the process is believing we can do it, and he is making us do that.
“As long as we keep pushing for that and if England cricket can all have the same mindset, together as the men and the women’s teams, then I think we can create something really special.”
Glenn said an attacking approach would hold Heather Knight’s side in good stead even against a team as powerful as Australia.
“We’ve always been quite close to breaking that (beating Australia), but I think the difference now is that it’s all about us, not just about the opposition,” said the 23-year-old.
Glenn underlined her status as the number four bowler in the women’s T20 rankings with 3-30 in England’s 17-run warm-up win over South Africa on Monday.
Lauren Bell and Charlie Dean also took three wickets each, with Alice Capsey, Nat Sciver Brunt and Sophia Dunkley – whose fifty took just 15 balls – all scoring half-centuries in a total of 246-7.
England complete their warm-up campaign against New Zealand in Cape Town on Wednesday, having suffered a crushing eight-wicket defeat when they last faced the White Ferns, in the Commonwealth Games bronze medal match.
“The difference now is that we are piecing it together and are all in the same boat of how we want to play our cricket,” said Glenn. “We are also not playing reckless cricket, we are doing it really smartly.”
England begin their World Cup campaign against the West Indies in Paarl on February 11 – just weeks before the launch of the inaugural Women’s Premier League in India.
Last month, India’s cricket board auctioned off five women’s WPL teams for $572.5 million – a staggering sum in the history of women’s cricket.
“Obviously our focus is the World Cup but you can’t help but look ahead a little bit,” said Glenn. “The fact this opportunity has come around is absolutely amazing.”